God is about to do something in our nation that we have not even dreamed of. I know that the coming of Jesus is near and I have no prediction of when it is going to happen, but what I do know is that we must work until Jesus comes back or we go home to be with Him. We must reach out to this dark world with God’s love and His light. We need to have more people like Elijah. Elijah was a man for his times and he is a man for our times. The times that Elijah lived in was much like the days we live in. It was a time of great evil. The kings were evil and with the kings being evil the people were also. They worshipped idols and other gods. We do the same in our day.
“Then he set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. And Ahab made a wooden image. Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him.” (1 Kings 16:33-34) Ahab was King at the time of Elijah and he was one of the most evil kings in history.
“The times in which Elijah flourished were characterized by an atmosphere of spiritual degeneration. It was a demonic atmosphere in which Elijah ministered. Baal means “lord, master, owner, possessor.” To worship Baal was to open one’s heart to the demonic world. Every Christian needs to learn not to play fast and loose with the demonic—such as playing with a Ouija board, following your astrology chart or going to a fortune-teller. Avoid these with all your heart. In the case of Ahab, there was more, for he rebuilt Jericho and did so in the face of Joshua’s pronouncement generations before: “Cursed before the LORD is the man who undertakes to rebuild this city, Jericho” (Joshua 6:26). How would you like to live in an atmosphere like that? Many ministers today look for a church that is already established or want to preach where there are many Christians. They want to be in a Bible belt. Elijah did not have that privilege. God looks for people who will go outside their comfort zones. Part of the genius of the apostle Paul, for example, was that he wanted to go where the Gospel had not been known. We need God’s light out of the church and into the world.
“J. Oswald Sanders writes in an old work, Robust in Faith, “Elijah appeared at zero hour in Israel’s history…. Like a meteor, he flashed across the inky blackness of Israel’s spiritual night.” Nobody could have handled a couple like Ahab and Jezebel better than Elijah. The rugged, prophet from Tishbeh became God’s instrument of confrontation.
Ahab married Jezebel and this made matters worse. “F. B. Meyer calls Jezebel the Lady Macbeth of the Old Testament. She bore all of the markings of demon possession, and according to the record of her deeds, she was, in fact, Satan’s woman of the hour. In spiritual terms, this was a time of complete despair. The chasm between God and His people had reached its widest breadth. We see this darkness in our nation today.
This is the first of my random writings on Elijah. We will be looking at just who this man Elijah was and what we need to do in order to change our world for God.