God Prepares Us For Battle

God Prepares us For Battle – It isn’t always what we expect.

1 Kings 17:1-7

Now Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.”
2 Then the word of the LORD came to Elijah: 3 “Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. 4 You will drink from the brook, and I have ordered the ravens to feed you there.”
5 So he did what the LORD had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. 6 The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.
7 Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land.

What the heck is going on? Elijah gets into the King’s face. He tells them these terrible things are going to happen. This took guts; this took courage. God’s next step is to have Elijah run away and hide in Kerith.

Run Away and Hide
2 Then the word of the LORD came to Elijah: 3 “Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan.

Kerith means “to cut off, to cut down.” God is calling Elijah to cut off from the people and God is going to cut him down. Why?

He has strength, but we can make an argument that he is not a man of God yet. He is Elijah, the Tishbite, but by the end he is called Elijah, a man of God.

Elijah is going to do great things for God, but he needs to be trained. In a sense, he is going to boot camp.
Why hide?
One reason Elijah is sent into hiding is because Ahab wants to kill him.
The second reason is because the drought is about to happen. This area is used to going without water for weeks or maybe even a month or two. There has to be a prolonged time with no rain or dew. They have to see Elijah’s words were from God.
The third reason is that Elijah needs more training. Elijah is going to do great things.

If we are going to do God’s work we have to get rid of self and grab onto God.

Become Dependent on God
4 You will drink from the brook, and I have ordered the ravens to feed you there.”

This was a strange approach. Ravens will feed Elijah. God doesn’t do the logical. When God gives a crazy plan, our response should be to think that something amazing is going to happen here.

Verse 5 can be translated “So he went and did according to the word of the Lord, for he went and lived by the brook Kerith, which is east of the Jordan.”

He lived. He didn’t exist. He didn’t bide his time. He lived there. He made a residence. That was his home for about a year.

What?!
6 The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.
7 Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land.

There was no water. You can’t survive without water, especially in that area. What is going on? There was a drought. It would be easy to think everyone else suffers, but not Elijah.

Things change and we feel forsaken. In those difficult times, it is hard to remember that God is still alive and well and He knows what he is doing.

It is easy to forget Isaiah 49:16 “I have indelibly imprinted a picture of you on the palm of each my hands.”

We can feel like God is sabotaging everything.

We see the difficult times as God leaving us or being upset with us. The difficult times can be God getting us where He wants us so that amazing things can happen.

Lesson from Elijah’s Boot Camp we can reflect on:
1. We need to be set aside so we can listen. We need to get away from the noise of life be and alone with God and let Him speak to us. We need to get away from busyness, agendas and our own desires.
2. God’s direction=God’s Provision – When God sends us, He will provide for us. It may not be what we think, but He will provide.
3. Trust God One Day at a Time – Yeah, it can sound cliché. So many times God only tells us the next step not the next three steps. We need to discover our next step.
4. Dried up Brook – is often a sign of God’s pleasure, not disappointment in our life. Look to see God working in areas you think He may be displeased.

Read – 1 Kings 4-6 and 17

James Watson
Pastor

July 7, 2019

Heroism and Genuine Humility Amidst Relentless Pressure

“God Prepares Us for Battle”

1King 17:1-7, Isaiah 49:16

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