- Psalm 143
- 1 Kings 17:17-24
- Acts 20:7-12
I Kings 17:17-24
As we read the Bible we see that it was created by many authors, whose writings were modified by unknown scribes. What they have in common is that the actors and the writers are attempting to define who and what God is. Everyone wants God to be a part of them, so they seek assurances that God interacts with humans. The other half of the syllogism is that they become co-creators with God. They are part of God. In this story, written by unknown authors, Elijah acts as the hands of God in creating food where the family had none (previous verses) and then saves the life of the son by acting as a life giving force, with the power of God passing through him. The act of using his body to revive someone is a powerful and familiar theme in the Bible. Jesus uses similar miracles to save lives in the Newer Testament. We, in the 21st century, still have faith that God’s power can be passed through us, as is evidenced by the use of “Healing Touch” and “Reiki”, as well as other faith based processes.
The woman implies that she is being punished for a sin, which causes her son to become ill. We do not know what the sin is, nor why God should choose to punish her by taking the life of her son. Also implied in the story is forgiveness, a common element in our search for God. Forgiveness is implied because her son’s life is spared. And she comes to believe that Elijah is the voice of God.
The story is from the writings of Luke, but we do not know if Luke actually wrote the story.
This is one of the passages where we discover that there is humour in the Bible. Perhaps there is a great deal of humour in the Bible that we do not discover because we tend to read it in such a serious manner. Paul is preaching for many hours and one of his younger listeners, sitting on a ledge, drifts off to sleep and falls onto the ground below, supposedly three stories. Perhaps this is a recollection of boring preachers or a warning to preachers to be succinct. Have we ever drifted off while listening to a sermon? Other followers are relieved when Paul picks the boy up and declares that he is alive. The action of providing life-saving through the prophet was displayed by Elijah, and now through Paul and we are reminded of Jesus saving the life of Jairus’ daughter in Luke 8:52. We are surprised that Paul spends little time with the boy, and we chuckle again as we are told that Paul continues to preach through the night. How many others fell asleep?
There is inspiration as life saving forces are manifested through humans and provide hope that we too can pass on energy from God. ♥
by Rev. Gordon Hunter