Eliyahu Study Two by Reuven Ben Gershom
This Study is based on - 1 Melachim - 1 Kings 16:25 to 34 and 17:1 to 24.
“I will send you Eliyahu the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of YHVH.”
Malochi - Malachi 4:5
Introduction and a short recap!
In Study One we covered the first two scenes of the astounding life of Eliyahu - Elijah the Prophet and we also discovered that he was born in the rugged region of Tisbe and was raised by a faithful family of Israel, yet it is completely unknown of which tribe he is from. He is described as a man of a rugged appearance who lived in an extremely rocky and a rough environment. Yet it was this rugged man of faith who had the audacity to walk into the Royal palace, and stood right in front of the king without prior appointment and challenged the King spiritually, as well as with a threat of a great drought and having spoken he suddenly turned his back on King Ahab, which was considered as the ultimate insult and walked out of the palace. He then went to the brook of Cherith as the Almighty commanded him. There being at the right place and at the right time the ravens miraculously fed him.
We also learned that the word “Cherith” actually means a time of “temporary separation” or “Divorce.” It is the same word that was used when YaHVaH Elohim (the LORD God) said that He would give Israel “a bill of divorce.” (Yirmyahu - Jeremiah 3:8). By using the word “Cherithuth,” and this proves that Israel was never “Divorced forever” as so many “christians” teach, claiming themselves to be the new chosen people, and as a new “Spiritual Israel.” Also, according to many in the church, Israel is now a nation of sin because they all rejected their messiah and are “Christ killers.”
The truth is that this is an untrue, for YaHVaH Elohim, blessed be His Sanctified Name, proclaimed, that due to Israel’s sins at the time of Yirmyahu - Jeremiah, there would be a “separation” until she (Israel) learned her lesson and repented, she would then be fully restored, as the metaphorical “wife.” And this is yet to happen. Also, we need to understand that it was Israel the faithful who accepted Yahushua THE Messiah, for all the apostles were Hebrews, as were all of the early believers, and remember that all the Scriptures were written by Hebrews! It was only later that the Good News was spread amongst the Gentiles and then, praise be to His wonderful Name, the Two became “One in the Body,” - “neither Jew nor Greek.” HalleluYAH!
We learned in our previous study that Eliyahu remained at the brook, drinking its waters and eating that which the ravens brought to him to eat every day. Then as the drought slowly dried up the waters, Elohim spoke to Eliyahu once more and He gave him a new command.
“And it happened, after a while the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of YHVH came to him, saying, ‘Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there.” 1 Melachim – 1 Kings 17:7-9.
Elohim, blessed be He, commanded Eliyahu to leave the brook and travel to “Zarephath.” The name “Zarephath” actually means, “Refining” and Elohim would refine Eliyahu at Zarephath, making him an even greater servant. The Almighty prepared and refined Eliyahu for three and a half years, until he was able to fully rely on his Creator in three vital ways - PHYSICALLY, MENTALLY, and SPIRITUALLY!
Throughout our lives, we all need refining as we uphold the Word of Elohim. Refining is necessary, for we need to learn to wholly rely on our Heavenly Father and Messiah for our strength and direction! Eliyahu had already witnessed one amazing miracle, that being the ravens feeding him, for we know that ravens are selfish birds as they much rather take and they do not tend to give anything, but here we see the ravens bringing food twice a day to Eliyahu!
But now there would be two more miracles during his first days in Zarephath that would have an ongoing affect until the day he departed. But there would be one further and an even greater miracle to come, and it would be the greatest test of faith in all of history by a man of Elohim, and this would happen whilst Eliyahu was living in the widow’s house!
As we read the next portion, we will discover some amazing details!
“‘Then the word of YHVH came to him, ‘Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. I have commanded a widow there to provide for you.’ So, he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was their gathering wood. And he called to her and said, ‘Please bring me a little water in a cup that I may drink.’ And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, ‘Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.’ She said, ‘As YHVH your Elohim lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a little wood that I may go and prepare it for myself and my son, after we eat it, we will surely die.’ And Eliyahu said to her, ‘Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake first, and bring it to me; then make some for yourself and your son. For so says YHVH the Elohim of Israel: ‘the barrel of flour shall not empty, neither shall the jar of oil run dry, until YHVH sends rain upon the earth’ So she went away and did what had Eliyahu asked; and she and he and her household ate for many days. The bin of flour never became empty; neither did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of YHVH which He spoke through Eliyahu.” 1 Melachim – 1 Kings 17:8-16.
“Go to Zarephath which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there.” Whilst at the brook of Cherith Eliyahu had relied on Elohim PHYSICALLY, which was about to change dramatically for at Zarephath Eliyahu would now have to rely on Elohim MENTALLY.
The question arises; Why did Elohim send Eliyahu to Zarephath?
