Thoughts and Reflection
In today’s reading, we are introduced to Elijah and Ahab. Elijah hears the word of the Lord and obeys. Elijah fidelity sets him apart and offers an example for others to be faithful. He helps the widow of Zarphath, by providing food for her and her son. He is inviting her to faithfulness. Elijah asks the people of Israel how long they will waver between belonging to Baal and the Lord. He get’s no response and sets up a showdown between the profits of Baal and the prophet of God. Jehoshaphat is a good king but he makes a treaty with Ahab the evil king of Israel. Jehu tells the king that he is wrong.
We should pray to be more faithful to God each day.
About This Project
For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!
1 Kings 17
2 The word of Yahweh came to him,
5 So he set out and did as Yahweh had said; he went and stayed by the torrent of Cherith, east of the Jordan.
8 And then the word of Yahweh came to him,
9 ‘Up and go to Zarephath in Sidonia, and stay there. I have ordered a widow there to give you food.’
10 So he went off to Sidon. And when he reached the city gate, there was a widow gathering sticks. Addressing her he said, ‘Please bring a little water in a pitcher for me to drink.’
12 ‘As Yahweh your God lives,’ she replied, ‘I have no baked bread, but only a handful of meal in a jar and a little oil in a jug; I am just gathering a stick or two to go and prepare this for myself and my son to eat, and then we shall die.’
13 But Elijah said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, go and do as you have said; but first make a little scone of it for me and bring it to me, and then make some for yourself and for your son.
16 The jar of meal was not spent nor the jug of oil emptied, just as Yahweh had foretold through Elijah.
20 He cried out to Yahweh, ‘Yahweh my God, by killing her son do you mean to bring grief even to the widow who is looking after me?’
21 He stretched himself on the child three times and cried out to Yahweh, ‘Yahweh my God, may the soul of this child, I beg you, come into him again!’
23 Elijah took the child, brought him down from the upper room into the house, and gave him to his mother. ‘Look,’ Elijah said, ‘your son is alive.’
1 Kings 18
2 So Elijah set off to present himself to Ahab. As the famine was particularly severe in Samaria,
4 when Jezebel was butchering the prophets of Yahweh, Obadiah took a hundred of them and hid them, fifty at a time, in a cave, and kept them provided with food and water-
5 and Ahab said to Obadiah, ‘Come along, we must scour the country, all the springs and all the ravines in the hope of finding grass to keep horses and mules alive, or we shall have to slaughter some of our stock.’
6 They divided the country for the purpose of their survey; Ahab went one way by himself and Obadiah went another way by himself.
10 As Yahweh your God lives, there is no nation or kingdom where my master has not sent in search of you; and when they said, “He is not there,” he made the kingdom or nation swear an oath that they did not know where you were.
11 And now you say to me, “Go and tell your master: Elijah is here.”
12 But as soon as I leave you, the spirit of Yahweh will carry you away and I shall not know where; I shall go and tell Ahab; he will not be able to find you, and then he will kill me. Yet from his youth your servant has revered Yahweh.
13 Has no one told my lord what I did when Jezebel butchered the prophets of Yahweh, how I hid a hundred of them in a cave, fifty at a time, and kept them provided with food and water?
21 Elijah stepped out in front of all the people. ‘How long’, he said, ‘do you mean to hobble first on one leg then on the other? If Yahwehis God, follow him; if Baal, follow him.’ But the people had nothing to say.
22 Elijah then said to them, ‘I, I alone, am left as a prophet of Yahweh, while the prophets of Baal are four hundred and fifty.
25 Elijah then said to the prophets of Baal, ‘Choose one bull and begin, for there are more of you. Call on the name of your god but light no fire.’
26 They took the bull and prepared it, and from morning to midday they called on the name of Baal. ‘O Baal, answer us!’ they cried, but there was no voice, no answer, as they performed their hobbling dance round the altar which they had made.
27 Midday came, and Elijah mocked them. ‘Call louder,’ he said, ‘for he is a god: he is preoccupied or he is busy, or he has gone on a journey; perhaps he is asleep and needs to be woken up!’
29 Midday passed, and they ranted on until the time when the offering is presented; but there was no voice, no answer, no sign of attention.
30 Then Elijah said to all the people, ‘Come over to me,’ and all the people came over to him. He repaired Yahweh’s altar which had been torn down.
31 Elijah took twelve stones, corresponding to the number of tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of Yahweh had come, ‘Israel is to be your name,’
34 Then he said, ‘Fill four jars with water and pour it on the burnt offering and on the wood.’ They did this. He said, ‘Do it a second time;’ they did it a second time. He said, ‘Do it a third time;’ they did it a third time.
