a. Though Elisha does not perform any miracle in this story, nor does he do any of the action, this is a direct fulfilment of a prophecy given to Elijah years earlier.
b. Read 1 Kings 19:15-16. Many years had passed since God gave Elijah that message. Elijah has long since gone to heaven. Elisha, who was then young, is now an old man.
c. We must not become impatient and lose hope when God chooses to take His time in fulfilling prophecies He has made. We must remember the encouraging words of Peter in 2 Peter 3:8-9.
2. Elisha called one of the young prophets (v.1-3)
a. Elisha called one of the young prophets and gave him a very important secret mission to perform.
1) He told the young prophet to gird up his loins. He was to tuck his garments into his girdle or belt so that he could move quickly.
2) He was to take a box of anointing oil with him. The word “box” referred to a flask.
3) He was to go to Ramothgilead.
4) He was then to find Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat, take him to an inner chamber and anoint him as king over Israel.
5) Then he must open the door and flee.
b. This is interesting. I wonder why Elisha did not do this task himself? Perhaps, getting up in years, he was not well. Maybe, he wanted to give the younger prophet some practical experience. Perhaps his presence would have drawn too much attention and endangered Jehu. It could be that God simply told him to do it this way.
3. The young prophet went to Ramothgilead (v.4)
a. We do not know where Elisha was based at this time. He had many teaching stations around the middle region of Israel.
b. The young prophet went east to Ramothgilead. JFB states, “Ramoth-gilead – a city of great importance to the Hebrew people, east of Jordan, as a fortress of defense against the Syrians. Jehoram had regained it (2Ki 8:29); but the Israelite army was still encamped there, under the command of Jehu.”
c. The Cambridge Bible adds, “Here Jehu and his fellow officers had apparently been left in charge, while Joram went away to Jezreel. But from Joram’s action, when he finds Jehu approaching Jezreel (verse 21), it is clear that his wound was not of a very serious character. It may be therefore that he had seized the first opportunity of withdrawing from the war to the capital. If so the soldiery would be inclined to favour the generals who remained through the campaign, and to hold the king in contempt. This would explain the ease with which Jehu’s attempt succeeded in Ramoth-gilead, and the readiness with which his fellow generals fell in with the movement.”
4. He spoke to the captains of the host (v.5)
a. How the prophet was able to enter the room where the military captains were sitting may be as mysterious as how Elijah entered King Ahab’s presence with his news of coming famine.
b. He spoke to the group of captains. Jehu asked which captain he wanted to see. The prophet said he wanted to see him.
c. This mission was dangerous because he was promoting treason.
d. God had a specific will for Jehu. God also had a specific plan for Moses, Joshua, Elijah, Elisha, Daniel, Jeremiah, Jonah, Peter, Paul, James and others; therefore, I believe he has a specific plan for your life and mine as well. It is true that God has a general will for all Christians; however, you ought to seek to know His specific will for your life. This includes your life-long spouse, your occupation, your ministry for the Lord, etc.
5. He anointed Jehu and instructed him (v.6-10)
a. He poured the oil on Jehu’s head, told him that the Lord had anointed him to be king, and then he explained what God wanted him to do.
b. He was to destroy the family of Ahab completely (v.7-9).
c. He was to kill Jezebel as well (v.10).
d. He then opened the door and fled.
e. God authorised killing like this as a form of capital punishment. Joram and the entire household of Ahab were evil, wicked people who had committed capital crimes against God like murder and idolatry. It is another reminder to us that there will always be payday someday. God never just overlooks sin. Judgment day is coming. We must always conduct ourselves with this in mind. (Romans 14:12) “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.“