Friday, July 29, 2016

There are Yet Seven Thousand and Many More

"Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him." (1 Kings 19:18)

Elijah the prophet was despondent.

He had done everything in his power to stop the evil overwhelming Israel.

He had killed scores of wicked false priests and prophets.

He had conducted an incredible sacrifice which gave God all the glory.

And then ... Jezebel whiffed a simple threat.

Elijah got scared, ran away, then sunk under a broom tree.

"But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. 5And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat." (1 Kings 19: 4-5)

He thought that he had to do everything else.

Instead of making him get busy and get to work, the LORD had him rest, eat, drink, and rest again.

All that time, the LORD was taking care of his enemies;

"Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over." (Psalm 23:5)

Later on, Elijah was still complaining as though he had to do all the fighting:

"4And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: because the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away." (1 Kings 19:14)

Ntotice that word "I".

We can do nothing of ourselves. We need the Savior, Jesus, every day helping us, leading us, guiding us, blessing and building us.

God corrects Elijah's self-righteous resignation:

"Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him." (1 Kings 19: 18)

Paul the apostle references this verse in his letter to the Romans:

"I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. 2God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying, 3Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. 4But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal. 5Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. 6And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work." (Romans 11:1-6)

Note that Paul is talking about a seemingly hopeless situation--that the Israelites will be lost because they rejected Jesus.

And yet .. that is not the case, for those who believe on Him!

In fact, we must never think that our lives, that the challenges in our lives are all up to us.

Jesus has done the work of saving us, and He is working within us for all things:

"Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure." (Philippians 2: 12-13)

We are not fighting on our own. We are not alone.

He is a GOD to us! (Hebrews 8: 10-12)

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