Elijah the Tishbite, an inhabitant of Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the Lord lives, the God of Israel whom I serve, there will be no dew or rain except at my bidding.” The word of the Lord came to him: “Leave this place; turn eastward and go into hiding by the Wadi Cherith, which is east of the Jordan.     1 Kings 17/1-3 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

Much later, in the third year, the word of the Lord came to Elijah: “Go, appear before Ahab; then I will send rain upon the earth.”     1 Kings 18/1 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

Elijah heard this, wrapped his mantle about his face and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave where a voice addressed him (which is the Lord): “Why are you here, Elijah?”

Elijah answers and the Lord instructs him to go to Damascus and anoint Hazael as King of Aram, Jehu as King of Israel, and Elisha as the prophet to succeed him.   1 Kings 19/8-16 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

19He [Elijah] set out from there and came upon Elisha son of Shaphat as he was plowing. There were twelve yoke of oxen ahead of him, and he was with the twelfth. Elijah came over to him and threw his mantle over him. 20He left the oxen and ran after Elijah, saying: “Let me kiss my father and mother good-by, and I will follow you.” And he answered him, “Go back. What have I done to you?” 21He turned back from him and took the yoke of oxen and slaughtered them; he boiled their meat with the gear of the oxen and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he arose and followed Elijah and became his attendant.     1 Kings 19/19-21 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

13He picked up Elijah’s mantle, which had dropped from him; and he went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. 14Taking the mantle which had dropped from Elijah, he struck the water and said, “Where is the Lord, the God of Elijah?” As he too struck the water, it parted to the right and to the left, and Elisha crossed over.     ll Kings 2/13-14 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

7Elisha arrived in Damascus at a time when King Ben-hadad of Aram was ill. The king was told, “The man of God is on his way here,” 8and he said to Hazael, “Take a gift with you and go meet the man of God, and through him inquire of the Lord: Will I recover from this illness?” 9Hazael went to meet him, taking with him as a gift forty camel-loads of all the bounty of Damascus. He came and stood before him and said, “Your son, King Ben-hadad of Aram, has sent me to you to ask: Will I recover from this illness?” 10Elisha said to him, “Go and say to him, ‘You will recover.’ However, the Lord has revealed to me that he will die.” 11The man of God kept his face expressionless for a long time; and then he wept. 12“Why does my lord weep?” asked Hazael. “Because I know,” he replied, “what harm you will do to the Israelite people: you will set their fortresses on fire, put their young men to the sword, dash their little ones in pieces, and rip open their pregnant women.” 13“But how,” asked Hazael, “can your servant, who is a mere dog, perform such a mighty deed?” Elisha replied, “The Lord has shown me a vision of you as king of Aram.” 14He left Elisha and returned to his master, who asked him, “What did Elisha say to you?” He replied, “He told me that you would recover.” 15The next day, [Hazael] took a piece of netting, dipped it in water, and spread it over his face. So [Ben-hadad] died, and Hazael succeeded him as king.     ll Kings 8/7-15 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

1Then the prophet Elisha summoned one of the disciples of the prophets and said to him, “Tie up your skirts, and take along this flask of oil, and go to Ramoth-gilead. 2When you arrive there, go and see Jehu son of Jehoshaphat son of Nimshi; get him to leave his comrades, and take him into an inner room. 3Then take the flask of oil and pour some on his head, and say, ‘Thus said the Lord: I anoint you king over Israel.’ Then open the door and flee without delay.”

4The young man, the servant of the prophet, went to Ramoth-gilead. 5When he arrived, the army commanders were sitting together. He said, “Commander, I have a message for you.” “For which one of us?” Jehu asked. He answered, “For you, commander.” 6So [Jehu] arose and went inside; and [the disciple] poured the oil on his head, and said to him, “Thus said the Lord, the God of Israel: I anoint you king over the people of the Lord, over Israel. 7You shall strike down the House of Ahab your master; thus will I avenge on Jezebel the blood of My servants the prophets, and the blood of the other servants of the Lord. 8The whole House of Ahab shall perish, and I will cut off every male belonging to Ahab, bond and free in Israel. 9I will make the House of Ahab like the House of Jeroboam son of Nebat, and like the House of Baasha son of Ahijah. 10The dogs shall devour Jezebel in the field of Jezreel, with none to bury her.” Then he opened the door and fled.

