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The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

Chapter 19

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Flight to Horeb. 1Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done—that he had put all the prophets to the sword. 2Jezebel then sent a messenger to Elijah and said, “May the gods do thus and so to me if by this time tomorrow I have not done with your life what was done to each of them.” 3Elijah was afraid and fled for his life, going to Beer-sheba of Judah. He left his servant there 4and went a day's journey into the desert, until he came to a broom tree and sat beneath it. He prayed for death: “This is enough, O LORD! Take my life, for I am no better than my fathers.” 5He lay down and fell asleep under the broom tree, but then an angel touched him and ordered him to get up and eat. 6He looked and there at his head was a hearth cake and a jug of water. After he ate and drank, he lay down again, 7but the angel of the LORD came back a second time, touched him, and ordered, “Get up and eat, else the journey will be too long for you!” 8He got up, ate and drank; then strengthened by that food, he walked forty days and forty nights to the mountain of God, Horeb.

9There he came to a cave, where he took shelter. But the word of the LORD came to him, “Why are you here, Elijah?” 10He answered: “I have been most zealous for the LORD, the God of hosts, but the Israelites have forsaken your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to the sword. I alone am left, and they seek to take my life.” 11 * Then the LORD said, “Go outside and stand on the mountain before the LORD; the LORD will be passing by.” A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains and crushing rocks before the LORD—but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake—but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12After the earthquake there was fire—but the LORD was not in the fire. After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound. 13When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went and stood at the entrance of the cave. A voice said to him, “Elijah, why are you here?” 14He replied, “I have been most zealous for the LORD, the God of hosts. But the Israelites have forsaken your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to the sword. I alone am left, and they seek to take my life.” r Rom 11, 3 . 15 * “Go, take the road back to the desert near Damascus,” the LORD said to him. “When you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael as king of Aram. 16Then you shall anoint Jehu, son of Nimshi, as king of-Israel, and Elisha, son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah, as prophet to succeed you. s 2 Kgs 9, 2 . 17If anyone escapes the sword of Hazael, Jehu will kill him. If he escapes the sword of Jehu, Elisha will kill him. 18Yet I will leave seven thousand men in Israel—all those who have not knelt to Baal or kissed him.” t Rom 11, 4 .

Call of Elisha. * 19Elijah set out, and came upon Elisha, son of Shaphat, as he was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen; he was following the twelfth. Elijah went over to him and threw his cloak over him. 20Elisha left the oxen, ran after Elijah, and said, “Please, let me kiss my father and mother goodbye, and I will follow you.” “Go back!” Elijah answered. “Have I done anything to you?” 21Elisha left him and, taking the yoke of oxen, slaughtered them; he used the plowing equipment for fuel to boil their flesh, and gave it to his people to eat. Then he left and followed Elijah as his attendant.

Notes:

r: Rom 11, 3 .

s: 2 Kgs 9, 2 .

t: Rom 11, 4 .

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