“And he cried unto the Lord and said, ‘O Lord, my God, have You also brought evil upon the widow with whom I sojourn, by slaying her son?’ And he stretched himself upon the child three times and cried unto the Lord and said, ‘O Lord, my God, I pray You, let this child’s soul come unto him again.’ And, the Lord heard the voice of Elijah—and the soul of the child came unto him again and he revived.”
I Kings 17:20-22
When we walk by faith, we entrust our lives—and all that happens—into His loving Hands.
He was fleet-of-foot (I Kings 18:46). . .of rugged constitution that could withstand famines and living in caves (I Kings 17:3; 19:9) and a mighty prayer warrior, who dressed rather strangely (I Kings 17:2; 18:41-45; James 5:17-18; II Kings 1:8). . .but, above all, he was one who took God at His Word and responded with simple, implicit obedience (I Kings 17:5).
His name meant “The Lord is my God” and he prophesied during the reigns of Ahab and Ahaziah—a wicked king and his son—during the ninth century B.C. He emphasized unconditional loyalty to God to a nation that had turned her back upon Him.
And, dear Pilgrim, isn’t that message desperately needed today?
Most assuredly it is.
That’s why today’s Manna definitely needs to be a part of our daily spiritual diet—especially if we, like Elijah, are to have the “Faith-Fiber” that will help us endure and rest in God as this prophet, who would not taste physical death (II Kings 2:1-11), did.
Again, Ahab was a wicked king, married to a wicked woman named Jezebel (I Kings 16:31). But, Elijah refused to soften his message, even though he’d have to go live by a brook and be fed by the ravens in a miraculous way for a while (17:1-6). When the brook dried up because of the famine, the Lord directed Elijah to go to the widow of Zarephath, which he did (vv.7-10).
Interestingly, when he asked the widow for a bite to eat, she told him her cupboards were almost bare and there was only enough meal and oil to make one small wafer for her son and her (vv.11-12). But, Elijah—knowing the Lord had “commanded her to feed him” (v.9)—said “Fear not; give me a little of the wafer first, for the Lord God said your barrel will not be bare or your vessel of oil empty during this famine” (vv.13-14).
And, without hesitation she obeyed his words and her supply did not fail (vv.15-16)! Glory!!
Later on, there was another “crisis of faith” (as Henry Blackaby calls it) and her son “fell sick and there was no breath in him” (v.17). This caused her to bring indictment against Elijah, basically blaming him for her son’s death (vv.17-18).
But, once again, Elijah cried out to God and “the Lord heard his voice and the child came back to life.” Even now we can envision this blessed scene and hear the weeping mother’s cries of joy. And, in the midst of it, her faith in God and His Word grew, even as it will for us (vv.23-24). If you going through a difficult time right now, Pilgrim, always remember the “Dangers and Delights of Obedience.” Trust God. Live by Faith. And obey completely.
June 5, 2011