Mount Carmel is the place where Elijah had his contest with the prophets of Baal. Following the contest you could look west toward the Mediterranean Sea, as Elijah asked his servant to do, to see if there were any signs of rain clouds. Looking eastward you would look down upon the Jezreel Valley where Elijah ran from Mount Carmel and out ran Ahab’s chariot.
1 Kings 18—1 And it came to pass after many days, that the word of the Lord came to Elijah in the third year, saying, Go, shew thyself unto Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth. 2 And Elijah went to shew himself unto Ahab. And there was a sore famine in Samaria. 3 And Ahab called Obadiah, which was the governor of his house. (Now Obadiah feared the Lord greatly: 4 For it was so, when Jezebel cut off the prophets of the Lord, that Obadiah took an hundred prophets, and hid them by fifty in a cave, and fed them with bread and water.) 5 And Ahab said unto Obadiah, Go into the land, unto all fountains of water, and unto all brooks: peradventure we may find grass to save the horses and mules alive, that we lose not all the beasts. 6 So they divided the land between them to pass throughout it: Ahab went one way by himself, and Obadiah went another way by himself. 7 And as Obadiah was in the way, behold, Elijah met him: and he knew him, and fell on his face, and said, Art thou that my lord Elijah? 8 And he answered him, I am: go, tell thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here. 9 And he said, What have I sinned, that thou wouldest deliver thy servant into the hand of Ahab, to slay me? 10 As the Lord thy God liveth, there is no nation or kingdom, whither my lord hath not sent to seek thee: and when they said, He is not there; he took an oath of the kingdom and nation, that they found thee not. 11 And now thou sayest, Go, tell thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here. 12 And it shall come to pass, as soon as I am gone from thee, that the Spirit of the Lord shall carry thee whither I know not; and so when I come and tell Ahab, and he cannot find thee, he shall slay me: but I thy servant fear the Lord from my youth. 13 Was it not told my lord what I did when Jezebel slew the prophets of the Lord, how I hid an hundred men of the Lord’s prophets by fifty in a cave, and fed them with bread and water? 14 And now thou sayest, Go, tell thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here: and he shall slay me. 15 And Elijah said, As the Lord of hosts liveth, before whom I stand, I will surely shew myself unto him to day. 16 So Obadiah went to meet Ahab, and told him: and Ahab went to meet Elijah. 17 And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel? 18 And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father’s house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim. 19 Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel unto mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the groves four hundred, which eat at Jezebel’s table. 20 So Ahab sent unto all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together unto mount Carmel. 21 And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word. 22 Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the Lord; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men. 23 Let them therefore give us two bullocks; and let them choose one bullock for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: and I will dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: 24 And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the Lord: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken. 25 And Elijah said unto the prophets of Baal, Choose you one bullock for yourselves, and dress it first; for ye are many; and call on the name of your gods, but put no fire under. 26 And they took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made. 27 And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah 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. 28 And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them. 29 And it came to pass, when midday was past, and they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded. 30 And Elijah said unto all the people, Come near unto me. And all the people came near unto him. And he repaired the altar of the Lord that was broken down. 31 And Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, unto whom the word of the Lord came, saying, Israel shall be thy name: 32 And with the stones he built an altar in the name of the Lord: and he made a trench about the altar, as great as would contain two measures of seed. 33 And he put the wood in order, and cut the bullock in pieces, and laid him on the wood, and said, Fill four barrels with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice, and on the wood. 34 And he said, Do it the second time. And they did it the second time. And he said, Do it the third time. And they did it the third time. 35 And the water ran round about the altar; and he filled the trench also with water. 36 And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word. 37 Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the Lord God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again. 38 Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. 39 And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, he is the God; the Lord, he is the God. 40 And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there. 41 And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get thee up, eat and drink; for there is a sound of abundance of rain. 42 So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he cast himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees, 43 And said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up, and looked, and said, There is nothing. And he said, Go again seven times. 44 And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man’s hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain stop thee not. 45 And it came to pass in the mean while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rode, and went to Jezreel. 46 And the hand of the Lord was on Elijah; and he girded up his loins, and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.
