Grace From the Start: Day 22 {Dec 16th}

This week is going to get a little crazy so hang on to your hats.  We are entering a time in the history of God’s people when tribes are departing from God and each other.  As they are dividing they are appointing kings over them.  Overall these kings are not good kings.  These kings are not providing the message of God so God sends prophets to his people. With so many kings and so many prophets things can get a little crazy to follow. 

The first prophet we are going to look at is Elijah.  He was a prophet during the time of Ahab.  King Ahab does not have a good reputation.  {that may be the understatement of the century.}  

“And Ahab the son of Omir did evil in the sight of the Lord, more than all who were before him.”  

1 Kings 16:30

King Ahab served Ball and worshiped him.  He erected alters for Baal.

“Ahab did more to provoke the Lord, the God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him.” 

1 Kings 16:30

As I said…he does not have a good reputation.  This is who was in office when God sent Elijah.  God’s people did not have a king who feared Him so God sent a prophet to bring His words to His people. 

During the life and ministry of Elijah we see God do A LOT of miraculous things.  During a famine he provides for Elijah near a creek sending ravens that provide bread and meat.  When the water dries up God sends Elijah to a widow who only has enough bread and oil to make one loaf of bread.  This widows plan is to eat this bread and die.  God provides bread and oil that never run out.  The widows son dies and God uses Elijah to raise him from he dead. This is also the guy who will be taken up by God.  He will not die instead he will just be swept up to God.  Elijah’s life is full of lots of ‘big’ miracles.  

God also uses Elijah to show his power in a big way:

26 And they took the bull that was given them, and they prepared it and called upon the name of Baal from morning until noon, saying, “O Baal, answer us!” But there was no voice, and no one answered. And they limped around the altar that they had made. 27 And at noon Elijah mocked them, saying, “Cry aloud, for he is a god. Either he is musing, or he is relieving himself, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and must be awakened.” 28 And they cried aloud and cut themselves after their custom with swords and lances,until the blood gushed out upon them. 29 And as midday passed, they raved on until the time of the offering of the oblation, but there was no voice. No one answered; no one paid attention.

30 Then Elijah said to all the people, “Come near to me.” And all the people came near to him. And he repaired the altar of the Lord that had been thrown down. 31 Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob,to whom the word of the Lord came,saying, “Israel shall be your 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 seahs[a] of seed. 33 And he put the wood in order and cut the bull in pieces and laid it on the wood. And he said, “Fill four jars with water and pour it on the burnt offering and on the wood.”34 And he said, “Do it a second time.” And they did it a second time. And he said, “Do it a third time.”And they did it a third time. 35 And the water ran around the altar and filled the trench also with water.

36 And at the time of the offering of the oblation, Elijah the prophet came near and said, “O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word. 37 Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that this people may know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you have turned their hearts back.” 38 Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering 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 said, “The Lord, he is God; the Lord, he is God.”

I can not skip over how Elijah taunts the prophets of Baal here.

And at noon Elijah mocked them, saying, “Cry aloud, for he is a god. Either he is musing, or he is relieving himself, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and must be awakened.”

His taunting and pouring of water 3 times shows the confidence he has in God.  Elijah has watched God work.  Elijah knows just how powerful He is and all He can do.

We do not need to take our ‘gods’ so seriously either.  Those things we think have control over our life do not have the control that God does. 

We have seen God work and we know what he is capable of.  We get to rest in that.   We can see all he has done in history and we have seen all he has done in our own lives.  Who he is and what he has done is what we get to have confidence in.  These are the things we rest in on this Sunday and everyday.  

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