Sivut kuvina
PDF
ePub

meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: thou come unto me to call my sin to rememand, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that brance, and to slay my son ? 1 may go

in and dress it for me and my son, 19 And he said unto her, Give me thy that we may eat it, and die.

son.

And he took him out of her bosom, 13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; and carried him up into a loft, where he go and do as thou hast said: but make me abode, and laid him upon his own bed. thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto 20 And he cried unto the LORD, and said, me, and after make for thee and for thy son. O LORD my God, hast thou also brought

14 For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, evil unto the widow with whom I sojourn, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither by slaying her son? shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that 21 And he stretched himself upon the Lord 'sendeth rain upon the earth. the child three times, and cried unto

15 And she went and did according to the LORD, and said, O LOKD my God, I the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and pray thee, let this child's soul come 'into her house, did eat many days.

him again. 16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, 22 And the Lord heard the voice of Elineither did the cruse of oil fail, according to jah; and the soul of the child came into him the word of the LORD, which he spake by again, and he revived. Elijah.

23 And Elijah took the child, and brought 17 [ And it came to pass after these him down out of the chamber into the house, things, that the son of the woman, the mis- and delivered him unto his mother: and Elitress of the house, fell sick; and his sickness jah said, See, thy son liveth. was so sore, that there was no breath left in 24 9 And the woman said to Elijah, him.

Now by this I know that thou art a man of 18 And she said unto Elijah, What have God, and that the word of the Lord in thy I to do with thee, O thou man of God? art mouth is truth.

Heb. giveth.

Or, a full year.

7 lleb. by the hand of.

8 Heb. measured.

9 Heb. into his inward purts.

Verse 1. “ Elijah the Tishbile, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead.—It is commonly thought that this describes Elijah as a native of the town of Tishbe in Galilee (tribe of Naphtali), which the Apocrypha mentions as the birth-place of Tobit, and which is the only place of the name we know. But it does not follow that there was no place of the same or similar name on the east of Jordan ; for many places are mentioned only once in Scripture. It also rather tells against this interpretation, that the Jews in our Saviour's time believed that no prophet ever came out of Galilee. Furihermore, we doubt that the text describes him as the native of one place and the inhabitant of another; especially When we consider that the original clause is Tyna UND IVOI, in which the word rendered the inhabitants” is the same as that rendered "the Tishbite,” with the necessary difference in the servile prefix, and which, in this connection, the Septuagint understood as a proper name, giving the sense of, " the Tishbite, from Tishbe of Gilead.” This interpretation also agrees with Josephus, who says that Elijah was a prophet of Thes..on, a country of Gilead.

5. “ The brook Cherith.”—This appears to have been a winter torrent falling into the Jordan. There have been various opinions about its situation, particularly with reference to the side of the river on which it lay; In the first place, however, we think that if Elijah was apprehensive of Ahab's persecution, he would probably not have remained in the west of Jordan, but would have interposed that river between himself and his pursuers. We think this also is proved by the text, which places it " before Jordan ;" for, as we explained in the note to 1 Sam. xiii. 5, "before,” as a topographical indication, usually means “ eastward.” Upon the whole, it appears to us that the local traditions point out as fair an alternative as any that can he chosen. They place the retreat of the prophet near a brook on the east of the Jordan, a few miles below the ford near Bethshan. The district is finely broken into hill and vale; and being well wooded, and caverns being formed in the sides of some of the hills, it furnished as secure a retreat to the fugitive prophet as could be well selected, unless he had retired to the mountains or deserts on the outskirts of the kingdom. Josephus indeed says that he went into the southern parts of the country, which does not apply to the situation mentioned, which is nearly east from Samaria.

