ELIJAH – TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL

An angel comforted Elijah, who had become discouraged, because of threats made toward him by the evil Queen Jezebel. Elijah, one of the greatest prophets to ever walk this earth, was in fact, depressed. He was so disheartened that he wished he could die, which we know never happened because, as the scriptures later reveal, he did not die a physical death. God took him. Not only did the angel comfort Elijah, but also informed him that he had more work for him to do.

“But he (Elijah) himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat. And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baken on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again. And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee. And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Hereb the mound of God.” (I Kings 19:4-8)

Once again the angel of the LORD appeared to Elijah and sent him to deal with the king’s messengers who were on their way to consult with a false prophet concerning the king’s illness. Keep in mind that this was a king of Israel. It is somewhat humorous to watch Elijah up on a hill being met head-on by the king’s captains three different times. God intervened for Elijah by causing fire to come down from heaven, putting the king’s men to death. The third captain, with his group of fifty, who confronted Elijah, was humble. It is apparent that the angel was still with Elijah up on the hill, because he instructed Elijah not to kill the third group that came before him but to go and speak with him.

“And Ahaziah fell down through a lattice in his upper chamber that was in Samaria, and was sick: and he sent messengers, and said unto them, Go, enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron whether I shall recover of this disease. But the angel of the LORD said to Elijah the Tishbite, Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say unto them, Is it not because there is not a God in Israel, that ye go to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron? Now therefore thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. And Elijah departed. And when the messengers turned back unto him, he said unto them, why are ye now turned back? And they said unto him, There came a man up to meet us, and said unto us, Go, turn again unto the king that sent you, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Is it not because there is not a God in Israel, that thou sendest to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron? Therefore thou shall not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. And he said unto them, what manner of man was he, which came up to meet you, and told you these words? And they answered him, He was an hairy man, and girt with a girdle of leather about his loins, And he said, It is Elijah the Tishbite.

Then the king sent unto him a captain of fifty with his fifty. And he went up to him: and, behold, he sat on the top of an hill. And he spake unto him, Thou man of God, the king hath said, Come down. And Elijah answered and said to the captain of fifty, If I be a man of God, then let fire come down from heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty. And there came down fire from heaven, and consumed him and his fifty. Again also he sent unto him another captain of fifty with his fifty. And he answered and said unto him, O man of God, thus hath the king said, Come down quickly. And Elijah answered and said unto them, If I be a man of God, let fire come down from heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty. And the fire of God came down from heaven, and consumed him and his fifty. And he sent again a captain of the third fifty with his fifty. And the third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and besought him, and said unto him, O man of God, I pray thee, let my life, and the life of these fifty thy servants, be precious in thy sight. Behold, there came fire down from heaven, and burnt up the two captains of the former fifties with their fifties: therefore let my life now be precious in thy sight. And the angel of the LORD said unto Elijah, Go down with him: be not afraid of him. And he arose, and went down with him unto the king. And he said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou has sent messengers to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to enquire of his word? Therefore thou shalt not come down off that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. So he died according to the word of the LORD, which Elijah had spoken.” (II Kings 1:2-17)

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