Elijah Stops the Rain
1 Elijah was a prophet from Tishbe in Gilead. One day he went to King Ahab and said, “I'm a servant of the living Lord, the God of Israel. And I swear in his name that it won't rain until I say so. There won't even be any dew on the ground.”
2Later, the Lord said to Elijah, 3“Leave and go across the Jordan River so you can hide near Cherith Creek. 4You can drink water from the creek, and eat the food I've told the ravens to bring you.”
5Elijah obeyed the Lord and went to live near Cherith Creek. 6Ravens brought him bread and meat twice a day, and he drank water from the creek. 7But after a while, it dried up because there was no rain.
Elijah Helps a Widow
8The Lord told Elijah, 9 “Go to the town of Zarephath in Sidon and live there. I've told a widow in that town to give you food.”
10When Elijah came near the town gate of Zarephath, he saw a widow gathering sticks for a fire. “Would you please bring me a cup of water?” he asked. 11As she left to get it, he asked, “Would you also please bring me a piece of bread?”
12The widow answered, “In the name of the living Lord your God, I swear that I don't have any bread. All I have is a handful of flour and a little olive oil. I'm on my way home now with these few sticks to cook what I have for my son and me. After that, we will starve to death.”
13Elijah said, “Everything will be fine. Do what you said. Go home and fix something for you and your son. But first, please make a small piece of bread and bring it to me. 14The Lord God of Israel has promised that your jar of flour won't run out and your bottle of oil won't dry up before he sends rain for the crops.”
15The widow went home and did exactly what Elijah had told her. She and Elijah and her family had enough food for a long time. 16The Lord kept the promise that his prophet Elijah had made, and she did not run out of flour or oil.
Elijah Brings a Boy
17Several days later, the son of the woman who owned the house got sick, and he kept getting worse, until finally he died.
18The woman shouted at Elijah, “What have I done to you? I thought you were God's prophet. Did you come here to cause the death of my son as a reminder that I've sinned against God?”
19“Bring me your son,” Elijah said. Then he took the boy from her arms and carried him upstairs to the room where he was staying. Elijah laid the boy on his bed 20and prayed, “Lord God, why did you do such a terrible thing to this woman? She's letting me stay here, and now you've let her son die.” 21 Elijah stretched himself out over the boy three times, while praying, “Lord God, bring this boy back to life!”
22The Lord answered Elijah's prayer, and the boy started breathing again. 23Elijah picked him up and carried him downstairs. He gave the boy to his mother and said, “Look, your son is alive.”
24“You are God's prophet!” the woman replied. “Now I know that you really do speak for the Lord.”
Elijah is an unforgettable bible figure who is part of eight chapters in the narrative of the kings of Israel. All that the Bible reveals of his background is that he is from the village of Tishbe in Gilead. Elijah is recognized as the greatest prophet after Moses. He appeared with Jesus at his transfiguration as the one who represents the prophets, along with Moses who represents the law (Matthew 17: 3).
It is remarkable that Elijah was sent by God to Zarephath, not in Israel but in the neighbouring country of Sidon. He revealed himself, kind and compassionate towards all people. In the New Testament Peter says: “The Lord…is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
With the spectacular interventions of Elijah, God gave his people another opportunity to repent. The purpose of God’s correction is always that his children return to him.
Elijah was guided by God to confront God’s adversaries. The rain was stopped, Elijah was fed by the birds, the flour and the oil were multiplied, a child was resurrected. And this was only the beginning.
Nothing stops the Lord when he wants to manifest his power, his glory and his faithfulness to us. No one will ever be able to say that God has not done everything in order to save humanity. He even sent his only Son to pay for our sins, so that “…whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16 NIV)
God has preserved his word, the Bible, that you are reading now, so that you might know the truth about him and about your position in the presence of a holy God.
Continue your journey in his word; your eternity depends on it.
Loving God of miracles, lead us we pray, on the path of our life. O Lord, may we personally know your love, that we might be among those who find eternal life in Jesus Christ. May we spend it in your company and in the company of Elijah.