Biblical Story Of Elijah And The Prophet Of Baal
KEY SCRIPTURES: 1 Kings 18:1-40; Exodus 20:3-5
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Exodus 20:3,5 “You shall have no other gods before me. 20:5 “You shall not bow down yourself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me.”
Elijah was a prophet in Israel who was first mentioned in 1 Kings 17 in the bible when he proclaimed a drought as a result for the evil deeds of King Ahab and swore in the name of God that rain would cease to fall in the entire region. This decree would remain in place until he, Elijah, would revoke it. After the proclamation, God instructed him to hide himself and from where he was hiding, raven brought him food every morning and evening and he drank from the seasonal river until the river dried up due to lack of rain. After the river dried up, God instructed him to get to Zarephath in which a widow has been prepared to sustain him. The drought was fierce, and it lasted for three years. God was able to sustain the widow and Elijah for three years and after the third year of drought, God instructed Elijah to appear before King Ahab in order to remove the harsh decree from the land. King Ahab who married Jezebel who led him to pagan worship wanted to kill the prophets of God when the drought raged the land which included Elijah before he went into hiding.
During the fierce drought in the land, King Ahab joined his chief of staff, Obadiah in search for animal fodder to save the animals and this they did by dividing the region, each of them taking one part of the region. Obadiah, who was a righteous man, hid one hundred prophets of God in the cave and provided sustenance for them when Jezebel was threatening to kill all the prophets of God. During the searching for animal fodder, Obadiah met Elijah on the way who instructed him that he would like to speak to King Ahab. Seeing how terrified Obadiah was to do this, Elijah swore to him that he would indeed appear before Ahab and not disappear as he had done before. Obadiah conveyed to Ahab that Elijah was in the vicinity, and Ahab made his way towards Elijah. After King Ahab met with Prophet Elijah, Elijah said that if the king wanted any rain to fall, he was to gather the entire people on Mount Carmel including the entire cohort of eight hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and Asherah, another small goddess. King Ahab decided to do what Elijah requested. While the people came and in anticipation of what to expect, four hundred prophets of Baal came but the four hundred prophets of Asherah didn’t show up. Elijah proceeded in telling the people to choose the God they want to follow. The people were quiet and reasoned in their heart on how they had neglected the true God but were also not ready to let go of Baal, when Elijah saw this, he brought forward a test. Elijah proposed that two sacrifices should be brought, and the god who would answer the call by sending a fire to consume it, He would be deemed the true god. The people eagerly agreed. Although he was outnumbered, he had faith in the one true God.
The prophet of Baal slaughtered their sacrifice on the altar and though they shouted from morning to evening, no fire consumed the sacrifice even when Elijah was mocking them, nothing happened. When it was Elijah’s turn, he went ahead to repair the altar of God, he took twelve stones which represents the twelve tribes of Israel, slaughtered the sacrifice and even took the three pitchers to pour water on the sacrifice three times which still represent the twelve tribes of Israel. After all these have been done, during the evening time of worship, Elijah prayed to God to show himself to the people has the only true God and immediately fire fell from heaven and consumed the sacrifice even licking up the water. After the fire, Elijah instructed the killing of all the prophet of Baal. There are several lessons to learn from the biblical story of Elijah and the prophets of Baal and some will be mentioned in this article.
- ALL RELIGIONS ARE NOT THE SAME: John 14:6
God is the only true God; no man made gods can compare to Him. Jesus is the only way to the father and without Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, eternal life in the kingdom of God is not guaranteed. You can serve God and Mammon together. As Believers, we need to be dedicated to serving the only true God, we should never allow the cares of this word to kill our love for God. The world needs to know we are true ambassadors of Christ just like Elijah did in Mount Carmel. God is always ready to answer His believers anytime they call on Him. God doesn’t not sleep, or slumber and He is never tired of answering prayers. As believers, we should always remember that there is only one way to heaven. Don’t miss it.
2. ACTIVITIES DOESN’T EQUATE TO SPIRITUALITY
Just as the prophet of Baal thought that through their activities and works, fire will come down from heaven, we should not think working for God equates walking with God. We should learn to be profitable servants by first developing a deeper relationship with God to know Him deeper instead of jumping into activities that profit nothing. If The prophets of Baal knew Baal on deeper levels, they would have been conscious of the fact that they are serving a powerless and fake god. It is not every doctrine one brings to your table as believers, one should give ears to, we should learn to test all spirits. The children of Israel adhere to all doctrines brought to them and these made them neglect the commandments of the one true God which caused total hardship in the land.
3. HAVE FAITH IN THE ONLY TRUE GOD
Like the children of Israel, they displaced their faith and began to serve idols despite having prophets to guide them in the way, even King Ahab married a strange woman, who cast a spell on him and led him to worshiping idols hereby committing evil deeds more than previous kings of Israel. It was Elijah that was able to remind them that their faith was displaced. As Christians, we should develop strong faith in the only true God like Elijah and believe that when He asks you to do things, He will bring it to completion. Elijah never allows doubt into this life despite being outnumbered, we should never
doubt the power of the only living God. We should trust and obey completely.
God is the only powerful God that answers by fire, he will never delay or leave you, He is ready to sustain you when He calls you to do things for Him. Don’t hesitate to believe and obey God completely. He is the only true and living God.