By Mark Ellis —
After the passing of the most impactful evangelist of the 20th century, some have wondered if the powerful anointing resting on Billy Graham will fall from God on another evangelist, or, perhaps many.
Elijah’s understudy, Elisha, once asked the great prophet for “a double portion” of Elijah’s spirit to rest on him after Elijah’s assumption to heaven.
When a chariot of fire lifted Elijah into a whirlwind, his mantle (cape) fell to the ground and Elisha picked it up. The miracles continued to flow from God through the younger man.
Some mentioned as possible successors to Graham include Rick Warren, Greg Laurie, T.D. Jakes, Joel Osteen, and Graham’s children, Franklin and Anne Graham Lotz.
“I don’t think any single person will be ‘the next Billy Graham,’ ” Graham’s biographer, William Martin, told the Charlotte Observer. “That’s in part because evangelical Christianity has become so large and multifaceted – in significant measure because of what Graham did – that no one person can dominate it, regardless of talent or dedication. It’s just not going to happen.”
Martin noted that at many of Graham’s conferences, attended by thousands of itinerant evangelists from over a hundred countries, Graham would tell them: “You are my successors.”
“They would even call themselves “little Billy Grahams” going out and preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ in ways that his organization had taught them.”
The leader of the charismatic prayer movement known as The Call, Lou Engle, wrote on the day of Graham’s death: “It is my conviction that his passing is the signpost of a new day of evangelism and stadium Christianity breaking forth in America again.”
A few days before Graham’s death, Engle was fasting and praying when God impressed upon him thoughts about Elijah passing his mantle to Elisha. Immediately Engle thought about Billy Graham and wrote in the margin of his Bible next to 2 Kings 2, “I will not let you go Billy Graham until you let a double portion of your spirit be upon me and a new generation of evangelists,” according to The Briefing, an online publication from Engle’s organization.
Benny Hinn prophesied in 2012 that when Graham passed to his reward, it would mark the beginning of the greatest revival on Earth. “Billy is about to go home and when he does, I’m telling you, the whole church, get ready,” Hinn noted.
Other prophetic leaders, such as Chris Berglund have shared similar ideas: “At Billy Graham’s home-going the greatest evangelistic outpouring will be ushered in,” according to The Briefing.
“A pastor friend also dreamed a few years ago of Billy Graham’s passing,” The Briefing noted. “In the dream he watched the mantle that was on his life lift from him, then hover for a moment, then burst into what he understood to be about 1000 pieces. Each of them shot with force into people all over the world, who then carried within them that same powerful anointing for evangelism.”
Many will be watching and praying for a double portion of the spirit that empowered Billy Graham to fall upon the next generation — for the greatest revival the world has ever seen.