Elijah, a Man of God


Ahab was a wicked king of Israel who disobeyed God’s commandments. So the Lord sent His prophet Elijah to warn the king. Elijah said to Ahab, “As the Lord God of Israel lives, there shall not be dew nor rain fall upon the ground until I call for it.”

This made the king very angry. Then the Lord told Elijah to go eastward into the hills and hide by a brook. The Lord said, “Thou shalt drink the water of the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.”

Elijah obeyed the Lord. And ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank the water of the brook.

A great famine spread throughout all of the land, for no rain fell, and there was no dew upon the ground. Even the brook from which Elijah drank grew smaller and smaller every day, until at last it dried up.

Then the Lord spoke again to Elijah and told him to go into a nearby city and seek food at the home of a widow woman. When Elijah came to the gate of the city, he saw the woman gathering sticks. He called to her to bring him a little water to drink and some bread to eat. The woman answered that she had no food in the house except for a handful of meal in a barrel and a little oil in a cruse. “I am gathering sticks so I can build a fire and cook one last meal that my son and I may eat,” she said.

“Make me a little cake first and bring it to me, and then make food for you and your son,” Elijah insisted. “For the Lord has promised that your barrel of meal and cruse of oil shall not fail until the day He sends rain upon the earth.”

The woman did as Elijah told her, and they all ate together for many days. And according to the word of the Lord, neither the barrel of meal nor the cruse of oil failed them.

Not long afterward the woman’s son became very sick and died. His mother was heartbroken.

Elijah said to the woman, “Give me thy son.” And he took the boy in his arms, carried him upstairs, and laid him on his own bed. Then Elijah cried unto the Lord, saying, “O Lord my God, I pray thee, let this child’s soul come into him again.”

And the Lord heard the prayer of Elijah, and the child was restored to life. Then Elijah took the boy downstairs and delivered him to his mother, saying, “See, thy son liveth.”

And the grateful woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that thou art a man of God and that the word of the Lord in thy mouth is truth.”

1 Kgs. 17:1–24.

[illustrations] Illustrated by Jerry Harston