6. " And the ravens brought him bread and flesh.”—All the versions, the Arabic excepted, agree in rendering the word O'lny orebim, by “ ravens.” Such a weight of testimony is not to be lightly rejected, notwithstanding the difficulties of the interpretation which it offers. "It would suggest that the ravens, which would naturally be induced to harbour in such a wooded neighbourhood as that which

appears to have been Elijah's retreat, were directed by a controlling and directing impulse from God, to drop or otherwise deposit, near the refuge of the lone prophet, a portion of the food which they were conveying to their nests for their own offspring. The raw meat he might easily dress with a fire of dry wood: and as to the objection derived from the unclean character of the bird, according to the law, it has been much exaggerated; for although the bird was one of those declared unfit for food, it is not true that contact with it, or the touch of that which had been in contact with it, conveyed any ceremonial pollution. An ass was as unclean as a Taven; yet no one was polluted by riding on an ass, or by eating that which an ass had carried. However, many ageient and modern commentators are of opinion that the word on which the whole question turns should be rendered #3 & proper name, and as such referred either to the Arabians, whose name is (without the points) the same as this ; of else to the inhabitants of some town called Horbo or Orbo. This last conjecture is better than the other, and also than that which, from a similar analogy, makes the word to mean “merchants ;" and it would be still better if ke suppose the name of the town to have been Oreb (or raven). There are not known to have been any towns called Orbo or Horbo; but we know there was a rock called Oreb, from the Midianitish king of that name being slain there (Judges vii. 25), and a town or village near it may at this time have borne the same name. It is at least interesting to kuow that a local site bore this name of “raven;" and we have no hesitation in expressing an opinion that the alter native lies between real ravens and the inhabitants of a place denominated from the raven.

9. “ Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon.”—This place, called Sarepta in the New Testament, was one of the Pho nician towns which stood between Tyre and Sidon, and which, although less renowned than these two famous cities were still noted in history for their industry and manufactures. Reland quotes several ancient writers who celebrate the wine of Sarepta. It was also famous in mythology as the spot from which Europa, the daughter of Agenor, king of Phænicia, was stolen and carried to Crete by Jupiter. The town stood near the sea, about nine miles south of Sidon, where its modern representative is found in a small collection of humble dwellings (forming a hamlet called “Sarphan"), abont half a mile from the sea-side. The ancient town would seem to have stood on the declivity of the hills on which this village stands, and on the space between them and the sea. There are no standing ruins; Sarepta having shared the fate of five or six other considerable cities in this quarter, the sites of which are only distinguishable by numerous stones, much dilapidated, but retaining marks of having been cut square by the chisel, with mortar adhering to them, and some fragments of columns. Antoni.sus Martyr, who seems to have been there in the seventh century, says that Sarepta then existed as a small town, occupied by Christians, and where they failed not to show the apartment occupied by Elijah, the bed in which he lay, and even the marble vase in which the widow made her bread. There was a town there also, distinct however from the remains of the old one, in the time of Sandys, who says :-“We came to a small solitarie mosque not far from the sea ; erected, as they say, over the widdowes house that entertayned Elias ; close by it are the foundatio.s of Sarepta. It was the seat of a bishop, and subject unto Tyrus. Right against it, and high mounted on the mountayne, there is a handsome newe towne now called Sarapanta. Beyond, on the left hand of the way, are a number of caves, cut out of the rocke, the habitationes, as I suppose, of men in the golden age, and before the foundation of cities.” This comparatively modern town has also disappeared, being represented, es we n.entioned, only by the small village upon the mountain.

[graphic][merged small]

CHAPTER XVIII.

how I hid an hundred men of the Lord's 1 In the extremity of famine Elijah, sent to Ahab, prophets by fifty in a cave, and fed them meeteth good Obadiah. 9 Obadiah bringeth Ahab

with bread and water ? to Enjah. 17 Elijah, reproving Ahab, by fire 14 And now thou sayest, Go, tell thy from heaven convinceth Bual's prophets. 41 Eli- lord, Behold, Elijah is here: and he shall jah, by prayer obtaining ruin, followeth Ahab to

slay me. Jezreel.

