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Thundering warnings to Ahab, defying Jezebel, putting Baal's impotent prophets to the sword after the fiery confrontation on Carmel: Thus Elijah, the rough-hewn prophet of Yahweh, strides onto the stage of history to play out his role against the dark backdrop of one of Israel's blackest eras. "Elijah," a powerful historical novel, brings to life this time of division: a divided kingdom, divided worship, divided people no longer bound together in loyalty to Yahweh.
The kings of Israel were all guilty of apostasy, and none more blatantly so than Ahab, who disastrously contaminated Israel's religious life by marrying Jezebel, a Phoenician princess fanatically devoted to the worship of Baal-Melkart--giver of economic power--and his consort, the fertility goddess Asherah--the essence of whose worship was sexual debauchery.
This twin appeal to materialism and sensuality, unmistakable in its parallel to our own day and culture, almost engulfed the nation. But Elijah came, speaking with the voice of authority, and saved Israel from complete spiritual extinction.
Dr. William H. Stephens held editorial positions with LifeWay Christian Resources prior to his retirement. He created and was for ten years editor of Biblical Illustrator, a Bible background and archeology magazine. Then, with the title of Senior Curriculum Coordinator, he was responsible for the content of all discipleship training materials dealing with history and doctrine, along with other areas. After his early retirement he was adjunct professor of New Testament at Belmont University for seven years. He is the author of eighteen books.