"Great Catch of Fish," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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God’s Care for the Widow
1 Kings 17:1-16 [17-24] Commentary
by Sara Koenig
It is much easier to talk about trust -- confidence in God’s goodness and provision in the face of despair and doubt -- than it is to live it.
This chapter contains three related stories about how God’s provision is not ultimate. The brook dries up. The jar of oil is about to run out. The widow’s son dies. But then, God provides again. As Elijah trusts God, he must also live on the edge of that trust, that when something else happens, God will again come through.
The first story begins as Elijah tells King Ahab, “As the LORD the God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years except by my word” (1 Kings 17:1). After Elijah proclaims his word, God gives a word to him, directing him to hide by the Wadi Cherith, east of the Jordan. This is about a 30 mile journey from Samaria, not an unsubstantial journey. Cherith is, however, not far from Gilead, so it could have been a familiar place to Elijah. At this place, Elijah drinks from the river, and God has commanded ravens provide him food. Ravens are among the birds that God forbids the people of Israel to eat (Leviticus ...
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Summer 2020 Readings
2020-21 Readings (Year 3)
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL238: God's Care for the Widow
October 30, 2016
This Narrative Lectionary podcast discusses 1 Kings 17:1-16 [17-24], the reading for Oct. 30, 2016.