This is one of the very fertile valleys in Israel.
Look to the east by south east you may see Mount Gilboa
Looking directly east from Mount Carmel in the distance past the Jezreel valley is Nazareth. Just north of Mount Tabor.
Looking north across the Haifa harbor you can see the ancient city of Akko or (Acre), Ptolemais. This was the port city that many of the crusaders arrived by ship landed in Palestine. The walls and fortifications of this important Crusader’s city still stand today in many places throughout the city.
Judges 1:31—31 Neither did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Accho, nor the inhabitants of Zidon, nor of Ahlab, nor of Achzib, nor of Helbah, nor of Aphik, nor of Rehob:
Acts 21:6–7—6 And when we had taken our leave one of another, we took ship; and they returned home again. 7 And when we had finished our course from Tyre, we came to Ptolemais, and saluted the brethren, and abode with them one day.
Accho was Asher’s portion, but never was wrested from the original dwellers (Judges 1:31). Paul landed here from Tyre, and stayed one day with Christian brethren, before sailing on to Caesarea
Ptolemais in the New Testament, Jean d’Acre (named from the knights of John of Jerusalem); it has been called “the key of Palestine.”
Its sands were employed by the Sidonians in making glass. The name is akin to the Arab Akeh, a sandy shore heated by the sun.
The chief seaport in Syria, 30 miles S. of Tyre; on the N. of the only inlet on the Palestine coast, with Carmel on the S. side. The distance across is eight miles.
The river Belus flows into the sea close under the town walls. (Fausset’s Bible Dictionary, Electronic Database Copyright (c)1998 by Biblesoft)
This seaport was the jumping off point for many of the crusaders who sailed to the Holy Land.
Acco, Ptolemais, Acre: This town became an important place because of the only natural harbor on Israel’s coast line.
Same as “Acco” in Judges 1:31. Ptolemais was the most prominent town on the Phoenician seacoast in Maccabean times (1 Macc 5:15,55; 10:1,58,60; 12:48), and is once mentioned in the New Testament in Acts 21:7 as a seaport at which Paul landed for one day, visiting the “brethren” in the place.
Modern Arabic ‘Akka, English Acre; the King James Version Accho: A town on the Syrian coast a few miles north of Carmel, on a small promontory on the north side of a broad bay that lies between it and the modern town of Haifa. This bay furnishes the best anchorage for ships of any on this coast except that of St. George, at Beirut, and Alexandretta at the extreme north.
It fell within the bounds assigned to the Israelites, particularly to the tribe of Asher, but they were never able to take it (Josh 19:24–31; Judges 1:31). It was, like Tyre and Sidon, too strong for them to attack and it became indeed a fortress of unusual strength, so that it many a siege, often baffling its assailants.
In the period of the Crusades it was the most famous stronghold on the coast, and in very early times it was a place of importance and appears in the Tell el-Amarna Letters as a possession of the Egyptian kings. Its governor wrote to his suzerain professing loyalty when the northern towns were falling away (Amos Tab 17 BM, 95 B). The Egyptian suzerainty over the coast, which was established by Thothmes III about 1480 B.C., was apparently lost in the 14th century, as is indicated in Tell el-Amarna Letters, but was regained under Seti I and his more famous son Rameses II in the 13th, to be again lost in the 12th when the Phoenician towns seem to have established their independence. Sidon however surpassed her sisters in power and exercised a sort of hegemony over the Phoenician towns, at least in the south, and Acco was included in it (Rawl. Phoenica, 407–8). But when Assyria came upon the scene it had to submit to this power, although it revolted whenever Assyria became weak, as appears from the mention of its subjugation by Sennacherib, and by Asshur-bani-pal. (from International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, Electronic Database Copyright © 1996, 2003, 2006 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)
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