The Cries of Elijah in Prayer Brings Dead Child to Life



1 Kings 17: 20, 21

Then he cried out to the LORD and said, “O LORD my God, have You also brought tragedy on the widow with whom I lodge, by killing her son?” 21 And he stretched himself out on the child three times, and cried out to the LORD and said, “O LORD my God, I pray, let this child’s soul come back to him.”

Here we see that Elijah was living with a widow in Zarephath; for God had called him to go and live there with her.  And God miraculously provided for Elijah and for the woman and her household.  But one day the son of the woman became very sick and died.  And (as verse 18 indicates) she supposed that his death was due to her sin and to the punishment drawn toward her by the presence of Elijah, the “man of God.”  Thus she said, “Have you come to bring my sin to remembrance and to kill my son?”

At that point Elijah could have taken offence, for it seemed that she was blaming him.  But instead he took action to restore the child to life.  He immediately took him and carried him up to his room and laid him on his bed.  And he prayed saying, “‘Oh Lord my God, hast Thou also brought calamity to the widow with whom I am staying by causing her son to die’ (NASB)?  Then he stretched himself upon the child three times and called to the Lord and said, ‘O LORD my God, I pray, let this child’s soul come back to him.’ And then in verse 22 it says, “Then the LORD heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came back to him, and he revived” (NKJV).

In verse twenty, it almost seems as if Elijah is bitter and angry with God.  However, I think he was questioning what happened to the child in order to draw out God’s compassion.  Thus, what he was really saying to God is, “Lord your grace is too good; You are too compassionate to let the child die.”  Keil and Delitzsch suggest the meaning is, “Thou, O Lord my God, according to Thy grace and righteousness, canst not possibly leave the son of this widow in death.”  Here Keil and Delitzsch states about this prayer, “Such confident belief carries within itself the certainty of being heard.”

 This is an excerpt from my book Prayer A to Z: A Comprehensive Bible-Based Study of Prayer.

About Stephen Nielsen

I'm an author, a self publisher, and a painting contractor. I live in beautiful Minnesota, USA . Welcome to my blog site.
This entry was posted in Part 4, Elijah to Daniel, Prayer A to Z Excerpts, Survey of Prayer and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to The Cries of Elijah in Prayer Brings Dead Child to Life

  1. Heidi Viars says:

    Thanks for sharing, Stephen! What powerful faith this man of God had!

  2. I have oft thought about the singular power that prayers hold for us. Is this an aspect of our faith or something more magical that we sense in that moment?

    Thank you for sharing.


  3. The power of prayer that Elijah experienced may for us seem uncommon and even magical, but it is all of faith. But I think faith has deeper levels. And the more we believe in Him and trust Him the more we will experience HIs power. If we are His disciple and daily obey Him then we are called His friends, and He will share His life with us as a friend, and He will give to us the things we ask Him for–because He loves us and He knows that we love Him (read John 15:14-16). Have a good day Shakti and thanks for commenting.

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