1 Kings 20-21
I neglected to mention at the end of yesterday’s “You are Not Alone” devotion that one excellent way to battle the weary, lonely depression that sometimes falls upon those who speak for God is to find a partner in ministry – work together with one you can mentor. At the end of chapter 19 Elijah found Elisha. Some Bible scholars suggest they worked together about 6 years, but I found another that thought it could have been closer to 23 years. Regardless of the length of time, I believe it is safe to say the apprenticeship was a mutual blessing to both Elijah and Elisha – and likely multiplied the work that either one could have done on their own. Elisha will have a very long and powerful ministry for the LORD, but what would it have looked like if he had not had the opportunity to serve under Elijah? Who are you serving under? Who are you mentoring?
It is interesting that in the next chapter neither Elijah nor Elisha are mentioned, but at least twice a prophet or son of a prophet speaks to evil King Ahab – once to tell him how to be victorious over the attacking Ben-Hadad of Aram, and once to reprimand him for being too leniant on Ben-Hadad when God delivered him into Ahab’s hand. This is further proof that Elijah was indeed not the only one left to stand for and speak for God. And proof, that while Elijah had very faithfully performed many deeds and sermons for God – God did not need Elijah. The Almighty can call any man or woman – or rock – to work for Him. I do believe when the city walls fall down on 27,000 fleeing enemy soldiers God’s rocks were at work – perhaps others would have merely called it a coincidence or an earthquake (1 Kings 20:30).
It can truly be amazing who and what God uses – even the evilest king who had ever lived. Sure, enough, when God wanted to show HIS strength against the advancing foreign army – He tells Ahab the winning battle plans through a prophet and Ahab somewhat surprisingly listens and follows along – to a point. And, in the last chapter of today’s reading we will even see Ahab repentant – for a time. There is no heart God can’t soften and change or use for His glory.
But, you are just asking for trouble if you choose to hang out with the bad girls (or in Ahab’s case, his wicked wife). They have done a lot of evil things but how many commandments do they manage to break when Ahab decides he would love to have a vegetable garden for his second palace? Once, again, sin snowballs. One leads to another and it grows larger and larger. With serious consequences.
Following the violent murder of innocent Naboth and the stealing of his property, Elijah is sent to condemn Ahab and Jezebel and foretell their own violent deaths – only partially put on hold by Ahab’s repentant spirit. Isn’t it good to know that God still sees the cruelty and injustice of the world today and His timeline is put in place to make all things right. There will be a time when all humanity meets their judge and will be held accountable for all their deeds and the condition of their hearts. Until that day may we faithfully carry His word – knowing that we are not alone!
Today’s Bible reading can be read or listened to at https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Kings+20-21&version=NIV
Tomorrow’s Bible reading will be 1 Kings 22 & 2 Chronicles 18 as we continue the seekgrowlove.com 2020 Chronological Bible Reading Plan