36 At the time when the offering is presented, Elijah the prophet stepped forward. ‘Yahweh, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel,’ he said, ‘let them know today that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, that I have done all these things at your command.
37 Answer me, Yahweh, answer me, so that this people may know that you, Yahweh, are God and are winning back their hearts.’
40 Elijah said, ‘Seize the prophets of Baal: do not let one of them escape.’ They seized them, and Elijah took them down to the Kishon, and there he slaughtered them.
43 ‘Now go up’, he told his servant, ‘and look out to sea.’ He went up and looked. ‘There is nothing at all,’ he said. Seven times Elijahtold him to go back.
44 The seventh time, the servant said, ‘Now there is a cloud, small as a man’s hand, rising from the sea.’ Elijah said, ‘Go and say to Ahab, “Harness the chariot and go down before the rain stops you.” ‘
2 Chronicles 18
1 Although Jehoshaphat enjoyed great wealth and honour, he allied himself by marriage to Ahab.
5 So the king of Israel called the prophets together, four hundred of them. ‘Should we go and attack Ramoth-Gilead,’ he asked, ‘or should I hold back?’ ‘March,’ they replied, ‘for God will deliver it into the king’s power.’
7 The king of Israel answered Jehoshaphat, ‘There is one more man through whom we can consult Yahweh, but I hate him because he never has a favourable prophecy for me, always unfavourable ones; he is Micaiah son of Imlah.’ ‘The king should not say such things,’ said Jehoshaphat.
9 The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah were sitting each on his throne, wearing their robes; in an open space just outside the gate of Samaria, with all the prophets prophesying before them,
10 Zedekiah son of Chenaanah, who had made himself some iron horns, said, ‘Yahweh says, “With horns like these, you will gore the Aramaeans till you make an end of them.” ‘
15 The king went on, ‘How often must I put you on oath to tell me nothing but the truth in the name of Yahweh?’
16 Then he spoke out. I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains like sheep without a shepherd. And Yahweh said, ‘These have no master, let them all go peacefully home!’
19 Yahweh said, “Who will entice Ahab king of Israel into marching to his death at Ramoth-Gilead?” At which some answered one way, and some another.
23 Zedekiah son of Chenaanah then came up, struck Micaiah on the cheek and said, ‘Which way did Yahweh’s spirit leave me, to speak to you?’
24 ‘That is what you will find out,’ Micaiah retorted, ‘the day you go from room to room, trying to hide.’
26 and say, “These are the king’s orders: Put this man in prison and feed him on nothing but bread and water until I am safely home.” ‘
27 Micaiah said, ‘If you ever do get home safely, Yahweh has not spoken through me.’
28 The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah marched on Ramoth-Gilead.
31 So, when the chariot commanders saw Jehoshaphat, they thought, ‘That is the king of Israel,’ and surrounded him to attack. But when Jehoshaphat shouted his war cry, Yahweh came to his help, God drew them away from him,
33 Someone, however, drawing his bow without any special aim, shot the king of Israel between the joints of his armour. ‘Turn about!’ he said to his charioteer. ‘Get me out of the fighting; I am collapsing.’
2 Chronicles 19
1 Jehoshaphat king of Judah returned home safely, however, to Jerusalem.
3 All the same, there are good things to your credit, since you have removed the sacred poles from the country and have set your heart on seeking God.’
5 He also appointed judges in the country in every one of the fortified towns of Judah,
6 saying to the judges, ‘Be careful what you do, since you are judging not by any human power but in the name of Yahweh, who will be with you when you pronounce sentence.
8 Jehoshaphat also appointed some of the Levites, priests and heads of Israelite families in Jerusalem to settle disputes. They lived in Jerusalem
10 whatever case your brothers living in other towns refer to you, whether involving blood feuds or law and commandment, statutes and judgements, you are to instruct them in such manner that they do not incur guilt before Yahweh and that you and your brothers do not incur his anger. If you act thus, you will not incur guilt.
11 Amariah the chief priest himself will be your president in all religious cases, and Zebadiah son of Ishmael, leader of the House of Judah, in all civil ones, while the Levites will act as officers of the court. Be firm, put this into practice and may Yahweh protect the right!’
Song of Solomon 5
1 LOVER: I come into my garden, my sister, my promised bride, I pick my myrrh and balsam, I eat my honey and my honeycomb, I drink my wine and my milk. POET: Eat, friends, and drink, drink deep, my dearest friends.
6 I opened to my love, but he had turned and gone. My soul failed at his flight, I sought but could not find him, I called, but he did not answer.
14 His hands are golden, rounded, set with jewels of Tarshish. His belly a block of ivory covered with sapphires.
15 His legs are alabaster columns set in sockets of pure gold. His appearance is that of Lebanon, unrivalled as the cedars.