1 Kings 19: Elijah Learns More about the Holy Ghost

Old Testament Seminary Student Study Guide, (2002), 110

It would seem that the events recorded in 1 Kings 18 would convince anyone who witnessed or heard about them that Elijah’s God is the true God. Not every one was convinced, however, because true conversion only occurs through the Holy Ghost—not through mighty miracles. The Spirit was likely present at the events in 1 Kings 18, but only those who were receptive to it had a change of heart. A change of heart does not occur because of fire out of heaven but rather because of quiet burning in the heart. Look for how the Lord reminded Elijah of this principle in 1 Kings 19.As you read, you may also want to consider how you feel when you’ve done the right thing but then suffer in some way for your decision. If you have ever felt as if you have suffered unjustly, you can especially relate to Elijah in 1 Kings 19. Notice in 1 Kings 19 what and how the Lord taught Elijah when he was discouraged. Perhaps knowing Elijah’s story may help you at a time when you stand for the right but feel like you are standing alone.

Understanding the Scriptures

1 Kings 19

Withal (v. 1)All about 
Jealous (vv. 10, 14)Provoked to anger 
Mantle (vv. 13, 19)Overcoat or cloak that also became a symbol of his authority and power 
Instruments (v. 21)Plowing equipment 

1 Kings 19:11–12—What Was the Most Powerful Manifestation of the Lord?

Elijah was discouraged that the miracles on Mount Carmel did not change the hearts of Jezebel and many others. The Lord then taught Elijah that spiritual, heart-changing experiences are not in a “strong wind,” or “earthquakes,” or “fires,” or other loud and physical things but in “the still small voice” (1 Kings 19:11–12).

Elder Boyd K. Packer taught, “The Spirit does not get our attention by shouting or shaking us with a heavy hand. Rather it whispers. It caresses so gently that if we are preoccupied we may not feel it at all” (“The Candle of the Lord,” Ensign, Jan. 1983, 53).

Studying the Scriptures

Do two of the following activities (A–C) as you study 1 Kings 19.

Activity A iconDiscouragement

Look at 1 Kings 19:1–4, 9–10 and explain why Elijah was discouraged.

Activity B iconOvercoming Discouragement

  1. 1.

    Write about at least three things the Lord did in 1 Kings 19 to help lift Elijah from his discouragement.

  2. 2.

    For each item you list, explain how you think it lifted Elijah in some way. In what ways does the Lord help us through our own discouragements and disappointments today?

Activity C iconWhat Did He Learn?

How could Elijah’s experience in 1 Kings 19 help him understand why things didn’t turn out as he hoped after the events of chapter 18?