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Cherith

Cherith, from the Hebrew word pronounced ker-eeth, meaning cutting, was a seasonal stream (i.e. usually dry in summer) that flowed into The Jordan River (the Jordan itself originates in the far north of the land of Israel and flows south, through the Sea of Galilee, which is actually a freshwater lake, until it ends in the Dead Sea) in the area adjacent to Jericho. It was there that the LORD (see 'Before Abraham Was, I AM') told Elijah to take refuge during the beginning of a drought - that Elijah himself was given to prophesy. Christ's famous "No prophet is accepted in his own country" was stated in the context of that drought in the time of Elijah.

"4:24 And he said, Verily, I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country. 4:25 But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land; 4:26 But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow." (Luke 4:24-26 KJV)

"The brook Cherith, that is before Jordan"

Elijah wasn't merely given to go and somehow survive in the wilderness. The LORD provided miraculous delivery of food.

Elijah and Ravens

"17:1 And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word.

17:2 And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, 17:3 Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. 17:4 And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.

17:5 So he went and did according unto the word of the LORD: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. 17:6 And the Ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook." (1 Kings 17:1-6 KJV)

When the Cherith dried up because of the drought, the LORD then instructed Elijah to go north to Zarephath, a Phoenician town between Tyre and Sidon (as also described in the New Testament quote above). There, the miraculous sustenance continued.

"17:7 And it came to pass after a while, that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land. 17:8 And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, 17:9 Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee. 17:10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink. 17:11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand.

17:12 And she said, As the LORD thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.

17:13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. 17:14 For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the LORD sendeth rain upon the earth.

17:15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. 17:16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Elijah." (1 Kings 17:7-16 KJV)

Fact Finder: Did John the Baptist, the later "Elijah" (see The Elijahs), also live in the same area of the Cherith for some time?
See The Prophet Of The Judean Wilderness


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