2 The word of Hashem came to him:
ב וַיְהִי דְבַר־יְהֹוָה אֵלָיו לֵאמֹר׃
ג לֵךְ מִזֶּה וּפָנִיתָ לְּךָ קֵדְמָה וְנִסְתַּרְתָּ בְּנַחַל כְּרִית אֲשֶׁר עַל־פְּנֵי הַיַּרְדֵּן׃
4 You will drink from the wadi, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.”
ד וְהָיָה מֵהַנַּחַל תִּשְׁתֶּה וְאֶת־הָעֹרְבִים צִוִּיתִי לְכַלְכֶּלְךָ שָׁם׃
ה וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיַּעַשׂ כִּדְבַר יְהֹוָה וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיֵּשֶׁב בְּנַחַל כְּרִית אֲשֶׁר עַל־פְּנֵי הַיַּרְדֵּן׃
6 The ravens brought him bread and meat every morning and every evening, and he drank from the wadi.
ו וְהָעֹרְבִים מְבִיאִים לוֹ לֶחֶם וּבָשָׂר בַּבֹּקֶר וְלֶחֶם וּבָשָׂר בָּעָרֶב וּמִן־הַנַּחַל יִשְׁתֶּה׃
7 After some time the wadi dried up, because there was no rain in the land.
ז וַיְהִי מִקֵּץ יָמִים וַיִּיבַשׁ הַנָּחַל כִּי לֹא־הָיָה גֶשֶׁם בָּאָרֶץ׃
8 And the word of Hashem came to him:
ח וַיְהִי דְבַר־יְהֹוָה אֵלָיו לֵאמֹר׃
9 “Go at once to Zarephath of Sidon, and stay there; I have designated a widow there to feed you.”
ט קוּם לֵךְ צָרְפַתָה אֲשֶׁר לְצִידוֹן וְיָשַׁבְתָּ שָׁם הִנֵּה צִוִּיתִי שָׁם אִשָּׁה אַלְמָנָה לְכַלְכְּלֶךָ׃
10 So he went at once to Zarephath. When he came to the entrance of the town, a widow was there gathering wood. He called out to her, “Please bring me a little water in your pitcher, and let me drink.”
י וַיָּקָם וַיֵּלֶךְ צָרְפַתָה וַיָּבֹא אֶל־פֶּתַח הָעִיר וְהִנֵּה־שָׁם אִשָּׁה אַלְמָנָה מְקֹשֶׁשֶׁת עֵצִים וַיִּקְרָא אֵלֶיהָ וַיֹּאמַר קְחִי־נָא לִי מְעַט־מַיִם בַּכְּלִי וְאֶשְׁתֶּה׃
11 As she went to fetch it, he called out to her, “Please bring along a piece of bread for me.”
יא וַתֵּלֶךְ לָקַחַת וַיִּקְרָא אֵלֶיהָ וַיֹּאמַר לִקְחִי־נָא לִי פַּת־לֶחֶם בְּיָדֵךְ׃
12 “As Hashem your God lives,” she replied, “I have nothing baked, nothing but a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a jug. I am just gathering a couple of sticks, so that I can go home and prepare it for me and my son; we shall eat it and then we shall die.”
יב וַתֹּאמֶר חַי־יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ אִם־יֶשׁ־לִי מָעוֹג כִּי אִם־מְלֹא כַף־קֶמַח בַּכַּד וּמְעַט־שֶׁמֶן בַּצַּפָּחַת וְהִנְנִי מְקֹשֶׁשֶׁת שְׁנַיִם עֵצִים וּבָאתִי וַעֲשִׂיתִיהוּ לִי וְלִבְנִי וַאֲכַלְנֻהוּ וָמָתְנוּ׃
13 “Don’t be afraid,” said Eliyahu to her. “Go and do as you have said; but first make me a small cake from what you have there, and bring it out to me; then make some for yourself and your son.
יג וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלֶיהָ אֵלִיָּהוּ אַל־תִּירְאִי בֹּאִי עֲשִׂי כִדְבָרֵךְ אַךְ עֲשִׂי־לִי מִשָּׁם עֻגָה קְטַנָּה בָרִאשֹׁנָה וְהוֹצֵאתְ לִי וְלָךְ וְלִבְנֵךְ תַּעֲשִׂי בָּאַחֲרֹנָה׃
14 For thus said Hashem, the God of Yisrael: The jar of flour shall not give out and the jug of oil shall not fail until the day that Hashem sends rain upon the ground.”
