The Reason For The Presence Of The Chair Of Elijah At A Bris - Simchat Olam

The Reason For The Presence Of The Chair Of Elijah At A Bris

You’re getting ready for the big day to celebrate and welcome a new male baby into the family. Everyone wants to make sure, all the traditions of a Bris or Brit Milah are represented at the celebration. There will be an empty chair for the Elijah the Prophet at a circumcision ceremony. One may ask, well what is the reason for the chair of Elijah being placed at the celebration location in the first place?  The Prophet Elijah is also referred to as the ‘Angel of the Brit.’ The reason for the chair, is that Elijah is present at every circumcision ceremony. The reason for this traditions, goes back centuries as many other Jewish traditions and holidays. This custom is based around the time frame of 930 BCE, when Israel was split into two Kingdoms. One being the Kingdom of Israel and the Kingdom of Judah, which included Jerusalem.

During this time period when Israel was split into two, Elijah was called to task to fight off some evil figures trying to create havoc.  The duel occurred at Mt. Carmel,  Elijah was able to take down 450 false prophets at the site, which resulted in the deaths of the false prophets.

Two people that were enemies of Elijah survived, King Ahab of the Northern Kingdom and his very evil wife Jezebel, were not happy with Elijah and sent him a veiled warning. The message implied that by this tomorrow, you will suffer the same fate as the 450 false prophets.

Elijah was overcome with sheer terror at the message and he left the area, he found himself at Mount Sinai. It was there that god revealed himself to Elijah, During the revelation, Elijah said that some of the ‘people of Israel, were not keeping up with the holy covenant of a Brit Milah or Bris. Elijah in a bold move asked God to punish the violators that were not keeping the covenant of a Brit holy.

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