Widow of Zarephath

Widow-of-Zarephath

When we are obedient to him,
we will receive his blessings.




Introduction to King Ahab

30 Ahab son of Omri did more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him. 31 He not only considered it trivial to commit the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, but he also married Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and began to serve Baal and worship him. 32 He set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal that he built in Samaria. 33 Ahab also made an Asherah pole and did more to arouse the anger of the Lord, the God of Israel, than did all the kings of Israel before him.
– 1 kings 16:30-33 (NIV)

Introduction to Elijah

Now Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.”
– 1 kings 17 (NIV)

Meaning of the name Elijah

Hebrew name אֱלִיָּהוּ (‘Eliyyahu):
Means “My God Jehovah is he…”
Because there is no father of decent or connection to any tribe listed for Elijah, many orthodox Jews believe that he was an Angel.
16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. 17 Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. 18 Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.
– James 5:16-18 (NIV)
“Not only that he was liable to the common infirmities of human nature, but that, by his natural temper, he was a man of strong passions, more hot and eager than most men, and therefore the more fit to deal with the daring sinners of the age he lived in: so wonderfully does God suit men to the work he designs them for. Rough spirits are called to rough services.”
– Matthew Henry (Bible Commentary)

God speaks to Elijah

Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: 3 “Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. 4 You will drink from the brook, and I have directed the ravens to supply you with food there.”
– 1 kings 17:2-4 (NIV)
So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there.
– 1 kings 17:5 (NIV)
The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.
– 1 kings 17:6 (NIV)
Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. 8 Then the word of the Lord came to him: 9 “Go at once to Zarephath in the region of Sidon and stay there. I have directed a widow there to supply you with food.”
– 1 kings 17:7-9 (NIV)

Elijah meets the Widow of Zarephath

10 So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, “Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?” 11 As she was going to get it, he called, “And bring me, please, a piece of bread.”
– 1 kings 17:10-11 (NIV)
12 “As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.”
– 1 kings 17:12 (NIV)
13 Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. 14 For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’”
– 1 kings 17:13-14 (NIV)
15 She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. 16 For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.
– 1 kings 17:15-16 (NIV)

The Widow’s son becomes ill

17 Some time later the son of the woman who owned the house became ill. He grew worse and worse, and finally stopped breathing. 18 She said to Elijah, “What do you have against me, man of God? Did you come to remind me of my sin and kill my son?”
– 1 kings 17:17-18 (NIV)
19 “Give me your son,” Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed. 20 Then he cried out to the Lord, “Lord my God, have you brought tragedy even on this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?” 21 Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried out to the Lord, “Lord my God, let this boy’s life return to him!” 22 The Lord heard Elijah’s cry, and the boy’s life returned to him, and he lived.
– 1 kings 17:19-22 (NIV)
23 Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, “Look, your son is alive!” 24 Then the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the Lord from your mouth is the truth.”
– 1 kings 17:23-24 (NIV)

Things to Remember:

Even when we are obedient to God, it does not mean that bad things won’t happen. But we must continue to trust in him.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.
– Psalms 42:5 (NIV)

No matter what we must stand firm! Because there is an end to the storm.



Originally Taught On: May 29th 2016
Pastor: Jim Olson

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