1 Kings 18:23-24 “Let them therefore give us two bullocks; and let them choose one bullock for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: and I will dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.”
Marvel comics has made millions and millions of dollars, making the fantasy come alive on the cinematic screen. The superheroes of today have superpowers that can save humanity from evil, or even itself.
Because of the sales, marketing, and promotion of these movies, our young ones think themselves to have superpowers like having laser eyes, the ability to freeze you in your tracks or stop a building from crushing you. They have Captain America’s shield, Superman’s cape, or Hulk’s green hands and believe they can do what their heroes can do.
The children of today have lost the ability to dream, to create, to imagine, and to draw out from within themselves the real gifts and talents the Lord has given them to grow and use for His glory one day. Hollywood has provided its substitute – a false god if you will.
Elijah stood up against the false gods of Israel to challenge them, and to put their gods to the test. You see, Elijah knew that His God was real. He knew that God wasn’t going to stand for His people serving the false gods of this world.
Under the leadership and guidance of the Holy Spirit, I believe that Elijah gave the challenge to the king and to all the people of Israel to stop the apostasy and devil worship among God’s people.
The challenge was to be public so there would be no doubt that whatever happened, and however it came about, it would silence the enemy, and be a visual reminder who was the real God.
Often, we are a dismal failure to be the salt and light in this world because we don’t believe we serve the God of the impossible. We are put in situations and circumstances that would allow our dependence upon God to bring about a miraculous end; yet, we fail to even try for lack of faith.
The reasons for our failure are as varied as the excuses we use not to serve God.
There are missionary families that have served God through generations – why is that?
I believe it is because each parent made a public display of their faith to their children. Their dependence on God and His answer to their prayers showed the next generation that God IS real, and He DOES answer prayer.
I don’t need a special shield to protect me, I have been given one by God to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. (Ephesians 6:16).
Often, we fail because of fear.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego were called out for serving God instead of bowing to the image the king presented to be worshipped. In his anger, the king commanded the furnace to heated seven times more than it was normal to be heated and for them to be thrown in.
Their answer to the king when he gave them one last chance to recant reveals their faith.
Daniel 3:16-18 “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.”
“But if not…” The submission to God’s will in this instance proves that they were not going to bow; whether God would deliver them or not. They had wholly given themselves over to serve – unto death.
If God’s people could capture that spirit of boldness and faith, we could shake this world for Christ. If we would read, meditate, memorize, witness, and pray with the confidence in our God that He could do what He said He would do, we could testify of the miraculous answers to prayer, the winning of a soul to Christ, and the faithfulness of a God who wants to show us great and mighty things we know not.
Jeremiah 33:3 “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.”
Isaiah 45:11 “Thus saith the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask me of things to come concerning my sons, and concerning the work of my hands command ye me.”
The testimony of answered prayer begets the desire to want it for ourselves. May we who name the name of Jesus Christ, be bold in our witness for Jesus Christ. To tell others of how we prayed and how God answered. We’ve been given access to do so – we just need to do our part – God will take care of the rest.