Leaving a Legacy

Legacy isn’t measured by what you accomplish during your life span. Legacy is measured by the lives that are affected by your life long after the inheritance is gone.

I Kings 19:15-16 

The Lord said to Elijah, “Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint…Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed you as prophet.

Lets look at Elijah's Legacy! 

Many biblical scholars consider him to be the greatest of the Old Testament prophets. One evidence of that is that it was Elijah, along with Moses that appeared and spoke to Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration.

Elijah certainly lived a remarkable life. One of the greatest miracles in the Bible is Elijah’s dramatic victory over the 400 prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel.  This could well be seen as the high point of his prophetic career.

Although perhaps there’s another candidate for that title – one that you might not have ever considered.

Shortly after the events on Carmel, God tells Elijah to anoint a successor-pointing back to the verse I referenced in the bulletin on Sunday. 

For six years Elijah poured himself into Elisha. can you imagine the vastness of the example he set and the insight of the instruction he gave?

After those years of investment, Elijah went the way of all flesh and passed from the scene.  (His exit was pretty dramatic!)

Elisha was left gazing to the sky with nothing to mark the moment except for his predecessor’s mantle or cloak. As he picked it up and put it on his shoulders, he not only wore Elijah’s garment, at that moment he assumed Elijah’s ministry.

And assume it he did!

You may not realize it,  but the true measure of Elijah’s success wasn’t the sum of the miracles he performed (14). It was actually  the twenty-eight miracles Elisha performed.

Using that metric, Elisha’s life accomplished even more than Elijah’s did. Why? How? Because Elijah didn’t simply pass on an inheritance (the mantle), he passed on a legacy (his example).

Who’s Your Elisha?

So, here’s the question? Whom are you anointing?  In whom are you investing?  Who’s your Elisha?

Your kids? Your grandkids? Your neighbors? The community? They as well as so many others in the next generations are so in need of an Elijah. What would it take for you to be one?

It’s been said that no one lives forever.  But that’s only partly true. Hugh Robert Orr offers this poetic word: “They are not dead who live in lives they leave behind. In those whom they have blessed, they live a life again.”

So go ahead and leave an inheritance- but more importantly... leave your legacy! 

- Amanda Henson