“Look, I am sending you the prophet Elijah before the great and dreadful day of the LORD arrives. His preaching will turn the hearts of fathers to their children, and the hearts of children to their fathers.” – Malachi 4:5-6

The prophet Elijah is one of the most influential prophets in the Hebrew Bible. According to the Scripture, Elijah is so important that he alone will have the honor of ushering in the arrival of the Messiah (Malachi 4:5-6).

It is not surprising, therefore, that Elijah is the model for the numerous prophets that came after him, including John the Baptist. How did he become so distinguished? What made him the extraordinary figure he was?

Elijah lived in the Kingdom of Israel 3,000 years ago. The king at the time, Ahab, tried hard to promote the pagan cult of Baal. Singlehandedly, Elijah rejected this idolatry and won. How did he do it? The secret to his success is in his name. In one of the most famous Biblical stories, Elijah challenged the prophets of Baal to a contest on Mount Carmel.

Naturally, Baal never showed up. But the true Lord consumed Elijah’s sacrifice in a flash of fire. The people were stunned and exclaimed “the Lord indeed is God!” (1 Kings 18:39). In Hebrew this phrase contains the same two words that make up the name Elijah (יְהוָה הוּא הָאֱלֹהִים). The name Elijah, Eliyahu (אליהו) in Hebrew, is composed of two Hebrew words: Eli (אלי), meaning ”my God” and Yahu (יהו), a part of the Hebrew name of the Lord YHWH (יהוה).

It is fitting that Elijah is called “My God is the Lord”, because he alone saves the worship of the one true God by vanquishing the prophets of Baal. In the Bible, someone’s name tells us about their history, their intentions, and what God has in store for them. – Yoel Adler

I give You my life today. My will is Yours. Please create a new path for me, release me from the mess I find myself in. Release me from the pain and doubt I have felt and directed towards You. I trust You to do as You have promised: You will make a way for me! Thank you for leading the way, no matter what terrible things I do, think or say. Amen.
Oct 3 2018