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Dictionary of Bible Themes – 5092 Elijah
5092 Elijah

5092 Elijah

Living in Israel, his ministry as a prophet was to oppose the worship of Baal in Israel, and the sin, injustices and idolatry of Ahab, Jezebel and Ahaziah. He came, probably, from Tishbe in Gilead, but his parentage is not certain. His name means “the Lord is God”.

Elijah’s special standing as a prophet

His prophecies and prayers were fulfilled and attested by miracles Drought prophesied and experienced: 1Ki 17:1,7; 1Ki 18:1-6; Jas 5:17
1Ki 17:14 provision of flour and oil prophesied Rain prophesied: 1Ki 18:41,44-45
1Ki 17:17-24 The widow’s son is restored to life. Fire falls from heaven at Elijah’s prayer: 1Ki 18:36-38; 2Ki 1:10,12 The death of Ahab and Jezebel, and of Ahab’s line prophesied and fulfilled: 1Ki 21:20-24; 1Ki 22:37-38; 2Ki 9:30-37

The word of the Lord came to him 1Ki 19:9-18 See also 1Ki 17:8; 1Ki 18:1; 1Ki 21:17,23,28; 1Ki 22:38

Elijah’s ministry to Israel

He confronts Ahab, king of Israel 1Ki 18:16-18 See also 1Ki 21:20-22

He challenges the people of Israel 1Ki 18:21

He challenges Baal and his prophets 1Ki 18:20-29,36-38

The prophets of Baal are sentenced to death and executed See also 1Ki 18:40

Elijah calls down fire on Ahaziah’s messengers 2Ki 1:1-14

He predicts Ahaziah’s death 2Ki 1:16-17

He appoints successors to continue the fight against Baal worshippers 1Ki 19:15-17 See also 1Ki 19:19-21 Elisha is called; 2Ki 8:13-15; 2Ki 9:1-13 Jehu is anointed by one of Elisha’s assistants.

He does not die, but is taken up to heaven

2Ki 2:11-12

Elijah’s lifestyle and character

It was one of simplicity See also 1Ki 17:2-6; 1Ki 19:4-5; 2Ki 1:8

He was a man of action and physical endurance 1Ki 17:1,3,9

Parallels between Elijah and Moses

2Ki 2:8 See also Ex 14:21-22; Jos 3:14-17; 2Ki 2:14

Elijah’s return is awaited by Israel

Some Jews believed John the Baptist was Elijah returned Lk 1:17 See also Mal 4:5-6 Jesus Christ recognises John as Elijah: Mt 11:14; Mt 17:9-13 pp Mk 9:9-13
Jn 1:21 John the Baptist denies being Elijah. Similarities of lifestyle and dress between Elijah and John: 2Ki 1:8; Mt 3:4 pp Mk 1:6

Elijah appears at the transfiguration of Jesus Christ

Mt 17:1-8 pp Mk 9:2-8

See also

1431prophecy, OT methods
2580Christ, transfiguration
5098John the Baptist
7773prophets, role
7775prophets, lives
8752false worship

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