1 Kings 18-20


In Chapter 18 the Lord sent Elijah back to Israel to confront Ahab. God is going to end the drought. Ahab is searching for Elijah and Jezebel is killing the prophets of God. Elijah finds Ahab and challenges the prophets of Baal to offer sacrifices and call down fire from heaven to show who is God. The Prophets of Baal try and try but there is no fire. Elijah drenches the altar with precious water and calls down fire from heaven. The people respond that the God of Elijah is God. The prophets of Baal are killed and Elijah tells Ahab to eat and drink for it is going to rain.

Elijah must have expected a great victory and change coming to Israel for he outran Ahab and his chariot to Jezreel. Instead he receives a death threat from Jezebel. Elijah becomes afraid and runs for his life. He is so depressed he wants to die but fortunately he is running from the one who wants to kill him. He runs for forty days and nights to Mount Horeb where the law was given to Moses and Israel.

God meets Elijah at the mountain and asks him why he is there. His reply is that they have killed all the prophets and torn down the altars and he is the only one left. This is not true but it is clearly what he is thinking. He took forty days to make a 10-15 day journey so he must have been running his thinking over and over in his mind. He is feeling alone and helpless but he did come to the right place.

God reveals himself to Elijah and gives him a list of things to get done. God also tells Elijah that he is not alone but that God has 7000 people in the land who have not worshiped Baal.

Jesus said in John 8:33 that truth will set you free. Fear had caused Elijah to believe the threat against his life. In his thinking he had an expectation as to how everything was going to come out. When what he had planned did not happen he lost direction and not only wandered in his journey but let his mind wander as well. He convinced himself that he was the only prophet left and he could see no hope. In short, he was isolated until he heard God’s voice.

Exhaustion, unmet expectations, especially unrealistic expectations, focusing not on truth but on what we think is the truth, and running those thoughts over and over in our mind, is the perfect environment for isolation and depression.  

Elijah thought he knew what the outcome would be but only God knew what was ahead. God responded with rest and provision on his journey.  God also revealed to Elijah the truth, and gave his plan for Elijah to get his thinking back on track.  With his thinking Elijah was attempting to be god. When he found his plan was out of his control it sent him on a tail spin and he was about to crash. When he sought God and listened to God, God brought order to his life.  Elijah had to let go of his plan and thinking and let God be in control.

When tempted to isolate hang out with God and listen.

Pastor Dave