Sunday, August 19, 2018

Elijah flees

In the book of 1 Kings, chapter 19, Elijah found himself afraid for his life.  Ahab threatened him for all that he had done to his prophets of Baal.

Elijah slept under a tree.  An angel of the Lord came to him and gave him food and water, then went on a journey for forty days and nights.

Elijah hid in a cave.  The Lord asked what he was doing.  Elijah said he was afraid and that since he was the only one left, he might as well be killed.  But God protected him.

The Lord then told Elijah to go to Damascus, and there he was to anoint Hazael king of Syria and Jehu king of Israel.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

God vs. Baal

In the 18th chapter of 1 Kings, the Lord told Elijah to show himself to Ahab, for the Lord will send rain upon the earth, ending a severe famine.

Ahab was skeptical at first.  He called Elijah a troubler.  But Elijah told Ahab that it was Ahab who troubled Israel by abandoning the Lord's commandments.  Ahab gathered 450 prophets of Baal onto Mount Carmel.  Elijah told the Baal followers to command that their god Baal answer their prayers.  So they cried out to Baal, over and over again.

Their prayers were never answered.

Elijah built an altar to the Lord, sacrificed a bull, and drenched it with water.  Elijah prayed to the Lord and the Lord answered by showering fire onto the bull offering, licking up all of the water.

Those who saw this fell on their faces.  Then, they slaughtered the prophets of the false god Baal.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

More and more evil

In chapter 16 of the book of 1 Kings, it continues with another succession of kings like chapter 15, each one more horrible than the last.  Some reign for many years.  Others, not so much.  None seem to learn from the past, to finally make right what their forefathers did wrong.

And their wrongs were done at the cost of their children.

In chapter 17, we meet Elijah.  He predicted a drought, and he followed God's word by travelling to where He told him to go without question.  He went to an area where there was water, and ravens brought him food day and night.  When the drought finally occurred, the Lord told him to seek out a widow in the town of Zarephath.

The widow was not trusting of Elijah at first, for she had a son who was dying.  She had only enough food for herself and her son.  Elijah trusted in the Lord and told her what God had said.  And it became true.

Soon, the son of the widow became ill and died.  The widow was distraught and asked Elijah to help her.  Elijah took her son and prayed to God, pleading with Him to help bring her son back to life.  And it was done.

And it was then that the widow knew Elijah was a man of God.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Honoring God in all the right places

In the 15th chapter of 1 Kings, we come a line of kings in Judah and Israel.  Some were true to God, others not so much.

And those who were true to God, were only true most of the time.  Hence a king named Asa.  He did what was right for all of the people to see, like removing idols and cult prostitutes, but in the higher places where only he and a few chosen knew about, he kept idols in place.

Remember that when you honor God, do it both in public and private.  Because even though others may see one thing, God sees all.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Jeroboam's deception and downfall

In the book of 1 Kings, chapter 14, Jeroboam, son of Solomon, had a son who was sick.  He instructed his wife to travel to Shiloh and seek out the prophet Ahijah.  He wanted her to disguise herself and ask about their son.

When she arrives, the Lord had already instructed the prophet of the deception.  Because of it, the prophet spoke of the Lord's instruction, saying that their son would be dead as soon as she arrived back at their hometown.

Also, for the sins Jeroboam had set on the Lord's people, his family would be destroyed and his future family would have no place in Israel.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Speak of your sins, and the Lord will forgive

In Psalm 32 is a blessing to those who tell the Lord of their sins, and He will forgive you.

If you keep silent and do not acknowledge your transgressions, your soul will waste away like the sun drying up one's skin.

Seek out the Lord and tell him where you sin.  He will forgive you.

But first, you must tell Him where you need His help.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Jeroboam

In the book of 1 Kings, chapter 13, we meet a man whom we had previous met: Jeroboam.  He ruled over the rest of Israel that was not under King Solomon's son.

In this chapter, a man of God came to the altar where Jeroboam had been standing by.  The man of God cried out and offered a prophecy, that the altar would be torn down and poured out into ashes.

Then, as Jeroboam told his guards to seize him, Jeroboam's hand dried up and the altar turned to ash, just as the man of God had said.

Jeroboam apologized and offered a meal to the man.  But the man refused, for it was against the will of God.

The man left, and was soon met by an old prophet.  By false means, the prophet offered a meal to the man and he accepted.  God was not pleased by this.  As the man went away, he was attacked and killed by a lion.