We all need to come to the place Elijah did….
Elijah had to learn that he was a dried-up brook, an empty flour barrel, a dead body. When Elijah recognized this, then God could use him. Martin Luther once said that God creates out of nothing. Until a man recognizes that he is nothing, God can do nothing with him. That is the problem with many of us today: we are too strong, we have too much ability, and God cannot use us. —J. Vernon McGee‘s Thru The Bible
1 Kings 17:5-12
5 So he went and did according unto the word of the Lord: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. 6 And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook. 7 And it came to pass after a while, that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land. 8 And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying, 9 Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee. 10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink. 11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand. 12 And she said, As the Lord thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.
The Lord asked Elijah something, to go. He went. God provided for him through the ravens. Some of Elijah’s provisions dried up. So God spoke and told him to go once again. He did. The Lord also told him there would be someone there to provide for him. A widow woman. But God did not tell Elijah she and her son had nothing to give….not really. They had lost all hope, they were ready to die. Elijah not knowing asked for water AND that she bake him a cake. Grrrrr. I can just imaging what possibly welled up in her. “We are sitting here with nothing, ready to die and you want me to bake you a cake!” I can almost hear her voice get a little higher as she talking to him.
Ya know that is how Elijah was when he was sent to her by the Lord; an empty barrel and he didn’t realize it.
Elijah asked this woman not to fear to bake the cake for him, then one for them. Naturally speaking that would be a little, well lets say, upsetting for me.
Elijah went on to tell her the Lord had said her barrel of cornmeal and pitcher of oil would not run out during the drought.
Okay, logic says, “you are crazy man. Take the last bit of meal and oil, make you a cake, AND then you think there will be some left for my son and me. AND you are also trying to tell me God has said I will not run out of food. You have got to be from “Mars” or something, this is crazy.”
She did it. She obeyed rather than fussing and fuming as I may have done.
She was blessed. She went back to her barrel of meal and the pitcher of oil and they were full. God had provided for her out of her obedience. (verses 13-16)
Something else Elijah didn’t know about himself, there was little spiritual life in him at this time.
Soon after this, not sure how soon, but the woman’s som became sick and died.
This time she fussed and fumed at Elijah. The good thing about Elijah, he didn’t listen to the “junk.” (verses 17-19)
Elijah went in his room shut the door and prayed. But his prayer was about himself and for the woman. (verse 20)
We need to learn to get out of ourselves and stop looking at ME/SELF.
This video may sem long but PLEASE take the time to veiw it, you will be blessed.
This time Elijah decided to get down to business with the Lord. Three times He prayed for this boy. Reminds me of Paul praying for his infirmity to be taken away, but God had a different answer for Paul (2 Cor 12:8-9) It also cause me to think (James 5:1-6) ….if any are sick, pray for them….anoint with oil…pray in faith….ferverant prayer of a righteous man avails much (has great power). But this is the power of God. This is the same power that raised Christ from the dead.
We that pray for one another ought to be in awe. We can have the power of God that raised His Son from the grave. I don’t know about you but astounds me. To think I can have that…..Lord Jesus I want this power of Christ in me.
Elijah got down to business with the Lord. He prayed with all he had. Why three times, I don’t really know, other than God required it of him. I also have wondered why he laid himself upon the boy…explaination, I am not sure other than….his prayer was a compassionate, heartfelt and persistence prayer. (Mat. 7:7-11; Luke 11:5-13; Luke 18:1-8) Elijah obeyed in God’s call here. The child was brought to him, so now what….you pray. How? Ask the Lord, He will direct you. “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth”…be quiet with the “but Lord” bit and ask Him ” what do you have for me in this, because I have nothing. Do we look at all things the Lord brings our way as a gift?…they are gifts….look at your perception. Obedience is better than sacrifice. (1 Sam. 15:22; Psalm 51:16-17) What was he sacrificing, himself.
Elijah now had learned a lesson. He came into this situation feeling like, “now what Lord?” To being used mightily of the Lord.
We need to realize we are nothing in ourselves. We are empty vessels. We can do a lot for the Lord, in the flesh, but that does not bring honor and glory to Jesus. We need to be empty vessels and full of the life of Christ. Without the life of Christ flowing through us our work for His is just spiritually dead. We need to be filled and flowing with the Life and Holy Spirit of Christ so that we may be used of God.
1 Kings 17:24
And the woman said to Elijah, Now by this I know that thou art a man of God, and that the word of the Lord in thy mouth is truth.
This woman and the people around her were idol worshippers. They witnessed the hand of God at work right in front of their eyes.This incident showed the widow and others that the power of the Lord as the true God contrasted greatly with the inability of Baal.
This revealed much to Elijah. He saw his own heart and what the Lord had brought him through.
Next time we will look at what happened to Elijah as a result of his obedience and come out of his empty and lifeless spiritual state he put himself in. We will address this also.
Until later. I love you and pray for you as you read these pages. God bless you and trusting you receive Gods daily grace and look straight and fully into His hope for each day.