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When Love's Voice Gets Tuned Out

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Tuned In To Static

Fire From Heaven

In , Elijah has just performed one of the most prolific miracles in the Bible. He built an altar to God and placed a bull on it. He then soaks the altar with over 7.3 liters of water!
How many know it’s hard to start a fire with soaked wood?
In , Elijah finds himself in isolation (remember, solitude is good, isolation is bad). He has just performed one of the most incredible miracles and victories, and because of a message sent from the queen, he runs away. He ends up in a cave - it says that he lodged in it, that means he's there for a minute.
So Elijah then prays to God and God answers Elijah’s prayer and consumes the bull sacrifice AND the altar.
1 Kings 18:38 ESV
Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering and the wood and the stones and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.
Picture of Elijah at the Altar on fire

False Prophets Slaughtered

Immediately after this, he instructs the people to seize the 450 prophets of Baal and slaughter them. And that’s exactly what happened.

Heavy Rain Ends the Drought

Then Elijah continues to ask God to show Himself mighty, and pleads for it to rain on a land that hadn’t seen rain in 3.5 years.

14-Mile Cross Country with Bad News

Elijah then runs 14 miles and beats a horse and chariot!
King Ahab tells Queen Jezebel the news, that her 450 prophets of Baal are now dead.

The Queen’s Reaction

The queen threatens Elijah by her gods,
1 Kings 19:3 ESV
Then he was afraid, and he arose and ran for his life and came to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there.
1 Kings 19:2 ESV
Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So may the gods do to me and more also, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by this time tomorrow.”
Jezebel was saying…one of us is going to be dead by this time tomorrow.
For someone who just experienced these great things of God over the past 24 hours, you would think Elijah wouldn’t be afraid.
INSTEAD...
Elijah finds himself in isolation (remember, solitude is good, isolation is bad). He has just performed one of the most incredible miracles and victories, and because of a message sent from the queen, he runs away. He ends up in a cave - it says that he lodged in it, that means he's there for a minute.

Changing Your Station

1 Kings 19:9–10 ESV
There he came to a cave and lodged in it. And behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and he said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.”
What would your response be to God, as He asks you, “What are you doing here?”After Elijah’s response, God does this for him...
1 Kings 19:11–13 ESV
And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. And when Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
Commentary Exegesis (a critical explanation or interpretation of a text):
a. God knew what the depressed and discouraged Elijah needed. He needed a personal encounter with God. There was nothing fundamentally wrong with Elijah’s theology, but at the time there was something lacking in his experience.

Elijah’s Theology

Many times when we face opposition with the world, we take a step back because we don’t like opposition. If we look at Jesus’ time spent on earth, he faced opposition in almost everything that either He did or His disciples did.
eating on the Sabbath
healing on the Sabbath
not fasting
communing with sinner
Like Elijah, we find ourselves doing the right thing, following God’s voice, but then we might get met with opposition from a friend and we find ourselves tuning out of what God is saying.
b. God brought His presence before Elijah, but first to show where He was not. The Lord was not in the wind, He was not in the earthquake, He was not in the fire. Like many others, Elijah probably only looked for God in dramatic manifestations. Certainly, God sometimes appears in such ways but He often appears in less dramatic surroundings.
Like many others, Elijah probably only looked for God in dramatic manifestations. Certainly, God sometimes appears in such ways but He often appears in less dramatic surroundings.

God’s Broadcast

1 Kings 19:12–13 ESV
And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. And when Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
As soon as Elijah filtered through the static, he tuned into God’s voice that he had heard so many times before that.

Assurance & Discernment

Elijah’s Response…is exactly the same thing he said to God before. There was some sort of healing that was taking place in Elijah to get his feelings out to God. God meets Elijah outside the cave and responds to Elijah’s comments...
1 Kings 19:14–18 ESV
He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” And the Lord said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. And Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint to be king over Israel, and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint to be prophet in your place. And the one who escapes from the sword of Hazael shall Jehu put to death, and the one who escapes from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha put to death. Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.”
In the end, God responds with some action items for Elijah to carry out. He then ends by saying, there are 7,000 in Israel that have not fallen to wicked ways! Elijah thought he was all by himself, and it turns out there were plenty of others around that were in the same place he was.
This both assured Elijah that he was not alone and that his work as a prophet had indeed been fruitful.

My Encouragement

My encouragement to you, is that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
It may feel like you have been deserted, or left to die - but I promise, God is right there with you. He’s speaking and encouraging you - He’s working in the background bringing order to the chaotic world.

Prayer Point: Reverence, Repentance, Refreshing

Prayer Point: Direction

Prayer Point: Discernment & Assurance

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