15 And Elijah said, As the Lord of hosts And it came to pass after many days, that liveth, before whom I stand, I will surely the word of the Lord came to Elijah in the shew myself unto him to day. third year, saying, Go, shew thyself unto 16 So Obadiah went to meet Ahab, and Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth. told him: and Ahab went to meet Elijah.

2 And Elijah went to shew himself unto 17 | And it came to pass, when Ahab Ahab. And there was a sore famine in Sa- saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art maria.

thou he that troubleth Israel ? 3 And Ahab called 'Obadiah, which was 18 And he answered, I have not troubled 'the governor of his house. (Now Obadiah Israel; but thou, and thy father's house, in feared the LORD greatly :

that ye have forsaken the commandments of 4 For it was so, when Jezebel cut off the the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim. prophets of the LORD, that Obadiah took an 19 Now therefore send, and gather to me hundred prophets, and hid them by fifty in all Israel unto mount Carmel

, and the proa cave, and fed them with bread and water.) phets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and

5 And Ahab said unto Obadiah, Go into the prophets of the groves four hundred, the land, unto all fountains of water, and which eat at Jezebel's table. unto all brooks : peradventure we may 20 So Ahab sent unto all the children of find grass to save the horses and mules Israel, and gathered the prophets together alive, that we lose not all the beasts.

unto mount Carmel. 6 So they divided the land between them 21 And Elijah came unto all the people, to pass throughout it: Ahab went one way and said, How long halt ye between two by himself, and Obadiah went another way opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him : by himself.

but if Baal, then follow him. And the people 7. And as Obadiah was in the way, be answered him not a word. hold, Elijah met him: and he knew him, and 22 Then said Elijah unto the people, I, fell on his face, and said, Art thou that my even I only, remain a prophet of the LORD;

but Baal's prophets are four hundred and 8 And he answered him, I am: go, tell fifty men. thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here.

23 Let them therefore give us two bul9 And he said, What have I sinned, that locks; and let them choose one bullock for thou wouldest deliver thy servant into the themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it hand of Ahab, to slay me?

on wood, and put no fire under : and I will 10 As the LORD thy God liveth, there is dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, no nation or kingdom, whither my lord hath and put no fire under: not sent to seek thee: and when they said, 24 And call ye on the name of He is not there; he took an oath of the and I will call on the name of the Lord: kingdom and nation, that they found thee and the God that answereth by fire, let him not.

be God. And all the people answered and Il And now thou sayest, Go, tell thy said, 'It is well spoken. lord, Behold, Elijah is here.

25 And Elijah said unto the prophets of 12 And it shall come to pass, as soon as I Baal, Choose you one bullock for yourselves, am gone from thee, that the Spirit of the and dress it first; for ye are many; and call LORD shall carry thee whither I know not ; on the name of your gods, but put no fire and so when I come and tell Ahab, and he under. cannot find thee, he shall slay me: but I thy 26 And they took the bullock which was servant fear the LORD from my youth. given them, and they dressed it, and called

13 Was it not told my lord what I did on the name of Baal from morning even when Jezebel slew the prophets of the LORD, until noon, saying, O Baal, 'hear us. But

lord Elijah?

your gods, there was no voice, nor any that Ranswered. the prophet came near, and said, LORD God And they 'leaped upon the altar which was of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be made.

• Heb. that we cut not of ourselves from the beasts. • Or, thoughts. 6 Heb. The word is good.

Heb. Obadiaku,

? Heb. over his house.

