A selection of verses about one of the great prophets of Israel during the time they were ruled by kings like the evil Ahab – about 800 BC.
We first meet Elijah when he tells king Ahab to expect a serious drought:
1 Elijah the Tishbite, who was one of the settlers of Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word.”
In a prolonged famine situation caused by the drought Elijah is fed by ravens:
6 The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening; and he drank from the brook.
Later he and a widow are fed miraculously with a supply of meal and oil:
14 For the LORD, the God of Israel says, ‘The jar of meal will not run out, and the jar of oil will not fail, until the day that the LORD sends rain on the earth.’ ”
15 She went and did according to the saying of Elijah; and she, and he, and her house, ate many days.
The widow’s son dies and is brought to life again by Elijah:
22 The LORD listened to the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived.
Elijah’s major triumph is against the worshippers of the god Baal:
38 Then the LORD’s fire fell, and consumed the burnt offering, the wood, the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. 39 When all the people saw it, they fell on their faces. They said, “The LORD, he is God! the LORD, he is God!”
40 Elijah said to them, “Seize the prophets of Baal! Don’t let one of them escape!”
They seized them; and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and killed them there.
After the prophets of Baal are destroyed, king Ahab's evil wife Jezebel threatens to kill Elijah:
1 Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. 2 Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I don’t make your life as the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time!”
3 When he saw that, he arose, and ran for his life, and came to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there.
After Jezebel's threats, Elijah is deeply depressed, but is encouraged by God that he still has important work to do:
15 The LORD said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. When you arrive, anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. 16 Anoint Jehu the son of Nimshi to be king over Israel; and anoint Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel Meholah to be prophet in your place.