11Jehu went out to the other officers of his master, and they asked him, “Is all well? What did that madman come to you for?” He said to them, “You know the man and his ranting!” 12“You’re lying,” they said. “Tell us [the truth].” Then he replied, “Thus and thus he said: Thus said the Lord: I anoint you king over Israel!” 13Quickly each man took his cloak and placed it under him, on the top step. They sounded the horn and proclaimed, “Jehu is king!” 14Thus Jehu son of Jehoshaphat son of Nimshi conspired against Joram.     ll Kings 9/1-14 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

8Gilead is a city of evildoers,
Tracked up with blood.     Hosea 6/8 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

32In those days the Lord began to reduce Israel; and Hazael harassed them throughout the territory of Israel 33east of the Jordan, all the land of Gilead—the Gadites, the Reubenites, and the Manassites—from Aroer, by the Wadi Arnon, up to Gilead and Bashan.     ll Kings 10/32-33 Tanakh JPS 1985.

 

Commentary:

The first time that we see Elijah the Tishbite in the Tanakh he is speaking to King Ahab of the northern kingdom of Israel. There is no history of who he is by family or heritage or when G-d first came to him to make Elijah His servant.

There are no Tishbites among the tribes of Israel and he is an inhabitant of Gilead which is east of the Jordan, all the land of the Gadites, the Reubenites, and the Manassites from Aroer, by the Wadi Arnon, up to Gilead and Bashan. Elijah is not a descendant of Manasseh, Gad or Reuben according to the genealogy of the Tanakh.

There is no reason to believe Elijah was Jewish by birth. If Elijah was Jewish the story goes out of its way to tell us he was not in the first sentence. Maybe he had a Jewish soul placed within him by G-d. Maybe serving G-d as a prophet constitutes being Jewish except that would make Moshiach Cyrus of Persia Jewish and I have seen no Talmudic reference to that being considered.

The comment by Elisha “Where is the Lord, the G-d of Elijah” is more than an indication that Elisha did not know the Lord as the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob the Jewish people who are Israel. It is an indication that he too is not Jewish.

The last tasks G-d assigned to Elijah were to go to Damascus and anoint Hazael as King of Aram, Jehu as King of Israel, and Elisha as the prophet to succeed him. Elisha completes these tasks for Elijah after Elijah anoints him as his successor on the road to Damascus in or about Aram.

Elijah is the righteous servant of G-d described in Isaiah 53. This chapter is the basis for the false beliefs in Jesus who claimed to be that man and upon which Christianity is built as a religion of G-d’s human sacrifice of His son for the forgiveness of sins and the teachings of the New Testament that the sacrifice was not just for the Jewish people.

G-d knew when He had Isaiah write chapter 53 what the gentiles would do with it and He knew when Elijah His righteous servant returned he would make the many righteous. Elijah arrives as a sign and herald of the new covenant of sin forgiveness of the Jewish people and as a teacher to reconcile the Jewish people to G-d and Judaism.

The many to be made righteous are primarily Christians and gentiles who come to believe in the G-d of Israel and Elijah as a result of the arrival of Elijah and G-d dwelling upon the earth again and speaking to His prophets. Gentiles who realize that G-d did not sacrifice His son for their sins and that G-d cannot be a man.

This is why Elijah is a gentile, in the beginning. It gives him a better understanding of Christians and Christianity to make the many righteous. The gentiles who can believe in G-d and follow His commandments to the world without the New Testament and the sacrifice of Jesus. Those commandments are basically the ten commandments Moses brought down from Sinai and the stories of G-d’s forgiveness of breaking the commandments with atonement, repentance and prayer.

Elijah has to convert to Judaism and become an Israeli for many reasons including the fulfillment of the prophecy of Moses of G-d raising up a prophet like Moses from the Jewish people.

The G-d of Elijah is like the G-d of Righteousness or G-d of Peace a descriptive name. The God of mankind that formed Israel to be the G-d of Israel for His name and praise throughout the world.

G-d knew all things from the beginning. He thought creation through to the end before He ever spoke His first word to mankind including the substance of the Tanakh and specifically chapter 53 of the book of Isaiah.

The entire Tanakh was set up for this moment in time. The time of Elijah. Not by miracles but by the words of the prophets of G-d and Elijah’s interpretations of them as they have never been interpreted before.

These writings are the writings of the prophet Elijah. G-d is telling me what to type word by word.

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