The truth is, if you would carefully think about it with common sense, understanding all the facts, you would realise that this is without doubt the very last place on earth Eliyahu should be sent. You may ask “Why?” The truth is that the city of Zarephath is the home of Yezebel – Jezebel, it is the heart of the kingdom of Sidonia and yes this is the very center of the enemy’s territory. Yet Elohim’s command to Eliyahu was, “Go … and dwell there.” It could be only there, where YaHVaH Elohim, blessed be His Sanctified Name, had also “commanded a widow” who would be at the well and provide for the prophet of Elohim.
However, there is another reason why Elohim sent Eliyahu to the home of Yezebel, for this evil and murderous woman and her armies would never ever think of searching for him in her homeland, let alone in her hometown. Thus as you can see Elohim, blessed be He, has a master plan and His plan never fails!
The next question should be; why would YaHVaH Elohim, blessed be His Sanctified Name, choose this unfortunate poor Sidonian woman, to take care of Eliyahu?
The simple fact is, Elohim has a plan for everyone, if they will only heed to Him and His chosen servants. In return this widow was about to receive one of the greatest blessings due to Eliyahu’s presence and her obedience, which will become obvious later!
But did you realise, that by going to Zarephath and living with the widow that Eliyahu met for the very first time at the well, would present some major difficulties for him.
These difficulties are as follows for a man of Elohim and a Hebrew man!
(1) He would have to accept hospitality & charity.
For a man to request help is to disgrace himself.
(2) He would have to depend on a woman.
He was raised with the idea that men must be the dependable providers.
(3) Live with a widow. How could a man of Elohim live in a widow’s house?
People would gossip, with innuendos disgracing him, and thus his Elohim.
(4) To go and ask help from a pauper.
This would be difficult, for his upbringing would have been to give Tzedakah (charity) to the poor.
(5) To go to a Gentile, a Sidonian, who worshipped pagan gods, for help and lodgings.
The food, especially the environment would not be Kosher, thus technically unfit for his consumption.
(6) To go to the center where Ba’al was worshipped.
One single man would be the single light in a place of darkness.
The above difficulties would deal with Eliyahu’s spiritual convictions and yes, even his manly hood in those days. Yet, in humility he obeyed his Elohim and duly went to the appointed place. As he arrived at the gate of the city, he immediately saw and met the widow. When Elohim sends His chosen prophets to a specific place, He prepares others to meet and care for them, but only when they are at the right place at the right time! The widow was there at the appointed time and place. She was there gathering wood to make her very last meal, before she and her son were to starve to death due to the severe drought. Yet, this widow’s very first act was to give Eliyahu some water.
Then he asks her for some bread and she replies …
“As YHVH YOUR Elohim lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin and a little oil in a jar.”
Eliyahu commands her to make him some bread first then make some for herself and her son. As Eliyahu gave her a command, he coupled it with a promise.
“For thus saith YHVH the Elohim of Israel, ‘the barrel of flour shall not empty, neither shall the jar of oil run dry until, YHVH sends rain upon the earth.”
All this happened, just as the Almighty said through His prophet. Each day, as the flour and the oil was used, Elohim would replenish it. We do not see Elohim filling her storehouse up to the roof with flour, nor adding many barrels of oil. No, He supplied sufficient for each day. It was like that in the wilderness, when Elohim provided sufficient manna for each day.
Beloved, the Almighty knows our needs; He will supply us with what we need and not the things we want to fill our storehouses full of money and luxuries. All we need is His Word and our daily needs! “Father give us our daily bread!”
So far in these two studies, we have seen Eliyahu rely on Elohim PHYSICALLY at Cherith, but now at the widow’s house in Zarephath he has to rely on His Elohim MENTALLY.
But the time was approaching fast that Eliyahu would have to rely on YaHVaH SPIRITUALLY. This is about to happen in the forth scene and this concerns the widow’s son.
“And it came to pass after that time that the woman’s son fell sick; and his sickness was so severe, that his breath left him. And she said unto Eliyahu, What have I done to you. Are you a man of Elohim? Have you come to remind me of my sins, and to kill my son? And he said to her, Give me your son. And he took him out from her care, and carried him up to the room on the roof, where he lived, and he laid him on his bed. And he cried out unto YHVH, and said, O YHVH my Elohim, have You brought this evil upon this widow with whom I live, by slaying her son? And he (Eliyahu) placed himself on the child three times, and cried unto YHVH, and said, O YHVH my Elohim, I pray to You let this child’s soul once again return to him. And YHVH heard the voice of Eliyahu; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he was revived. And Eliyahu took him down from his room, back into the house, and returned him to his mother: and Eliyahu said, ‘See, your son lives.’ And the woman said to Eliyahu, ‘Because of this I know that you are a man of Elohim, and that the Word of YHVH in your mouth is the truth.” 1 Melachim – 1 Kings 17:17-24.
