1 Kings 19

Study the Inner Meaning

English: King James Version

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1 And Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and withal how he had slain all the prophets with the sword.

2 Then Jezebel sent a messenger unto Elijah, saying, So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I make not thy life as the life of one of them by to morrow about this time.

3 And when he saw that, he arose, and went for his life, and came to Beer-sheba, which belongeth to Judah, and left his servant there.

4 But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers.

5 And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat.

6 And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baken on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again.

7 And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee.

8 And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God.

9 And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah?

10 And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.

11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake:

12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

13 And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?

14 And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: because the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.

15 And the LORD said unto him, Go, return on thy way to the wilderness of Damascus: and when thou comest, anoint Hazael to be king over Syria:

16 And Jehu the son of Nimshi shalt thou anoint to be king over Israel: and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah shalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room.

17 And it shall come to pass, that him that escapeth the sword of Hazael shall Jehu slay: and him that escapeth from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha slay.

18 Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him.

19 So he departed thence, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed by him, and cast his mantle upon him.

20 And he left the oxen, and ran after Elijah, and said, Let me, I pray thee, kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow thee. And he said unto him, Go back again: for what have I done to thee?

21 And he returned back from him, and took a yoke of oxen, and slew them, and boiled their flesh with the instruments of the oxen, and gave unto the people, and they did eat. Then he arose, and went after Elijah, and ministered unto him.

← 1 Kings 18   1 Kings 20 →
   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Explanations or references:

Arcana Coelestia 2463, 2723, 3574, 3703, 5895, 7857, 8823, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 132, 328, 348, 779


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 160, 375, 395, 430, 701, 750

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Genesis 16:8, 21:31, 31:28

Exodus 3:1, 6, 24:18

Numbers 11:15, 25:13

Deuteronomy 4:11, 12, 15

Judges 6:11

1 Samuel 27:1

2 Samuel 24:22

1 Kings 1:34, 2:23, 4:12, 17:4, 6, 9, 18:22, 30, 40

2 Kings 2:1, 8, 13, 3:11, 6:31, 8:8, 13, 15, 9:2, 3, 6, 12, 24, 10:16

Nehemiah 9:26

Job 6:8, 9, 31:27

Psalms 68:9, 78:37, 119:26, 126, 139

Isaiah 49:4

Jeremiah 2:30, 20:18

Ezekiel 1:4

Hosea 13:2

Amos 7:14, 15

Jonah 4:3, 8

Nahum 1:3, 6

Zechariah 4:6

Matthew 2, 22, 9:9

Mark 13, 12:3, 4, 5

Luke 9:59, 61, 22:43

John 7:1

Acts of the Apostles 12:7, 23:12

Romans 11:2, 3, 4

Philippians 2:22

Hebrews 1:14, 11:37

Word/Phrase Explanations

Ahab
(1 Kings 22:39) signifies man as to the rational principle

Jezebel
'Jezebel' signifies faith separate from charity. Jezebel' signifies those who are in the doctrine of every falsity from the pleasures of self-love and the love...

Elijah
Elijah (referred to as Elias in the New Testament) was the renowned prophet sent to the split kingdoms of Israel and Judah. His first appearance...

Slain
'The slain' when referring to the Lord, as in Revelation 5, means the separation of everything from the divine. In denial of His divinity, He...

prophets
The idea of a "prophet" is very closely tied to the idea of the Bible itself, since the Bible was largely written by prophets. At...

Sword
A 'sword,' in the Word, signifies the truth of faith combating and the vastation of truth. In an opposite sense, it signifies falsity combating and...

Sent
'Being sent' everywhere signifies, in an internal sense, going forth, as in John 17:8. In similar manner, it is said of the holy of the...

Messenger
'A messenger' signifies communication.

gods
The Lord is called "Jehovah" in the Bible when the text is referring to his essence, which is love itself. He is called "God" when...

Make
'To make,' as in Hosea 8:11, refers to good. In the opposite sense it refers to evil. To make heaven, and earth, and the sea,...

life
In John 14:6, 'the way is doctrine,' 'the truth' is every thing pertaining to doctrine, and 'the life' is the essential good which is the...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

time
Time is an aspect of the physical world, but according to Swedenborg is not an aspect of the spiritual world. The same is true of...

saw
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

came
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

Sheba
'Sheba, Havilah, Sabthah, Regmah, and Sabthecha,' the sons of Cush, as in Genesis 10:7, were several nations which were did not have internal worship, but...

Judah
City of Judah,' as in Isaiah 40:9, signifies the doctrine of love towards the Lord and love towards our neighbor in its whole extent.

servant
“Servant” literally means “a person who serves another,"" and its meaning is similar in reference to the spiritual meaninngs of the Bible. Our lives in...

