The prophet Elijah of Israel basically invited 450 prophets of Baal and another 400 prophets of Asherah (who were tight with Queen Jezebel – hater), to meet him after school one day for a smack down on Mt. Carmel.
Elijah also invited all of his homeboys and homegirls to watch the fight (1Kings 18:19).
Meanwhile, Queen Jezebel, was doing all she could to wipe out the prophets to the people of Israel (she married into the family via King Ahab – a political alliance, which ended up with Israel worshiping Jezebel’s gods).
At the hours-long prophetic smack down on Mt. Carmel—standing room only—basically, Elijah called down some Divine fire which consumed all of the sacrificial offerings of his 850 adversaries, then had them dragged off and killed (today’s reality TV can’t touch this!).
When Jezebel found out what Elijah had done, her knickers got into a major wad.
1Kings:19: 1Now Ahab told Jezebel everything Elijah had done and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. 2 So Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah to say, “May the gods deal with me, be it ever so severely, if by this time tomorrow I do not make your life like that of one of them.”
(Whoaaa! All this time I thought Jezebel was just a skank! She was gangsta!)
After having been anointed to beat down 850 prophets of lesser gods, Elijah was terrified of Jezebel and ran like Kunte Kinte at sundown. Continuing, 1Kings 19:
3 Elijah was afraid and ran for his life. When he came to Beersheba in Judah, he left his servant there, 4 while he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness. He came to a broom bush, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.” 5 Then he lay down under the bush and fell asleep. (Can I get a witness?!).
Poor Elijah, lost his grit (“salt”, I should say). Where this ends up for Elijah is an encounter with God—still in 1Kings 19:
11 The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake.12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
God was not in the powerful wind. God was not in the earthquake. God was not in the fire – “After the fire came a gentle whisper… [and]Elijah heard it.”
Note to self: When everything seems to be in an uproar, perhaps, sometimes, I should just keep still and listen.