17:14 The jar of flour shall not give out and the jug of oil shall not fail
The contents of the widow’s jug of oil and jar of flour, both of which are close to empty, do not diminish during the entire period of drought. This miracle follows a familiar pattern. In general, when Hashem performs miracles, He does so by using that which is already in existence. Thus, He does not create flour or oil where there is nothing, but rather extends the supply of the quantity that is already present. This is similar to the miracles performed in the establishment and subsequent flourishing of the State of Israel. The People of Israel had to do real work, and to be willing to give up their lives for a Jewish State in the Land of Israel. After they had done so, God then met the people more than halfway by performing miracles of truly biblical proportions. For example, though the Jewish people have always been vastly outnumbered by their enemies, Hashem continually grants victory to the Israel Defense Forces. Similarly, the massive ingathering of the exiles from all corners of the Earth is a miraculous fulfillment of the biblical prophecy, “Your children shall return to their country” (Jeremiah 31:16).2 comments
15 She went and did as Eliyahu had spoken, and she and he and her household had food for a long time.
טו וַתֵּלֶךְ וַתַּעֲשֶׂה כִּדְבַר אֵלִיָּהוּ וַתֹּאכַל הוא־והיא [הִיא־] [וָהוּא] וּבֵיתָהּ יָמִים׃
16 The jar of flour did not give out, nor did the jug of oil fail, just as Hashem had spoken through Eliyahu.
טז כַּד הַקֶּמַח לֹא כָלָתָה וְצַפַּחַת הַשֶּׁמֶן לֹא חָסֵר כִּדְבַר יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר בְּיַד אֵלִיָּהוּ׃
17 After a while, the son of the mistress of the house fell sick, and his illness grew worse, until he had no breath left in him.
יז וַיְהִי אַחַר הַדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה חָלָה בֶּן־הָאִשָּׁה בַּעֲלַת הַבָּיִת וַיְהִי חָלְיוֹ חָזָק מְאֹד עַד אֲשֶׁר לֹא־נוֹתְרָה־בּוֹ נְשָׁמָה׃
18 She said to Eliyahu, “What harm have I done you, O man of Hashem, that you should come here to recall my sin and cause the death of my son?”
יח וַתֹּאמֶר אֶל־אֵלִיָּהוּ מַה־לִּי וָלָךְ אִישׁ הָאֱלֹהִים בָּאתָ אֵלַי לְהַזְכִּיר אֶת־עֲוׂנִי וּלְהָמִית אֶת־בְּנִי׃
19 “Give me the boy,” he said to her; and taking him from her arms, he carried him to the upper chamber where he was staying, and laid him down on his own bed.
יט וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלֶיהָ תְּנִי־לִי אֶת־בְּנֵךְ וַיִּקָּחֵהוּ מֵחֵיקָהּ וַיַּעֲלֵהוּ אֶל־הָעֲלִיָּה אֲשֶׁר־הוּא יֹשֵׁב שָׁם וַיַּשְׁכִּבֵהוּ עַל־מִטָּתוֹ׃
20 He cried out to Hashem and said, “Hashem my God, will You bring calamity upon this widow whose guest I am, and let her son die?”
כ וַיִּקְרָא אֶל־יְהֹוָה וַיֹּאמַר יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהָי הֲגַם עַל־הָאַלְמָנָה אֲשֶׁר־אֲנִי מִתְגּוֹרֵר עִמָּהּ הֲרֵעוֹתָ לְהָמִית אֶת־בְּנָהּ׃
21 Then he stretched out over the child three times, and cried out to Hashem, saying, “Hashem my God, let this child’s life return to his body!”
כא וַיִּתְמֹדֵד עַל־הַיֶּלֶד שָׁלֹשׁ פְּעָמִים וַיִּקְרָא אֶל־יְהֹוָה וַיֹּאמַר יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהָי תָּשָׁב נָא נֶפֶשׁ־הַיֶּלֶד הַזֶּה עַל־קִרְבּוֹ׃
22 Hashem heard Eliyahu‘s plea; the child’s life returned to his body, and he revived.