Take Courage!

 “Then He said, ‘Go out, and stand on the mountain before the Lord.'” –1 Kings 19:11

Elijah…a godly man charged with an incredibly difficult task: be an example of a faithful follower of God in the midst of the reign of King Ahab and Queen Jezebel. How bad was the King? Chapter 16 verse 30 says, “Now Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the Lord, more than all who were before him.” Verse 33 says, “Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him.” This was one bad dude!

Thus the ministry of Elijah in Scripture begins. God works miracle after through him, from the Mt. Carmel victory of the prophets of Baal to Elijah raising the widow’s son back to life. At one point, Elijah even relied on God to feed him using ravens as the delivery service (1 Kings 17)! And yet, despite all of this, Elijah find himself running for his life to hide from Queen Jezebel. In 19:4, he is ready to give up…“And he prayed that he might die, and said, ‘It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!’” Towards the end of the passage, Elijah is spending the night in a cave at Horeb, the mountain of God.

Tired, despondent, and ready to give up…this was Elijah, the mighty prophet of God!  What the Lord does next is so cool!

God asks Elijah, “What are you doing here?” Elijah responds,

“I have been very zealous for the Lord God of hosts; for the children of Israel have forsaken Your covenant, torn down Your altars, and killed Your prophets with the sword. I alone am left; and they seek to take my life.”

Elijah is at a low point, feeling that he is the only one still seeking the Lord. How often have you felt this way? I know I have many times! Satan always wants to make us feel and think that we’re alone in our walk with God. Look at Elijah! He was a mighty man of God, and yet he still battled those feelings.

And at this point, God calls Elijah out onto the mountain to stand before the Lord, and He shows His power to Elijah (19:11-12). What an encouragement that must’ve been for Elijah to be reassured that he was doing the right thing even if no one else was.

To me, the most beautiful part of this passage is verse 18:

“Yet I have reserved seven thousand in Israel, all whose knees have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.”

Even when it looked like Elijah was alone, he wasn’t…not only was the Lord with him, but there were others who were committed to following the Lord. Throughout Scripture, there are mentions of believers that are serving the Lord and are a remnant in the face of a hostile culture. So when you are lonely and feeling like you’re the only one striving after the Lord, remember the 7000 who hadn’t bowed to Baal. Take courage!

In Christ,

Christopher

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