Original Entry Date
There's so much to digest with this Biblical connection. Our main text will be 1 Kings 18:17-40. At this time there was a severe drought and famine over the land. God had brought this drought over Israel because Ahab, king of Israel, was married to the wicked Jezebel who led the people to serve the false god, Baal, disregarding the commandment of the Lord. Jezebel also went out slaughtering all the prophets of God. *Severe drought (dryness) and famine (hunger for Gods Word) this is how we are, spiritually before we turn to Christ. Elijah is commanded by God to go to Ahab so that He could bring rain upon the earth. He is met by Ahab and commands that all the prophets of Baal and Asherah meet him on Mount Carmel. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Kings+18%3A17-19&version=NKJV Elijah then begins a showdown between he, a single prophet of God, and the 550 or so prophets of Baal and Asherah. Who's God is the true, superior God? An alter with an offering will be set up for each side. Elijah mocks the false prophets as they call to their gods and no answer is heard. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Kings+18%3A20-29&version=NKJV Now it is Elijah's turn, he begins to build an alter to the Lord. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Kings+18%3A30-32&version=NKJV In verse 33 we read: 33 And he put the wood in order, cut the bull in pieces, and laid it on the wood, and said, “Fill four waterpots with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood.” *The flesh of the bull; cut into pieces symbolizes us dying to ourselves and offering ourselves as a sacrifice for Christ. [read 2 Cor. 5:14,15] Jesus describes it as a grain of wheat dying. [read John 12:24] In verses 33-35 we read: 33 And he put the wood in order, cut the bull in pieces, and laid it on the wood, and said, “Fill four waterpots with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood.” 34 Then he said, “Do it a second time,” and they did it a second time; and he said, “Do it a third time,” and they did it a third time. 35 So the water ran all around the altar; and he also filled the trench with water. *The water is a symbolization of the cleansing and purification of Christ; He brings regeneration to our souls, washing us clean. [read Isaiah 1:18] Jesus proclaims to Peter that He must wash his feet to take part in Him. [read John 13:8] God washes us when we are reborn [read Ezekiel 16:8,9] *Review verse 34: Here is a symbol of the Trinity, Father, Word and Spirit are One, [read 1 John 5:6-7] *Review verse 35: The trench filling with water symbolizes how having faith in Christ will cause rivers of living water to come forth. [read John 7:38] Elijah now calls to the Living God to send fire down upon the burnt offering so the people of Israel would turn their hearts back to Him. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Kings+18%3A36-40&version=NKJV In verse 38 we read: 38 Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench. *Now we see a symbolization of the filling of the Holy Spirit. [read Luke 3:16] The sacrifice was acceptable to the Lord so He sent His fire down upon it. The fire also represents the refining process that is to take place in every believer's life as Jesus said. [read Mark 9:49] Refining us with fire is God's way of testing us. [read Psalm 66:10-12 and Isaiah 48:10] God's people are all tested with fire.[read Zechariah 13:9] Refining may be painful but it is a very good thing. [read Revelation 3:18] This process will be done to the just who are wise and understand. The wicked will not understand it. [read Daniel 12:10] Those who are wise will understand that the trials of life produce the fruit of patience. [read James 1:2,3] Have joy when facing these trials, keeping the faith in the outcome which is our salvation. [read 1 Peter 1:6-9] In verse 39 we read: 39 Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, “The Lord, He is God! The Lord, He is God!” *God is given the glory, not the work of men. In verse 40 we read: 40 And Elijah said to them, “Seize the prophets of Baal! Do not let one of them escape!” So they seized them; and Elijah brought them down to the Brook Kishon and executed them there. *Here is a symbolization of how we must execute that which is not pleasing to God; the works of the flesh. [read Galatians 5:19-21] God refines us to remove such impurities as impatience. This brings about purity and the development of the fruits of the Spirit. [read Galatians 5:22-23] Let's review verses 25-29 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Kings+18%3A25-29&version=NKJV *The Baal and Ashteroth worshipers called out to their false gods. No fire came down from heaven which speaks a warning to us today: we cannot put our trust in that which is false, man made or of man's wisdom and expect it to change or refine us or to bring us salvation. We also need to be careful of deception by worshipping false gods who have an element that is similar to the true God. [read 1 Kings 12:26-33] In this scripture Israel and Judah are in rebellion against each other. Jeroboam, King of Israel, fears that if his people go to Jerusalem to worship their hearts will turn from him and he would be killed. He then has two golden calves for the people to worship so they do not have to travel such a distance. Shrines were made and people from all classes were called to be priests even though they were not of the sons of Levi. A false image of the Living God causes the people of Israel to be deceived. Only the One and True, Living God can refine us as we read in Malachi 3:3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, And purge them as gold and silver, That they may offer to the Lord An offering in righteousness.
Prayer: A Prayer of Thanks for God’s Friendship
Original Entry Date 12/21/2010: Thank you, Dear Father, for being a true friend, always there when I am in need. You lift my spirit to places never ventured before. I feel Your warmth…like a blazing forest fire. I praise You for You are the Ultimate and Supreme Force…I bow down and You lift me up…You heal my broken heart…You bandage my severed limbs. Without You I am nothing, idle in place. With You I can do all. I will shed these tears that I have held in for so long…You will always take me into Your arms and wipe them from my cheek. I praise You God! I need and I crave You Always. Amen!