Depressed People Of the Bible: Elijah’s Highs and Lows

April 2024

   Elijah’s story goes from a mountaintop experience down to a suicidal desire.

   Elijah told King Ahab that because of his sins it was not going to rain. That took either chutzpah or tremendous faith, or both.

   Elijah hid by a brook where God used ravens to bring Elijah food. Eventually the brook dried up. God sent Elijah to the home of a widow whose flour and oil miraculously never ran out. The widow’s son died and Elijah witnessed God raise him from the dead.

   Ahab wanted to kill Elijah. After the three and half years of no rain, God called Elijah to return to rebuke Ahab again. Ahab put all the blame on the messenger. Elijah told him it was the king’s sins in forsaking the commandments of God that had caused the troubles. What boldness, what faith, what confidence.

   Elijah told Ahab to call all the pagan prophets to meet him on Mount Carmel. Elijah called to the people, “How long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” Elijah turned to the pagan prophets and challenged them to a contest. Both were to build altars to their God, and whichever God answered by fire was the true God. The pagan prophets put their bull upon their altar. For hours they danced, cutting themselves, and calling out to their god. Nothing happened. El ...

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