8 Heb. Izebel.

7 Or, answer.

known this day that thou art God in Israel, 27 And it came to pass at noon, that Eli- and that I am thy servant, and that I have jah mocked them, and said, Cry1oaloud: done all these things at thy word. for he is a god; either "he is talking, or 37 Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this he "is pursuing, or he is in a journey, people may know that thou art the LORD or peradventure he sleepeth, and must be God, and that thou hast turned their heart awaked.

back again. 28 And they cried aloud, and cut them- 38 Then the fire of the LORD fell, and selves after their manner with knives and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, lancets, till the blood gushed out upon and the stones, and the dust, and licked up them.

the water that was in the trench. 29 And it came to pass, when midday 39 And when all the people saw it, they was past, and they prophesied until the time fell on their faces: and they said, The LORD, of the "offering of the evening sacrifice, that he is the God; the LORD, he is the God. there was neither voice, nor any to answer,

40 And Elijah said unto them, Take nor any "that regarded.

the prophets of Baal; let not one of them 30 And Elijah said unto all the people, escape. And they took them: and Elijah Come near unto me. And all the people brought them down to the brook Kishon, came near unto him. And he repaired the and slew them there. altar of the LORD that was broken down. 41 And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get

31 And Elijah took twelve stones, ac- thee up, eat and drink ; for there is a sound cording to the number of the tribes of the of abundance of rain. sons of Jacob, unto whom the word of the 42 So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. LORD came, saying, "Israel shall be thy And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; name:

and he cast himself down upon the earth, 32 And with the stones he built an altar and put his face between his knees, in the name of the LORD: and he made a 43 And said to his servant, Go up now, trench about the altar, as great as would look toward the sea. And he went up, and contain two measures of seed.

looked, and said, There is nothing. And he 33 And he put the wood in order, and said, Go again seven times. cut the bullock in pieces, and laid him on 44 And it came to pass at the seventh the wood, and said, Fill four barrels with time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a water, and pour

the burnt sacrifice, and little cloud out of the sea, like a man's on the wood.

hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, 34 And he said, Do it the second time Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, And they did it the second time. And he that the rain stop thee not. said, Do it the third time. And they did it 45 And it came to pass in the mean while, the third time.

that the heaven was black with clouds and 35 And the water "ran round about the wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab altar; and he filled the trench also with rode, and went to Jezreel. water.

46 And the hand of the LORD was on 36 And it came to pass at the time of the Elijah; and he girded up his loins, and ran offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah | before Ahab o'to the entrance of Jezreel. 8 Or, heard 9 Or, leaped up and down at the altar. 10 Heb. with a great voice.

18 Heb, hath a pursuit. 13 Heb. poured out blood upon them. 14 Heb. ascending:

16 Gen. 32. 28. 2 Kings 17. 34. 18 Or, Apprehend. 19 Or, a sound of a noise of rain. 20 Heb. Tie, or, Bind. Verse 19. Mount Carmel._This mountain forms a bold promontory on the south side of the fine bay of Acre; the town of that name being at the northern point of the same bay. It is, properly speaking, a range of mountains, about eight miles in extent, from north-west to suuth-east; and although it may fairly be regarded a part, yet, in a general view, it is obviously an extraneous member, of that central ridge of hills which traverses Judea from north to south: and the line of its connection therewith may be traced without difficulty. Regarded apart, its greatest elevation is about 1500 feet, according to Buckingham; although others have made it 2000 feet. To the north of this ridge is the bay of Acre, on the west a narrow plain descending to the sea, and on the east the river Kishon washes the inland part of its base before entering the bay of Acre, beyond which spreads the wide plain of Esdraelon. The elevation of the mountain gives it a refreshing temperature, with a degree of verdure and spontaneous productiveness remarkably contrasted with the sultry heat and aridity of the plains. "No part of the promised land," says Carne, creates a deeper interest in the traveller than the rich and extensive bosom of Mount Carmel; while barrenness is felt on every side, and the curse of the withered soil is felt on hill, valley, and shore, this beautiful mountain seems to retain its ancient 'excellency of Aowers, trees, and a perpetual verdure. The scenes in its interior are often bold aud

