Cover Image: Faith in the Face of Apostasy

Faith in the Face of Apostasy:
The Gospel According to Elijah and Elisha

Raymond Dillard (Presbyterian & Reformed, 1999)

Blurb Review


This book inaugurated the Gospel According to the Old Testament Series. It is a series committed to the proposition that the Bible, both Old and New Testaments, is a unified revelation of God and that its thematic unity is found in Christ. The series aims to: lay out the pervasiveness of the revelation of Christ in the Old Testament; promote a Christ-centred reading of the Old Testament; encourage Christ-centred preaching and teaching from the Old Testament. A drawback of the series is that it is not clear exactly what specific interpretive principles govern the overall desire to read the OT Christologically - this can lead to some rather uncontrolled connections at times. This volume, by the late Ray Dillard, is recommended as a good introduction to handling OT narrative well on the whole and to unpacking the biblical-theological significance of Elijah and Elisha in particular. See, for instance, the illuminating chapter on Elijah at Mount Carmel (1 Kings 19) and the 'Elijah-as-second-Moses' interpretation that will prevent the standard 'Elijah-as-burnt-out-Christian' banality that is often churned out on this passage.


1. Christians and the Old Testament

2. The Lord, Our Provider
A. Of Pedigrees and Provisions (1 Kings 17: 1-6)
B. Of Famine and Faith (1 Kings 17:7-16)
C. Now I Know (1 Kings 17:17-24)

3. Yahweh Versus Baal: The Ultimate Contest
A. Confrontation and Concealment (1 Kings 18:1-15)
B. Idolatry on Trial (1 Kings 18:16-46)41

4. The Further Adventures of Elijah, the Servant of the Lord
A. A Second Moses Visits God's Mountain (1 Kings 19:1-18)
B. Elijah's Heir and Successor (1 Kings 19: 19-21)

5. Elijah Versus the Kings
A. "New Lamps for Old" (1 Kings 21)
B. The Sins of the Father (2 Kings 1)

6. Elisha Succeeds Elijah
A. Passing the Mantle (2 Kings 2:1-18)
B. A Tale of Two Cities (2 Kings 2:19-25)

7. Deja Vu
A. A Prophet's Poor Widow (2 Kings 4:1-7)
B. A Family at Shunem (2 Kings 4:8-37)

8. More Miracles
A. TIvo Meals (2 Kings 4:38-44)
B. A Bath for Naaman (2 Kings 5)

9. God in the Little and the Big Things
A. The Floating Axhead (2 Kings 6:1-7)
B. Open Our Eyes, Lord (2 Kings 6:8-23)

10. The Power of God and the Power of the Prophet
A. A Siege and a Son (2 Kings 6:24-7:2)
B. The Plight of the Homeless (2 Kings 8: 1-6)

11. The Death of Elisha
A. Arrows and Errors (2 Kings 13:10-19)
B. Can These Bones Live? (2 Kings 13:20-21)

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