Journey
'To journey' signifies the institutes and order of life.

wilderness
'The wilderness of Sin,' as in Exodus 16, signifies the good from truth in a state of temptation.

sat
If you think about sitting, it seems fair to say that where you're sitting is more important than that you're sitting. Sitting in a movie...

down
"Down" is used many different ways in natural language, and its spiritual meaning in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Phrases like "bowing down,"...

under
Generally speaking things that are seen as lower physically in the Bible represent things that are lower or more external spiritually. In some cases this...

tree
In general, plants in the Bible represent facts, thoughts and ideas – intellectual things. This makes sense: Plants are rooted in place, but can grow...

Might
'Might' denotes the forces or power of truth.

die
Death in the Bible represents spiritual death, or the destruction of everything that is good and all true beliefs in someone. This happens when people...

said
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

Enough
'Sufficiency' relates to the reception of good, because good is the spiritual nourishment of the soul, as natural food is the nourishment of the body.

angel
"Angels" in the Bible represent qualities of the Lord himself, or a variety of things that come directly from the Lord. On a lower level...

touched
Imagine having your mother touch your cheek. Then imagine having your spouse or someone you love romantically touch your cheek. Then imagine having a baby...

eat
When we eat, our bodies break down the food and get from it both energy and materials for building and repairing the body. The process...

Cake
Cake denotes the conjunction of the spiritual and celestial principles, which appertained to the Lord, (Gen. 18:16.)

Coals
Coals of fire being scattered over the cities (Ezek. 10:1, 7), signify that men were to be left to their wild lusts, rather than they...

water
Water was obviously of tremendous importance in Biblical times (and every other time). It is the basis of life, the essential ingredient in all drinks,...

head
The head is the part of us that is highest, which means in a representative sense that it is what is closest to the Lord....

drink
Food in the Bible represents the desire for good, and water and other drinks represent the understanding and true ideas we need to recognize what...

the Lord
The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

second
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

Strength
Strength' relates truth and falsity. Strength,' as in Luke 10:27, signifies the will and understanding extended to extremes. Strength,' as in Revelation 1:6, signifies divine...

meat
'Provision' or 'meat,' as in Genesis 42:25 and Psalm 78:25, signifies support from truth and good.

forty
'Forty' means completeness because 'four' means what is complete, as does 'ten.' Forty is the product of four and ten. Compound numbers have a meaning...

days
"Day" describes a state in which we are turned toward the Lord, and are receiving light (which is truth) and heat (which is a desire...

mount
'Mount Olivet' signifies the celestial church, or celestial good, which comes from love towards the Lord, and divine love.

God
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

the Word
In general, we tend to be very aware of how knowing what's true leads to doing what is good. That starts as children, with parents...

Word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

Jealous
Jealous' or 'zealous,' in Genesis 30:1, signifies an aspect of indignation.

Hosts
When the divine power of good or omnipotence is being discussed in the Word, then says 'Jehovah Zebaoth,' or 'Jehovah of hosts,' and also 'Lord,'...

children
A child is a young boy or girl in the care of parents, older than a suckling or an infant, but not yet an adolescent....

Israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

covenant
A covenant is a promise by the Lord about something He will do, or not do. He promised Noah that He would never again destroy...

seek
The meaning of "to seek" in the Bible is pretty straightforward, but there is a bit of nuance: Swedenborg tells us that in most cases...

Go forth
To go forth, as in Genesis 19:14, signifies to recede from, or not to remain in [evil]. To go forth, as in Genesis 41:45, denotes...

go
In the physical world, the places we inhabit and the distances between them are physical realities, and we have to get our physical bodies through...

Stand
'To stand,' and 'come forth' as in Daniel 7:10, refers to truth. In Genesis 24:13, it signifies a state of conjunction of divine truth with...

upon
'Upon' or 'over' signifies being within.

before
In most cases, the meaning of "before" is pretty straightforward, both as a way of assessing relative time, and in its use meaning "in someone's...

Passed
'Passed' or 'expired' denotes the conclusion of whatever state is being discussed.

Strong
In the Word, people who trust to themselves and their own intelligence are sometimes called 'strong,' as in Isaiah 1:31. This is because they suppose...

Wind
Because a nearer and stronger divine influx through the heavens disperses truths among the wicked, 'wind' signifies this dispersion of truth and the resulting conjunction...

Rent
'To rend the garments' signifies mourning for truth lost or destroyed, or the loss of faith.

mountains
The Writings tell us that the Lord's love is the sun of heaven, and it is natural for us to look above ourselves to the...

pieces
The two sticks, in Ezekiel 37:16-22, signify the celestial and spiritual kingdom of the Lord.

Rocks
'Rocks' signify the good and truth of faith.

fire
Just as natural fire can be both comforting in keeping you warm or scary in burning down your house, so fire in the spiritual sense...

still
When something is described as quiet, still or calm in the Bible, it represents the state of peace that comes with being aligned with the...

