Ahab told Jezebel what Elijah had done on Mount Carmel. He told her how all the prophets of Baal had been killed. Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah. She said, “I am going to kill you! Mark my word. You’ll be dead before tomorrow night.”
This struck fear in the heart of Elijah. He ran away to save his life. He left Israel and went to the southern part of Judah. He left his servant there and went on into the wilderness. He walked for another day and finally stopped and sat under a juniper tree.
He cried, “What have I done! I’m no better than my fathers. Lord, take my life” Then he lay down and fell asleep.
After he’d slept a while, an angel touched him. “Get up and eat.” Elijah woke up and saw a jug of water and some bread baking over hot coals. He ate the bread and drank the water and fell back to sleep.
Later, the angel of the Lord woke him again and said, “Get up and eat. You have a long trip ahead of you.”
Elijah woke up and once again found bread and water. So he got up, ate the bread and drank water. He then walked 40 days and 40 nights to Horeb, the mountain of God, also called Mt. Sinai. Once there, he entered a cave and spent the night.
In the morning the Lord said to him, “Elijah, what are you doing here?”
He said, “Lord, I’ve worked for you with all my heart. But Israel has forgotten their agreement with you. They’ve torn down your altars. They killed your prophets. I’m the last one, and they’re trying to kill me.”
The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain.” Suddenly, a powerful wind hit the mountains and shattered rocks. But the Lord wasn’t in the wind.
Then there was an earthquake. But the Lord wasn’t in the earthquake.
After that, there was a blast of fire. But the Lord wasn’t in the fire.
Then Elijah heard a soft whisper. He wrapped his mantle around his face and went out of the cave and stood at the entrance.The voice said to him, “Elijah, what are you doing here?”
“Lord, I’ve worked for you with all my heart. But Israel has forgotten their agreement with you. They’ve torn down your altars, and killed your prophets. I’m the last one, and they’re trying to kill me.”
The Lord said, “Oh Elijah, go back home. I have 7,000 men in Israel who haven’t bowed to Baal.” He then gave the prophet detailed instructions of what he was to do, which included anointing Elisha to replace him and selecting a new king for Israel.
Elijah went back to Israel where he found Elisha plowing a field. The prophet walked up to him and threw his mantle over him and walked on. Elisha left the oxen and ran to catch up with the prophet. He said, “Please, let me say good-bye to my father and mother. Then I’ll follow you.”
Elijah turned and said, “You may go back, but don’t forget the calling that is now yours.”
With that, Elisha took the wooden yoke and plow and built a fire. He killed the oxen and made a meal for his family. When they were done eating, he left them and followed Elijah.