it on

15 Heb. attention,

11 Or, he meditateth.

11 Heb. wekt. 91 Heb. till thou come to Jezreel.

romantic in the highest degree; deep and verdant precipices descending into lonely glens, through which a rivulet is scen dashing wildly; the shepherd and his flock on the long grassy slopes, that afford at present as rich pasture ground as when Nabal fed his numerous flocks in Carmel.” (This is a mistake, as Nabal did not feed his flocks in this Carmel ; but still its rich pastures did render it “the habitation of shepherds ” — if this Carmel be intended in Amos i. 2.) “There is indeed a character peculiarly pastoral about the scenery; few grey or naked rocks, or sublime but useless cliffs, are here, as in the mountain of the Temptation, or on Pisgah. And this fertility and vivid verdure, on so sultry a soil, is deeply welcome and refreshing; more especially so the woods, that wave over the summits and sides. It is beautiful to stand beneath their shelter on the brink of the mount, and look far on every side, where nought but a forsaken and shadowless land meets the eye.” To this we may add the description of Sandys :

:-“ Mount Carmel hath his uttermost basis washt with the sea. It is steepest towards the north, and of indifferent altitude rich in olives and vines, when cultivated, and abounding with several sorts of fruits and herbs, both medicinable and fragrant; and now much overgrown with woods and shrubs of sweet savour." There are still olive-grounds at the north-eastern foot of the mountain ; and wild vines and olive-trees, found among the shrubs and brushwood upon its sides, bear testimony of ancient cultivation. Oaks and other trees abound in the higher parts of the mountain. Upon the mountain are the ruins of two old monasteries, and a third more modern, belonging to the Carmelite monks, which, after having lain ruined and forsaken during the greater part of the present century, has lately been repaired and re-occupied. There are spots pointed out, which, from their supposed connection with the history of Elijah, are visited with much veneration by Jews, Christians, and Moslems; such as the grotto in which he is said to have lodged-another, in which he instructed the “sons of the prophets”-a fountain which was produced by miracle to supply him with water-his garden, where certain stones are found which are fancied to be petrified fruits-the spot where he offered sacrifice—and that where the priests of Baal were slain. On all this we need only observe, that the mountain has several grottoes, of various dimensions, some one of which may have been the retreat of Elijah, if he had any retreat there, which the Scripture does not say. Perhaps to such retreats the prophet Amos alludes,—“ If they hide themselves in the top of Carmel, I will search and take them out thence (ch. ix. 3). The finest of these caves is that called “the school of Elias,” in the north-east side of the mountain, and is a well-hewn chamber, cut entirely out of the rock, and squared with great care; being 20 paces long, 12 broad, and from 15 to 18 feet high. Pococke declares it to be one of the finest grots he ever saw. The only determinations of locality which deserve attention are that of the slaughter of Baal's priests, which was certainly beside the river at the base of the mountain; and that which was the scene of the sacrifice. The latter can scarcely be doubted to have been on a part of the side or summit of Carmel which overlooked the river Kishon and the plain of Esdraelon. Mr. Carne says, “ There can be no illusion with respect to the scene of the memorable descent of the fire from heaven. When all Israel was gathered together unto Carmel,' it was clearly on this side the mountain, where it descends gradually into the noble plain beneath. The spot was finely.chosen by the prophet for the spectacle of his sacrifice; since the multitude of people, coming from the regions of Samaria might stand with perfect convenience in the splendid and open area of Esdraelon, which is here terminated at the foot of Carmel. The declivity of the mountain, its brink dark with Foods, and its sides covered with the richest pasture, looks over a vast extent of country on every side : from the hills of Samaria, Cana, and Gilboa, the miracle might have been beheld ; and to the eager gaze of the Israelites in the plain, the prophets of the groves, their useless altars, and the avenging messenger of God, were as distinct as if the scene had been acted at their feet. This too is the only face of the hill beneath which the Kishon flows." (Recollections of the East,' p. 45: see also the respective Travels' of Sandys, Thevenot, Pococke, Buckingham, and Irby and Mangles.)

[graphic][merged small]
« EdellinenJatka »