Prophet Ilyas (Elijah) alaihissalam also spelled Elias was the descendent of Prophet Haroon alaihissalam. He was sent to guide the children of Israel to the truth and invite them towards Tawheed. Prophet Ilyas alaihissalam is first mentioned as a prophet in surah Al-Anam – And Zechariah and John and Jesus and Elias – and all were of the righteous (Al-Anam:85). He is mentioned in many other Quranic ayahs as well. His full name is Ilyas ibn Yasin according to Islamic sources, as He is mentioned in surah As-Saffat “Salamun Al’aa il Yaseen: Peace be upon Ilyas” (As-Saffat 37:130). The Prophethood of Ilyas alaihissalam began after the death of Prophet Sulaiman alaihissalam. After Sulaeman alaihissalam passed away, his kingdom was divided into two groups as Israel and Yahuda.
Ahab was the new king of Israel. He was one of the most wicked rulers of Israel. He and his evil wife Jezebel began to build temples with idols and started worshipping an idol named Ba’al, which is said to be 13,6 meters tall with 4 faces.
The whole kingdom fell into the trap of shaytan and was misguided. They all followed shirk, started worshipping idols, and did evil deeds except a few. Those who refused to disobey the prophet and ALLAH SWT were severely tortured and punished to death.
Prophet Ilyas alaihissalam tried his best to call them to truth, forbade them from doing Shirk (worshipping idols), and warned them from the torments of ALLAH SWT. He tried hard to let them understand that their idols are helpless and powerless but disbelievers paid no heed to his teachings.
ALLAH SWT mentions in Quran: Verily Ilyas was one of the apostles. When he said to his people: “Will you not fear God? Will ye call upon Ba’al and leave the Best of Creators, God, your Lord and Cherisher and the Lord and Cherisher of your fathers of old?” (As-Saffat 123-126 )
Ilyas alaihissalam ask ALLAH SWT for help and prayed to punish the ignorants and ALLAH SWT answered his supplications. The whole kingdom of Ahab came under draught that continued for three long years. People were dying of famine and were continuously praying to Ba’al for help. When nothing helped and people found themselves inflicted and dying due to starvation, they regretted their past deeds and asked Prophet Ilyas to pray ALLAH SWT for rain and end the draught.
Ilyas alaihissalam prayed, ALLAH SWT accepted his prayers and it rained, people were relieved from unending draught and accepted the invitation of Ilyas alaihissalam.
However, people forgot everything and continued with their disbelief and idol worshipping.
When Ilyas alaihissalam witnessed their ignorance, it is said that He asked ALLAH SWT for his death and ALLAH ascended him to skies on a chariot of fire. And ALLAH knows best.