June 18
2 Kings 2:7-14

A chariot of fire

Elijah knew that his time on earth was almost up. God had told him to coach Elisha to take over his task as a prophet. As they stood at the edge of the River Jordan, Elijah took off his cloak, rolled it up, and struck the river with it. The river parted and they crossed over on dry ground. As they walked together, Elijah asked Elisha, “What can I do for you before I am taken away from you?”

“Let me have even more of the Spirit’s power than you had,” Elisha replied.

Elijah said, “You have asked a hard thing, but if you see me when I am taken from you, God will give you what you have asked for.”

As they walked together, a chariot of fire pulled by horses suddenly appeared. Elijah was taken up to heaven by a whirlwind and Elisha saw him go up.

Is it possible to get to heaven without dying?

Most people want to go to heaven, but few think about how they would get there. To get to heaven, our bodies have to be changed. God must give us new heavenly bodies (1 Corinthians 15:53), and for this to happen, our old bodies must die. Elijah went to heaven without actually dying. What a way to go! If you had a choice, you would probably like to go that way too!

For believers, this will actually happen when Jesus comes for us. Jesus said that He is coming back in the clouds to take us up to heaven. He will come at a time no one expects, and all those who love Jesus will meet Him in the air. We will be changed in an instant and be with Him forever (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17). So, be ready at all times because you may be one of those who will go straight to heaven without actually dying.

Verse for today

After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 1 Thessalonians 4:17