Voice
'Voice' signifies what is announced from the Word. 'Voice' often refers and is applied to things that cannot have a voice, as in Exodus 4,...

heard
Thanks to modern science, we now understand that hearing actually happens in the brain, not the ears. The ears collect vibrations in the air and...

face
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

Damascus
Damascus and Aroer (Isaiah 17:1, 2) signify the knowledges of truth and good. See Eliezer of Damascus.

anoint
Oil in the Bible represents the Lord’s love, so anointing someone (or something) with oil was a way to make that person (or object) a...

king
The human mind is composed of two parts, a will and an understanding, a seat of loves and affections, and a seat of wisdom and...

over
Over' or 'upon' in the Word, signifies being within, because the highest part in successive order becomes inmost in simultaneous order. This is why the...

Syria
'Syria,' as in Ezekiel 27:16, signifies the church regarding knowledges of truth and good.

Son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

elisha
The Bible in its literal sense – the words we see, the stories we read – is a sort of container for the divine things...

Abel
Abel signifies charity or love, in Genesis 4:2. (Divine Providence 242, Arcana Coelestia 325, and 341). Abel signifies celestial love, which is loving the Lord....

Room
'A room' or 'place' denotes state.

Pass
'To pass,' as in Genesis 31:52, signifies flowing in. 'To pass the night,' as in Genesis 24:54, signifies having peace. 'To pass through,' as in...

Slay
'To slay' or 'to kill' in the Word, means destroying souls, which is spiritually killing.

Seven
The number 'seven' was considered holy, as is well known, because of the six days of creation, and the seventh, which is the celestial self,...

thousand
As children, most of us at some point frustrated our mothers into using the phrase “if I've told you once, I've told you a thousand...

bowed
To bow in prayer is common in most religious practices, so it's not surprising that “to bow” in the Bible represents humility and worship in...

mouth
In most cases, "mouth" in the Bible represents thought and logic, especially the kind of active, concrete thought that is connected with speech. The reason...

Twelve
'Twelve' signifies all aspects of faith. This has been unknown to the world until now. Nevertheless, this is the constant significance of 'twelve,' anywhere it...

Oxen
'Oxen' or 'calves' signify the affections of the natural mind.

cast
For something to be cast down or cast out generally refers to a rather dramatic move from a higher spiritual state to a lower one....

Kiss
To kiss' signifies uniting or conjunction from affection. To kiss,' as in c, signifies initiation. 'To kiss' signifies conjunction and acknowledgment.

father
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

mother
In general, mothers in the Bible represent the Lord's church on earth, or the church among those who know and follow the Lord. In some...

follow
The basic meaning of "follow" in the Bible is pretty obvious if we consider what it means to "follow the Lord." That obviously doesn't mean...

back
There are many instances in the Bible which describe people turning back, looking back or going back. In most cases it is a negative, sometimes...

flesh
'A sinew' signifies truth, because truths are in good like sinews in flesh. This is what is being described in Ezekiel 37:6, 8.

Instruments
Instruments of music,' according to correspondences, signify the pleasant and delightful affection of spiritual and celestial things. Therefore, also in many of the Psalms of...

people
"Man" is a tricky word to discuss, because the Hebrew of the Old Testament uses six different words that are generally translated as "man," with...

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library by following this link.


 Angel Helps Elijah
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 17

 Arise and Eat
Look back on a challenging time in your life and reflect on (or write about) how the Lord and His angels may have been giving you the encouragement and spiritual nourishment you needed
Activity | Ages over 15

 Elijah
This lesson discusses a story from the Word and suggests projects and activities for young children.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Elijah at Horeb
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 Elijah at Horeb (3-5 years)
Project | Ages 4 - 6

 Elijah at Horeb (6-8 years)
Project | Ages 7 - 10

 Elijah at Horeb (9-11 years)
Project | Ages 11 - 14

 Elijah in the Cave - Level A
Complete lesson with activity choices: art project on the inside and outside of the cave, acting out a journey to Mount Horeb, scripted story discussion, coloring page, and a memory verse.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Elijah in the Cave - Level B
Complete lesson with activity choices: folded paper game of the Lord's presence on the mountain, acting script, scripted story discussion, coloring page, and a memory verse.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Elijah in the Cave - Level C
Complete lesson with activity choices: discussion on the forces of nature (wind, earthquake, fire) and what they represent, make a cave out from a egg, scripted story discussion, and a meditation and task on a verse from the Word.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 11 - 14

 Elijah in the Cave - Level D
Complete lesson with activity choices: paired activity on Elijah's 3 sources of food in famines, finding the still small voice of conscience, scripted story discussion, and a meditation and task on a verse from the Word.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 15 - 17

 Elisha is Called, Elijah Ascends to Heaven
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Overview of The Story of Elijah Levels A B C D for ages 3-18
Overview of the Youth Journey Program "The Story of Elijah", Levels A, B, C, D for ages 3-18.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 3 - 18

 Questions Asked by God
Article | Ages over 15

 Quotes: Our Guardian Angels
Teaching Support | Ages over 15

 The Angel and Elijah
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 The Angel Woke Elijah
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14


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