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12 Elijah answered them, “If I am a man of God, may fire come down from heaven and consume you and your fifty men.” And divine fire[a] came down from heaven and consumed him and his fifty men.

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  1. 1:12 Divine fire: lit., “fire of God,” which in Hebrew sounds quite like “man of God.” The play on words is the basis for Elijah’s retort. This story was told among the people to enhance the dignity of the prophet and to reflect the power of God whom he served. A similar phrase, “the Lord’s fire,” described the miraculous divine fire that fell from a cloudless sky to consume Elijah’s offering in 1 Kgs 18:38.