Thus, we have now come to the supreme test for Eliyahu, as we see a boy having become so ill, that he died. The widow in her distress blames Eliyahu, but more so she blames the Elohim of Eliyahu. Later, Ahab would also blame Eliyahu for all of his troubles and he would call Eliyahu “The trouble maker of Israel.”
How did Eliyahu handle the situation? There was only one thing that Eliyahu could possibly do and thus he took the whole matter directly to Elohim, how did he do this? He took the boy in his arms and carried the body to his room that was located up on the roof where he lived, separating himself and the boy from his mother. There he stretched himself over the boy three times and prayed earnestly with great faith unto YaHVaH Elohim, blessed be His Sanctified Name. I believe that by now the faith of Eliyahu was so strong that he fully believed in the power of prayer and that he fully believed that Elohim, as the Creator was able to do anything even resurrect this boy from the dead!
Both Eliyahu and the woman were about to see the greatness and the power of the Elohim of Avraham, Yitzchak - Isaac and of Ya’akov - Jacob, the one true YaHVaH Elohim, who can do anything and that He will do it if asked in complete and obedient faith. And beloved to this very day, we who are redeemed in the Name of Yahushua the Messiah can also ask anything Elohim in Messiah’s Name!
“And whatever you ask in My Name that I will do that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My Name, I will do it.” Yochanan - John 14:13-14.
According to the Tanach - Old Covenant, up to the time of Eliyahu no one had ever raised anyone from the dead. However, Eliyahu with complete faith in the Almighty prayed and sought Elohim to that which had not been done before. Although, there was no precedent for such a mighty miracle, yet, in complete faith he asks his Elohim to restore this boy back to life, and blessed be to Elohim, He did and the boy lived!
As Eliyahu returned the boy to his mother, he proves to her that Elohim did not only miraculously provide food from the day he arrived, but also that the Creator of heaven and earth is also able to bring the dead back to life! This enormous event saw this Sidonian woman and her son accept YaHVaH Elohim with a complete faith!
Upon the arrival of Eliyahu in Zarephath, the woman declared, “As YHVH YOUR Elohim lives,” thus saying, He is your Elohim, not mine. Now, having seen the great and blessed love and power of the true Elohim, the widow of Zarephath now declares, “I know that you are a man of Elohim, and that the Word of YHVH in your mouth is truth.” Blessed be YHVH, she and her son had now accepted the Elohim of Israel there and then!
Although Eliyahu had now passed the greatest tests of all tests, the greatness of Elohim was yet to be publicly shown to many people and pagan priests who belittled the Elohim of Israel on top of Mt. Carmel at a later date, which will be part of a later study.
Beloved, the world continues to seek for wealth, health, money, and the material things of the world. I call this, the “I, me, and myself,” the same attitude that Pharaoh had.
Thus, what is the message we learnt in this study? …
I find it so sad, but those who claim to be “christians” but they do not live within the Word. “Return again unto Him, and He will return again unto you”, only then when you have returned and accepted the true Messiah Yahushua, you can “Let you light so shine” and call others, even some “christians” to come back to the truth of the Word and join the “Little Flock” of the faithful. YHVH calls His people to …
“Return (shuv – t’shuva - repent) to Me, says YHVH of hosts, and I will return to you, saith YHVH of hosts.” Zechariah 1:3.
“The TRUTH will set you FREE.” Yochanan – John 8:32.
Many need to make t’shuva (repentance) and return to reading, studying the Word of TRUTH, beloved, read the miracle again what Elohim did with a man of faith and how Elohim answered his prayer. This is our Elohim, a great Elohim, the only Elohim. Knowing this, would you not wish to obey, and please Him and His Anointed One, Yahushua the Messiah!
Some might say, “Well that was an excellent study.” If you have said or thought this, let me say this, “If this study had an effect on your life, and will be acted upon, then it was a good study. However, if this powerful event in the life of Eliyahu the prophet has no effect on your life, and it does not change you, then this Word study is wasted. It is my prayer that it will be of effect, now or later!”
*Some will say, but brother, the Old Covenant, has been replaced by the New Covenant. No matter what you might think the New Covenant says, ask yourself this question, “does the Almighty give His Word, and then nullify it, or change it”? No, the Word of Elohim stands forever, for Israel and those grafted in! Elohim does not change His mind!
If you even believe that the Tanach - the Old Covenant has no value any more, then you are not a follower of Yahushua, for He only quoted the Tanach, as there was no other Scriptures, and the same applied to all the Apostles!
“Teach me Your way, O YHVH. I will walk in Your truth.
UNITE MY HEART TO FEAR YOUR NAME!”
Tehillim – Psalms 86:11
May YHVH Elohim bless and keep you in the palm of His hand always, in Messiah Yahushua’s loving Name!
Ministry founder, elder & teacher: Reuben ben Gershom.
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If there is a disagreement please have it respectfully.
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