2019-05-26_god-always-shows-up

Scripture: 1 Kings 19:9-16

9There he came to a cave and lodged in it. And behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and [God] said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 10He 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.” 11And 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.12And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. 13And 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?” 14He 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.” 15And 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. 16And 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.

 

Thrust: God will always show up—even at the most unexpected place and the most inconvenient time—for His people who’re in trouble.

 

1. Satan’s Ploy

Jezebel, the Handmaid of Satan
  • Swore by the gods to kill Elijah
  • Then he was afraid, and he arose and ran for his life” (v.3)
  • I have not troubled Israel, but you have, and your father’s house, because you have abandoned the commandments of the Lord and followed the Baals.” (v.19)

 

2. Elijah’s Plight

Mt. Carmel to Beersheba – 185km

Having spent all his energy, he sought God’s permission to die.

He slept, and an angel came and woke him up, and he got up and ate a cake cooked over an oven and drank a jar of water. He lay down again. For a second time, the angel of the Lord came and woke him up, and told him to eat and drink.

After consuming this heavenly provision, he travelled 40 days and 40 nights to Horeb.

Beersheba to Mt Horeb – 420km

Observations of and Applications to Elijah’s Plight

Elijah’s Fear

  • Real but not rational
  • Elijah did spectacular feats
    • Raised widow’s son in Zaraphath
    • Won contest against Baal’s 450 prophets
    • Held back rain and prayed for rain to pour

When I am afraid, I put my trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me? All day long they injure my cause; all their thoughts are against me for evil. They stir up strife, they lurk; they watch my steps, as they
have waited for my life. (Psa. 56:3-6)

 

3. Yahweh’s Presence

  • What are you doing here, Elijah?”
  • 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.”
  • Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord”

Not in the wind, not in the earthquake, not in the fire, but in “the sound of a low whisper“.

  • qol demamah daqqah

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. (vv.15-17)

 

Challenge

  1. Don’t let down your spiritual guard
  2. God will never let you down: He’s always there for you
  3. Remedy for burnt out is not cessation from work but more work commissioned by God
  4. God will always show up—but not according to human terms
  5. Don’t go looking for God in all the wrong places at wrong times with wrong motives
  6. Whatever situation you may be in, keep these truths before your eyes:
    • God’s hand is never too short to reach down to us.
    • His ears are never too clogged to hear us
    • His eyes are never too heavy to open and watch us
    • He is a present help in times of need and trouble
    • He’s a shelter in the time of storm

 

 

By: Rev. Peter Lui

 

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