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A, M. 3049. Q. What became of Nadab ?
Asa 3. Philistines; but whilst he was besieging Gibbethon, one of their cities, Baasha conspired against. him and slew him :. and, having seized, the crown, utterly destroyed all the house of Jeroboam,
Q. What wars did Baasha carry on?
of Jeroboam ; wherefore the Lord sent Jehu the prophet, the son of Hanani, to announce to him the awful judgments that awaited his family on account of his sins. A. M. 3072. Q. What became of Baasha? B. C. 932. A. Having reigned four and twenty Asa 26. years over Israel, he died ; and was succeeded by his son Elah.
Q. With what people did Elah carry on war?
A. He warred against the Philistines, and sent Omri, captain of the host, to besiege Gibbethon. Meantime A. M. 3073. he gave himself up to intemperance ; B. C. 931. but in the second year of his reign, Asa 27. Zimri, one of his captains, assassinated him whilst he was drunk, in the house of his steward, and reigned in his stead. A. M. 3073. Q. How did Zimri act towards the family B. C. 931. of Elah?
Asa 27. A. He slew all his house, his kindred, and also his friends. But the army at Gibbethon hearing of the death of Elah, raised Omri, their captain, to the throne. Leaving Gibbethon, therefore, Omri immediately led his army against Zimri, and besieged bim in Tirzah. The city being captured, Zimri shut himself up in the palace, and setting fire to it, perished in the flames, after a reign of seven days. A. M. 3073. Q. Was Omri then left in quiet posB. C. 931. session of the crown? Asa 27. A. No: half of the people declared for Tibni, son of Ginath, and made him a king ; in consequence of which a civil war ensued.
“But the people that followed Omri prevailed against the people that followed Tibni :--80 Tibni died, and Omri reignad.* A. M. 3077. Q. Did Tirzah continue to be the capital B. C. 927. of Israel ? Asa 31. A. No: Omri built a new capital, and called it Samaria, after Shemer, of whom he bought the hill on which the city stood.
Q. Did Omri fear God?
A. No : "he wrought evil in the eyes of the LORD, A. M. 3084. and did worse than all that were before B. C. 920. him." After a reign of twelve years, he Asa 38. died, and was succeeded by Ahab his son.
Q. What was the character of Abab?
A. He was obstinately given to idolatry, and “ did more to provoke the LORD—to anger than all the kings -that were before him.” For “ he took to wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Zidonians,--and reamed up an altar for Baal,” and “ made a grove."
* See Remarks to Chron. Table, No, 4.
Q. For what is Jezebel remarkable ?
A. For her hatred to the worship of the true God,* whose prophets she caused to be slain ; and for zeal in the cause of Baal, whose prophets, four hundred and fifty in number, besides the prophets of the groves, t were fed at her own table.
Q. Were all the LORD's prophets destroyed ?
A. No: Obadiah, Ahab's steward, who" feared the Lord greatly," took a hundred prophets, and hid them by fifties in a cave, and fed them with bread and water.
Q. What was the consequence of Ahab's sins ?
A. At the prayer of Elijah the Tishbite, the Lord visited Israel with a famine that continued three years and six months.
Q. How was Elijah himself supported in this calamitous period?
A. He dwelt, by God's command, at the brook of Cherith, whither ravens carried him bread and flesh every morning and evening. When this brook dried up, the Lord coinmanded hiin to go to Zarephath in Zidon, and to sojourn there with a poor
widow. Q. How did this woman behave to the prophet?
A. Believing him to be a man of God, she hesitated not to make him a small cake, though all that remained of her provisions was a handful of meal and a little oil :
* So pre-eminent was the wickedness of this woman, that the Spirit has used her name Rev. ii. 20. to personify the abominations of idolatry.
+ A kind of druids, or priests of the oaks, to the groves of which they resorted to celebrate their abominable mysteries.
being assured that the barrel of meal should not waste, nor the cruise of oil fail, until the day that the Lord should send rain upon the land : which came to pass accordingly.
Q. How did the Lord further interpose in behalf of this woman?
A. Her only son dying, Elijah prayed for his restoration ; " and the Lord heard the voice of Elijab, and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived."
Q. Was Ahab aware that the famine was sent in answer to Elijah's prayer ?
A. Yes : and therefore he sought for him in all the neighbouring kingdoms, but in vain. However in the third year the LORD said to Elijah, “ Go, shew thyself unto Ahab ; and I will send rain upon the earth.”
Q. What was the result of the interview ?
A. Ahab charged Elijah with being the troubler of Israel : but this charge was retorted by the prophet, who, attributing all the judgments that had befallen the land to the iniquity of Ahab's house, proposed to meet the prophets of Baal and the prophets of the groves, at mount Carmel, and there to appeal to the divine judgment. To this Ahab acceded ; and all Israel, and the idolatrous prophets, were accordingly assembled at mount Carmel.
Q. What mode of appeal was there adopted ?
A. Elijah proposed, on his own part, to offer sacrifice, without fire, to the Lord ; that the false prophets should offer sacrifice, in a similar inanner, to Baal; and that an answer by fire from heaven, should determine
who was the God of Israel. “ And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken."
Q. How did they then proceed ?
A. The prophets of Baal, having prepared a bullock and laid it on the altar, at the time of the morning sacrifice, called on Baal till noon day, saying, “O Baal! hear us : but there was no voice, por any that answered, And they leaped upon the altar.” Elijah therefore mocked them and said, “Cry aloud, for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth, and must be awaked. And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them;" and continued prophesying until the time of the evening sacrifice, but in vain.
Q. How had Elijah been occupied in the mean while ?
A. He had taken twelve stones according to the number of the tribes of Israel, and re-erected the altar of the LORD, that had been thrown down. Around this altar he made a trench ; and when the victim was laid in order on the wood, he filled the trench with water. And at the time of the evening sacrifice, he approached the altar and said, “LORD God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Israel, let it be shown this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done these things at thy word. Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that thon art the Lord God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again. Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and