I KINGS AND II KINGS
|I am using my old laptop, and it will work for a while till I get my new one working again. It will need repairs. This one works just fine, just one year older. Today is Friday. Last night I led one 18 year old young man to Christ and had several others were invited to church. I had a great time with a new silent partner. I told the people last night our goal is to have 150 going out each week in some type of outreach, and then we will set a goal for 200 a week. We can do it! This morning, I sleep in. We have Fridays off for the summer, and I had little sleep during the conference at Lancaster, CA and especially having only two hours of sleep on Wednesday night before we got up to head to LAX and fly out at 6:00am. So, I slept for nine hours!! Yeah! Then I got a cup of coffee and started reading. Since I'm off, I took my time and took an hour and a half to read my usual 20 chapters. I love getting to do this, but I seldom have that much time to spend in a morning. So I enjoyed reading slowly and carefully. Here are just a few thoughts:|
1) ON MOUNT CARMEL- The show down was between the 450 prophets of Baal, and the 1 prophet of God, Elijah. Elijah through the gantlet down when he challenged them to this showdown in I Kings chapter 18. Having gathered all of the people together he said in verse 23, 24: "Let them therefore giveus two bullocks; and let them choose one bullock for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: and I will dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: (vs. 24) And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all of the people answered and said, It is well spoken." Now the false prophets spent from morning till the evening sacrifice time to call on Baal with no results. Then in verse 30, "And Elijah said unto all the people, Come near unto me...." Now, herein lies the thought:
Elijah said for the people to come close in around him to: a. See it- Watch him set up the altar, the wood, and the sacrifice. (he wanted eye witnesses!) ; b. Wet it- Twelve barrels of water to thoroughly wet everything having anything to do with the sacrifice and a trench of water around it as well.; c. Hear it- Elijah wanted them close to hear his simple prayer to God; d. Experience it- To be there when the fire fell. They were up close and could feel the fire strike the earth and lap up the sacrifice, the stones, the water, the wood, and the dust! Wow! They were close enough that they knew it was real! They experienced it!; and then finally e. Do it- They were then told what to do with the false prophets... and they did!
We need to get close enough to what God is doing to be a witness to all that God is doing in us, and around us.
2) A STILL SMALL VOICE- In I Kings 19:12 we see that God spoke to Elijah in a "still small voice." The wind came, the earthquake came, the fire came... but the LORD was not in those things. He sent them, but He did not communicate through them. He communicated through the still small voice. Still today, by His Spirit, God communicates to us through His Word, and by His Spirit, and both come to us through the still small voice as we read and pray and live for God. Are you listening today? Are we open to what God wants to say through His Word? Are we listening throughout the day for the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us? Oh listen dear soul!
3) A PASSION FOR GOD'S POWER- In II Kings 4, the son of the Shunammite had died. Elijah sent his servant with his rod, but nothing had happened. Now he goes into the room, shuts the door, and starts praying to the LORD about the dead child. He lays on the child, mouth to mouth, eyes to eyes, hands on hands, etc. The child is waxing warm. Now in verse 35, it says: "Then he returned, and walked in the house to and fro; and went up, and stretched himself upon him: and the child sneezed seven times, and the child opened his eyes." Now here is the thought... he "walked in the house to and fro". What was he doing here? He was pacing the floor begging God for the life of the child. He was passionate about the power of God meeting the need of the child and his mother. Oh how we ought to get passionate about God's power on our lives!!! We desperately need God and His power!! Not for us to accomplish our desires, but to be used of God to do His bidding! Oh help me Lord!
Well, my time is gone. There are garage sales awaiting my wife and I asked if I could drive her around. Don't enjoy the sales, but do enjoy the time with her. May God bless you and yours! Pastor Mike Mutchler