Elisha

/i luy"sheuh/, n.
1. Also, Douay Bible, Eliseus /el'i see"euhs/. a Hebrew prophet of the 9th century B.C., the successor of Elijah. II Kings 3-9.
2. a male given name.
[ < Heb elishua' lit., God has saved]

* * *

flourished 9th century BC

Hebrew prophet.

As the successor of Elijah, he was strongly devoted to the Mosaic tradition of Israel and a potent enemy of all foreign gods and cults. He instigated a revolt against the ruling house of Israel, the dynasty of Omri, that resulted in the death of the king and his family. Elisha's story is told in the Hebrew scriptures in the books 1 and 2 Kings.

* * *

▪ Hebrew prophet
also spelled  Elisaios,  or  Eliseus,  

      in the Old Testament, Israelite prophet, the pupil of Elijah, and also his successor (c. 851 BC). He instigated and directed Jehu's (Jehu) revolt against the house of Omri, which was marked by a bloodbath at Jezreel in which King Ahab of Israel and his family were slaughtered.

      The popular traditions about Elisha (2 Kings 2–13) sketch a charismatic, quasi-ecstatic figure, very similar to Elijah. Like his mentor, Elisha was a passionate exponent of the ancient religious and cultural traditions of Israel, which both felt to be threatened by the ruling dynasty of Omri, which was in alliance with Phoenicia. (King Ahab's wife, the Tyrian princess Jezebel, was then trying to introduce the worship of Baal into Israel.) As a prophet, Elisha was a political activist and revolutionary. He led a “holy war” that extinguished the house of Omri in Jerusalem as well as in Samaria (2 Kings 9–10).

      Though Elisha recruited Jehu to revolt against and succeed Ahab, it was Elijah who was instructed to anoint Jehu as Israel's king (1 Kings 19:16). This is characteristic of the relationship between the two prophets; in popular estimation Elisha always remains partly in the shadow of his master. The story of the beginning of his apprenticeship (1 Kings 19:19–21) and the account in which he becomes Elijah's heir and successor (2 Kings 2:8–18) both feature the prophetic “mantle.” In the first, Elijah casts it upon his pupil; in the second, Elisha picks it up. The mantle, cultic garment of the prophet, carries connotations of power and authority.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • ELISHA — (Heb. אֱלִישָׁע; God is salvation ), Israelite prophetic wonder worker of the ninth century B.C.E. in the days of jehoram son of ahab , jehu , jehoahaz , and joash . According to I Kings 19:16, God commanded elijah on Mount Horeb to anoint Elisha …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Elisha — (v. hebr. Elischa) ist ein Vorname. Weibliche Namensträger Elisha Cuthbert (* 1982), kanadische Schauspielerin Männliche Namensträger Elisha Abas (* 1971), israelischer Pianist Elisha Cook (1903 1995), US amerikanischer Schauspieler Elisha Graves …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Elisha — • A Prophet of Israel Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Elisha — masc. proper name, from Hebrew, lit. God is salvation, from El God + yesha salvation …   Etymology dictionary

  • Elisha — [ē lī′shə, ilī′shə] n. [Heb, lit., God is salvation] 1. a masculine name: var. Ellis 2. Bible a prophet of Israel, ordained by Elijah as his successor: 1 Kings 19:16, 19; 2 Kings 2 …   English World dictionary

  • Elisha — Infobox Saint name=Saint Eliseus birth date= death date= feast day=June 14 venerated in=Roman Catholic Church Eastern Catholic Churches Eastern Orthodox Church Lutheranism imagesize= caption=Russian icon of St. Eliseus, 18th century (Iconostasis… …   Wikipedia

  • Elisha —    God his salvation, the son of Shaphat of Abel meholah, who became the attendant and disciple of Elijah (1 Kings 19:16 19). His name first occurs in the command given to Elijah to anoint him as his successor (1 Kings 19:16). This was the only… …   Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • Elisha — The designated successor of Elijah (1 Kgs. 19:19 ff.), who lived in the second half of the 9th cent. BCE. He seemed more at home in an urban environment than Elijah, even though his father was a farmer. He preferred city life (2 Kgs. 6:13) and… …   Dictionary of the Bible

  • Elisha — noun Etymology: Hebrew Ĕlīshā‘ Date: 14th century a Hebrew prophet and disciple and successor of Elijah …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Elisha — noun /ɨˈlaɪʃə/ a) A prophet, a disciple and successor of Elijah. b) of biblical origin, in quiet use since the 17th century …   Wiktionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.