July 26, 2010 • By Ed Wrather
Then he went up from there to Bethel; and as he was going up the road, some youths came from the city and mocked him, and said to him, “Go up, you baldhead! Go up, you baldhead!” So he turned around and looked at them, and pronounced a curse on them in the name of the LORD. And two female bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths. Then he went from there to Mount Carmel, and from there he returned to Samaria. - 2 Kings 2:23-25 NKJV.
There was a story on Fox News about a bear who took a ride in a car. It happened in Colorado while the vehicle’s owner, Ben Story and his family were asleep. A large black bear was apparently attracted by a sandwich that was in the back seat. The bear successfully opened the car door, but once inside the door shut and he could not exit. The bear then went berserk trashing the inside of the car, knocked the car out of gear, turned on the four-way flashers, and began honking the horn as the car rolled down the hill. At least he was a courteous driver warning of the out of control vehicle! That is when Ben Story and his family awakened. Police officers were finally able to tie a rope to the door handle and opened it safely from a distance. The bear then made his escape.
In 2 Kings, is this strange story about Elisha the prophet being mocked by a group of young people. Apparently, Elisha was bald, that much is clear, but there is the “Go up” that is repeated. What is that about? This story occurs just after the ascension of Elijah, in the flaming chariot and whirlwind (2 Kings 2:11-12), directly into Heaven bypassing physical death as Enoch did (Genesis 5:23-24). Elisha was obviously sharing this great occurrence with all that he encountered and this group of young people was telling him to go up like he said that Elijah had. They doubted Elisha’s story and they doubted God. The response of Elisha was to pray a curse upon the group of young people. Immediately, two bears wreak just as much havoc upon them as the bear did to the interior of Ben Story’s car.
Some people are reckless in their doubting and mocking of God. Some people are reckless in their doubting and mocking of God’s people. Some people are reckless in their doubting and mocking of God’s servants. Just tonight I read comments on a website that were mocking of God. This story in 2 Kings is a warning of the risk that is involved in the doubting and mocking of God and His people. There are strange and sudden deaths that occur every week, how many of them are divine interventions? There is, I believe, a line that must not be crossed. When it is crossed with our irreverent words and behavior a time of reckoning will come upon us.
There are millions of Christians, at least they claim to be Christians; who would never blatantly mock God, His people, or His servants. However, they do mock God, they do doubt God, by the way they live their lives. They never pray, they never read the Bible, they never go to church, they never witness, they never give to God’s work; they are practical atheists, mockers, and doubters of God. If you are one of these people, I beg of you before it is too late, to turn back to God and begin living your life for Him.