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1 Kings 18-19
1 Kings 18
This chapter talks about how prophet Elijah met up with King Ahab and challenged the prophets of Baal and Asherah to show who is the true god
1 Kings 18:19, 20 NIV: "Now summon the people from all over Israel to meet me on Mount Carmel. And bring the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who eat at Jezebel’s table." So Ahab sent word throughout all Israel and assembled the prophets on Mount Carmel.
Elijah questions the people on who they really believe in, but they said nothing. They could not make the choice. So Elijah challenges the prophets of Baal and Asherah to call on their gods to set fire on a bull, and they exert so much effort calling on their gods, to no avail. Elijah even taunts them to shout louder, and they even slashed themselves with their swords and their gods had no response.
Finally, it was time for Elijah to call on the Lord, and yes, after the preparation, and even pouring of a lot of water to make it more difficult to set a fire, God responded to the call of Elijah. And only then did the people make their choice.
Who or what do we worship? is it God or are we controlled by the wordly things around us? God Let us make our choice. Let us be faithful to God alone, for God alone responds to us. Not the false gods, they have nothing and can do nothing for us.
1 Kings 18:28, 29 NIV: "So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed. Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice. But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention."
Mark 11:22-24 NIV: "Have faith in God," Jesus answered. "Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
In the first of the ten commandments God said: "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me.
Being the FIRST commandment, this has to be the most important commandment of God. Therefore, our God specifically commands us NOT to have any other gods before Him.
Exodus 20:5 NIV: "You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, "
1 Kings 18:40 NIV: "Then Elijah commanded them, "Seize the prophets of Baal. Don’t let anyone get away!" They seized them, and Elijah had them brought down to the Kishon Valley and slaughtered there."
The guilty are punished. After the prophets failed to get their gods to respond, they were punished. God gave us the commandments. We must heed them and know that there are consequences we will have to face the moment we decide to disobey His commandments.
We make the choice. God gave His only Son to die for us on the cross, to save us from sin. God sent the Holy Spirit to give us wisdom and knowledge to choose right from wrong. Let us not play in between. Let us choose either to serve one and only God, or to serve our worldly desires. We know what is right, and when we make the choice, we should be ready to take the consequences, for God forgives, but the guilty is punished.
Exodus 34:6, 7 NIV: "And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, "The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation."