Rain is going to fall in Israel again. Revival is on the way. Elijah is on his face before God in repentant prayer
1 Kings 18:43 “’Go and look toward the sea,’ he (Elijah) told his servant. And he went up and looked. ‘There is nothing there,’ he (the servant) said. Seven times Elijah said, ‘Go back.’”
“What did you see?” “I saw the sea. There’s nothing else out there.” “Well, go look again. Keep looking.” Elijah made his servant go back seven times and each time the servant kept saying, “There is nothing there. Nothing is happening. Things just keep getting worse.”
After two or three times, we start to get discouraged and filled with all kinds of doubt if we’re not seeing any results from our prayers. We’re doing the right thing. Why isn’t it working? We want the crisis to get over with quickly so we don’t have to deal with it anymore.
But the Bible tells us not to become tired of doing what His word tells us to do. We’ll see awesome results if we don’t get discouraged and quit. Elijah refused to give up.
1 Kings 18:44a “The seventh time the servant reported, ‘A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.’”
At first, the servant didn’t see anything so he didn’t think anything was happening. Now he finally sees a small cloud, but he still doesn’t think it means very much. The servant saw a small cloud, but Elijah heard the sound of a heavy rain. Elijah could hear the rain long before his servant could see the cloud. Our faith doesn’t come from what we see or what we think we see. Our faith comes from hearing the word of God.
1 Kings 18:44b “So Elijah said, ‘Go and tell Ahab, ‘hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’”
Elijah didn’t have to get wet to know it was raining. He didn’t even need to see the cloud. The Lord said it and Elijah could hear it. Faith comes from what we hear, not from is, what we see or think we see.
Faith comes from hearing the message and the message is heard through the word of Christ.” (Romans 10 17)
Elijah felt wet as soon as the Lord told him He was going to send the rain. Like Elijah, weneed to stop looking and start hearing. Stop looking at what we have or don’t have and begin praising the Lord for “the sound of a heavy rain.” We’ll never become discouraged by what we’re seeing as long as we keep hearing, keep believing and keep trusting in what God’s word is saying.
1 Kings 18:45 “Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain came on and Ahab rode off to Jezreel’”
“Meanwhile.” as they were speaking – It happened so fast, the rain came so quickly, the servant never got the chance to leave. God keeps working as time keeps passing. It may seem like the Lord is never going to answer prayer, but when the Lord moves, He moves quickly and we need to be ready to move with Him.
1 Kings 18:46 “The power of the Lord came upon Elijah and , tucking his cloak into his belt, he ran ahead of Ahab all the way to Jezreel.”
There are two ways to travel, two ways to live our lives. We can make our own way through life relying on our own strength, our own determination, our own understanding and our own abilities like King Ahab did or we can depend on the power of the Holy Spirit like Elijah did. Why ride when we can fly? Ahab rode in a chariot. Elijah ran on foot and he got there ahead of Ahab. Depending on the Holy Spirit is so much easier, so much quicker, so much more effective and so much more reliable than anything we could ever design or imagine on our own. Lord willing, we pick it up again from here next Tuesday. Thanks for getting in God’s word with Pastor Buj.