Elijah said to Ahab, ”Now therefore, send and gather all Israel to me on Mount Carmel, the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who eat at Jezebel’s table. So Ahab sent for all the children of Israel and gather the prophets together on Mount Carmel” – 1 Kings 18 : 19 – 20.
When you believe and trust God fully, your word will become a command to people no matter the level of the person in the society, because He that is in you is greater than those that is outside. Ahab could not disobey Elijah because he knows the God that he serve. At times, we are afraid to carry out God’s instructions because we do not know whom we are or what we are carrying. That was why when God sent Moses to tell Pharaoh, to let My people go and worship Him, Moses gave series of reasons why Pharaoh cannot obey his word and God told Moses ”see, I have made you as God to Pharoah and AAron your brother shall be your prophet”. ( Exodus 7 : 1).
All we need in life to fulfil the purpose we were created is already in us. We have to rise up and change that grasshopper’s metality of ours because He did not create us as failures but rather as winners who always have authority.
And Elijah came to all the people and said, how long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him. But the people answered him not a word – 1 Kings 18 : 21.
The people refused to say a word because they thought in their mind that Elijah was already a failure and that he was waisting time. They were only seeing Elijah in the physical body since they were not in the spirit, they could not see the spiritual things.
Then Elijah said to the people, I alone am left a prophet of the Lord; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men. Therefore let them give us two bulls and let them choose one bull for themselves, cut it in pieces and lay it on the wood, but put no fire under it and I will prepare the other bull and lay it on the wood, but put no fire under it. Then you call on the name of your gods and I will call on the name of my Lord and the God who answers by fire, He is God. So all the people answered and said, it is well spoken – 1 Kings 18 : 22 – 24.
Despite the fact that Elijah was alone physically, he was ready to challenge 450 prophets of Baal including their gods. They were happy because they thought that the end of Elijah has finally come. Brethren, when you obey God and walk in holiness, in purity and you fear Him, He will prove whom He is to the world through you. You will come out victorious, your enemies will come and celebrate your victory with you. Trust Him and He will come to your rescue in a way that you will not expect.
Now Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, choose one bull for yourselves and prepare it first, for you are many and call on the name of your god, but put no fire under it – 1 Kings 18 : 25.
They trusted their gods and they were its servants because the bible says that whom you obey, the servant you become. They trusted on what they made with their hands. Today, some people are still like that. They trust what they can do for themselves not what God can do for them or through them. Even if you are the richest man on earth and you do not know God, you will have no peace because money or whatever cannot give peace. The peace giver is God that is why the scripture says that ”Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you” – John 14 : 27a.
So they took the bull which was given them and they prepared it and called on the name of Baal from morning even till noon, saying O Baal, hear us! But there was no voice; no one answered. Then they leaped about the altar which they had made. And so it was, at noon that Elijah mocked them and said, cry aloud, for he is a god; either he s meditating, or he is busy or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is sleeping and must be awakened. So they cried aloud and cut themselves, as was their custom, with knives and lances, until the blood gushed out on them. And when midday was past, they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice. But there was no voice; no one answered, no one paid attenion – 1 Kings 18 : 26 – 29.
Before now, they did not know that their god (Baal) cannot hear neither can it speak. Thank God that we are serving a God that hear the call of His children. They were waisting time calling on a lifeless object and they keep on cutting themselves as their custom demands. Today many people are living what their custom says in more than two hundren ( 200) years ago. The true God has not and will never follow custom. Our blessing does not depend on custom.
We are serving a living God, a God that is not on a journey when His children are calling on Him, a God that will not leave His children nor forsake them. If you are calling on God and there is no response, examine yourself because our God is a living God and not a dead God. Every blessing that the children of God recieves, is always different because He is a soverign God who blesses His children as it pleases Him. I so much like the last sentence of verse 29 which says that, ”But there was no voice, no one answered, no one paid attention”.
Then Elijah said to all the people, come near to me. So all the people came near to him. And he repaired the altar of the Lord that was broken down. And Elijah took twelve stones according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of the Lord had come, saying, Israel shall be your name. Then with the stones he built an altar in the name of the Lord and he make a trench around the altar large enough to hold two seahs of seed. And he put the wood in order, cut the bull in pieces and laid it on the wood and said, fill four waterpots with water and pour it on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood – 1 Kings 18 : 30 – 33.
Elijah told them to stop since their god has failed them and so that they cannot continue to waist his time, and for them to stop cutting themselves. He told them to pour water on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood. He ordered them to pour it first time, second time and third time. The scripture said that the water ran all around the altar and also the trench was filled (1 Kings 18 : 34 – 35). Elijah told them to pour the water for them to see that the power of our God do not depend on the circumstances that is surrounding the burnt offering or any situation in our life but rather on what level of trust we have on Him, our obedience and love towards Him.
And it came to pass, at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near and said, Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known this day that You are God in Israel and I am Your servant and I have done all these things at Your word. Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that You are the Lord God and that You have turned their hearts back to You again – 1 Kings 18 : 36 – 37.
Elijah did not stress himself to pray as did the prophets of Baal because he knew that God will not abandon him. Elijah did not say, God look I am alone in the midst of this multitude, come and save me from their hand, he did not even tell God to send down fire from heaven because God is already aware of the whole situation. At times, when we are praying, we feel that God is not aware of our situation, He is. Elijah displayed obedience in his prayer which God is demanding from us today. He called God with trust because he knows that our God is not a disappointing God. That same God is still alive today and we will see His power if we are ready to declare His power like Elijah and allow Him to lead us and not we trying to lead Him.
No matter the quantity of water that was poured on the burnt sacrifice, the fire of God consumed everything. Those that thought that Elijah was a failure came to rejoice with him and give glory to God (1 Kings 18 : 38 – 39). The Lord said that the battle is not ours but His. We should allow God to take charge of any battle in our life while we celebrate the victory by entering into His rest.
At last, Elijah have the victory, control and the final say over the prophets of Baal. He commanded the prophets of Baal to be seized ( 1Kings 18 : 40). God is still ready today to bring our enemies under our feet if we are ready to obey His commands which was the bases of Elijah’s victory.
Father Lord, I thank You for the wisdom and understanding of Your word You have given me. Give me the courage to speak Your word when necessary and to face any challenge in my life no matter how great it might be so that I will come out victorious. Help me to obey Your command so that I will never be diverted from Your way in Jesus name.