After being incredibly use by God, Elijah has a sad precipitous decline. The contrast between chapters 17-18 and chapter 19 is remarkable. The confident faith-filled Elijah who prophesied no rain, told the king what to do, called the nation together, put on display God’s awesome power, executed God’s judgement on the prophets of Baal and beckoned the rain to come again to the nation – is suddenly fearful (1 Kings 18:3) and depressed and out of gas entirely (1 Kings 18:4) all because of one person he fears – Ahab’s wife, Jezebel!
Is there someone like that for you? Someone you fear, someone who has an influence over you and over your faith in God? May you choose to not allow anyone to impact your faith in God in the way that Jezebel did for Elijah.
I love the honesty of the bible, love the way it reveals Elijah’s frailty – I can identify with him. I love the way God cares for Elijah, strengthens him, calls him out from his depressed state (1Kings 18:9&13) and re-commissions him (1 Kings 18:6-18). But in the end Elijah is never the same again. God tells him to anoint Elisha his successor.
Do you feel like running away, hiding in a cave from life, from your calling, from God & others? Know this; your heavenly Father loves you, is kind and compassionate, wants to refresh and restore faith in you! Reach out to Him in prayer and allow Him to renew you.
Chapters 20-22 recount the end of Ahab’s rule and God’s judgement on him for his many sins. Twice God sends prophets (Elijah’s belief that he was the only one left was not true, there were many others faithful to God still in his day, he had believed a lie) to Ahab with the express purpose of showing Ahab that “I am the LORD” (1 Kings 20:13 & 28). Mount Carmel, the rain being withheld and then coming, these incidents – all were designed for Ahab to believe in the one true God, they are God graciously reaching out to Ahab in spite of his gross sin.
Is God reaching out to you in some way, showing you again and again who He really is, wanting you to only believe in Him and put your trust in Him?
Ahab with his wicked wife’s help sins against an honest man who’s vineyard he is coveting – Naboth. Jezebel has him murdered and Ahab takes the vineyard and this is the final straw for God. And so, Elijah is told to go and condemn Ahab (1 Kings 21:19).
Remarkably, Ahab repents (1 Kings 21:27-29) and so God relents and decides to delay some of the punishment but Ahab will still be killed by a not so random arrow (1 Kings 22:34) as prophesied by a remarkable prophet who alone heard God correctly and was bold enough to declare it – Micaiah (1 Kings 22:14-28)!
Are you willing to obey God like Micaiah did? Even when what you’re saying is the exact opposite to what everyone else is saying God is saying! May you have courage like this one man – Micaiah.