Story: Elijah and the Baal Prophets
1 Kings 18:16-39
Note: For the story, I will briefly mention events for context to get the whole story be sure to check out the story in your Bibles or online starting from 1 Kings 17 to 2nd Kings 2.
Following years of wickedness, King Ahab of Israel had spread across the land and many of the people had fallen to worship of Baal and other false Gods. Along came Elijah, a prophet of God who called a 3-year drought upon Israel who was already suffering badly. He went into hiding for which time he became the last remaining prophet of God, during this time Elijah was constantly provided for by God. After the three years had passed, he challenged Ahab and the Baal prophets to see which God was the true one. It would be shown by which God responded by setting fire to their sacrifice. The Baal prophets went first and tried with everything they had to call out, but there came no response. Elijah’s turn now came, he covered his altar in water and poured it onto the altar and spoke a prayer, and without hesitation, fire came down and consumed the altar entirely. The prophets of Baal were left in terror and the people of Israel began to turn their eyes back to God.
We hear about Elijah who had to constantly hide from his enemies who never stopped looking for him, face the King of Israel and the prophets of Baal alone. Elijah may even have had his struggles himself during this time, but he knew had to trust God.
His willingness to put his faith in God gave us one of the greatest stories in the Old Testament where we get to see this amazing moment of repentance for Israel. Where God revealed his power through a mighty display of fire that led the people back to him.
We hear about Elijah who had to constantly have to hide from his enemies who never stopped looking for him, face the King of Israel and the prophets of Baal alone. Elijah may even have had his struggles himself during this time, but because of the trust he had God was able to complete his work through him.
Elijah undertook what nobody else was willing to do, he stood with God in front of the very people who wanted him killed.
This is one of the hardest things for us to do as believers. We are afraid to put our full faith in God. We may trust him to take care of us in our struggles, but when we are called to stand out we find ourselves hiding away instead.
Think about Elijah as he stood on the mountain, surrounded by the Baal prophets. He remained confident that God would deliver on his word, he even went as far as to mock the idol they worshipped.
When the time came, Elijah’s first move was to cover his altar with water. This obviously wasn’t obviously the best idea for something you want to set on fire. But God had a plan he was working through Elijah, when the fire came it “licked up the water in the trench” (verse 38). After that, there was no question of belief from the people of Israel that day.
Moses, Noah, Joseph and the disciples are all other major examples of those who achieved tremendous things because of the trust they had in God. They had to all stand with God even if it meant doing it alone, when we do the same, God reveals his plan for us.
6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.– Proverbs 3:6