Prophet Elijah's Escape
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Prophet Elijah's Escape (Revelation 12.10-12)

"Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say, 'Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Messiah. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down. They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony. They did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short.'" (Revelation 12.10-12)✞

Kerith Ravine

Jesus in the DesertThere were no doubt many pictures in John's mind as he wrote this Biblical record. There was the picture of the Prophet Elijah's escape from King Ahab to the "Brook Cherith" or "Kerith" or sometimes "Brook Chorath" narrated in 1 Kings 17.2-6. "Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: 'Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. You will drink from the brook, and I have directed the ravens to supply you with food there.' So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook." Elijah was fed by the ravens there and later fled into the desert, where he was nourished by an angelic messenger. According to 1 Kings 19.3a "Elijah was afraid [or "Elijah saw"] and ran for his life."

Baby Jesus Escape

There was also the memory in John of Patmos's mind of the flight of Mary and Joseph with the baby Jesus to Egypt in Matthew 2.13b-15a, "An angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. 'Get up,' he said, 'take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.' So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod." Mary, Joseph and the baby Jesus journeyed into Egypt to escape the murderous intent of King Herod. Two other more recent incidents were probably also in John of Patmos' mind. 1 Maccabaeus 2.29 tells us that in the time of Antiochus Epiphanies, when to keep the law and to worship the true God meant death, many "who sought after justice and judgment went down to the wilderness to dwell there."

"Prophet Elijah's Escape"
by Ron Meacock © 2017

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