THE PRESENCE OF GOD: THE SUBDUING FORCE

THE PRESENCE OF GOD: THE SUBDUING FORCE

1Kings 18:46 – 19: 1- 3
Then the hand of the Lord came upon Elijah; and he girded up his loins and ran ahead of Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel. 1 And Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, also how he had executed all the prophets with the sword. 2 Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time.” 3 And when he saw that, he arose and ran for his life, and went to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there.

Our scripture for today begins from 1 Kings 18:46 and ends in 1 Kings 19:1-13 , highlighting the experiences of the Prophet Elijah shortly after he outran the chariot of Ahab. The opening statement of 1 Kings 18:46 says, “The hand of the Lord was upon Elijah”, which is another term for the empowering presence of God. It was the enabling force behind Elijah’s extraordinary exploits in ministry – like outrunning a chariot, which is the modern day equivalent of car.

Interestingly, every believer in Christ has been equipped with the Spirit of God that makes the expression of the hand of God an everyday possibility. The hand of God is not limited to the work of ministry alone; it is relevant in business, relationships and career pursuits. However, it takes faith and obedience to make it a reality.

Elijah was bubbling with great expectations when he entered into the city of Jezreel. Suddenly, he received a death threat from Jezebel as a welcome message.  And in a manner totally different from the usual, Elijah runs for his life. His action stirs up a disturbing question – was the death threat superior to the hand of God upon Elijah? The prophet Isaiah puts forward the same question with these words, “Was my arm too short to deliver you? Do I lack the strength to rescue you? (Isaiah 50: 2 NIV).  Certainly the hand of God upon Elijah was sufficient to contain a million death threats! It is important to note that as soon as Elijah began to focus on himself and his inadequacies, the threat began to achieve its aim – the reality of the hand of God became obscured (see 1Kings 19:4). Focus is a very critical factor when you face any kind of threat.

Beloved, the threat you might be facing right now may be totally different from what Elijah was confronted with, but it is still a threat. Hear the voice of God concerning that threat, “Every threat that stands before you like a mountain will melt like candle wax in My presence. Be still and know that I am with you and I will never leave nor forsake you”.

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