Beyond Sunday

God's Broken Heroes: Elijah

September 27, 2023 King of Kings Church
God's Broken Heroes: Elijah
Beyond Sunday
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Beyond Sunday
God's Broken Heroes: Elijah
Sep 27, 2023
King of Kings Church

Elijah was confident as could be in his faith, until some missed expectations led to a devastating fall before God restored him. Caleb Haack joins Mike and Dan to unpack the major events from Elijah's life and examine what we can learn from them.

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Elijah was confident as could be in his faith, until some missed expectations led to a devastating fall before God restored him. Caleb Haack joins Mike and Dan to unpack the major events from Elijah's life and examine what we can learn from them.

Stay up to date by following us on your favorite social networks.

Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Have questions or comments? Email us at contact@kingofkings.org.

Thanks for listening!

Speaker 1:

Hey there, king and Kings, welcome into another episode of Beyond Sunday Sermons. This is the podcast series where we take a message that we heard on a Sunday and just break it down a little bit further, get a little bit more granular, learn a little bit more about the subject or the character that we're studying. And I'm pretty excited we get a new voice on the podcast today. That would be Caleb Hack. He is our director of kids men and he is definitely the foremost Lego efficient in Ottawa and staff. Caleb, thanks for joining us today.

Speaker 2:

Thanks, I'm not sure. If that's true, I think Owen might be up there. I don't know, man.

Speaker 1:

Oh, Owen does deserve quite a lot of credit. He normally produces this show and does a fantastic job, but you get some pretty good Lego chops yeah.

Speaker 3:

And you taught me the plural of Lego is Lego. Lego.

Speaker 1:

Legos doesn't exist, Anyway, oh yeah.

Speaker 3:

I learned that, so thank you for that.

Speaker 1:

If you say Legos around the wrong people, they'll come down.

Speaker 2:

There's a, there's a lot out there, but come after you.

Speaker 1:

Now other voice, or other person over there, whether you're watching or listening, that is Mike White, the director of ministry here at King Kings and, along with myself, probably the only person at this church who is personally invested in the development of Sam Elinger.

Speaker 3:

Sam Elinger and one and a half listeners know who that is.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so actually I'd probably take the under on that under maybe just one.

Speaker 3:

He's a court.

Speaker 1:

X Texas court back Yep. Now third stringer, on the Colts Colts. There's information you didn't need. Here's information you do need.

Speaker 1:

We're going to be going into the series God's Broken Heroes, which is a series where we examined three or no four people in the Bible and kind of looked at just how, like, how messed up they were yes, god, like we kind of view them as heroes, almost people that you look at in the Bible and you read about and you'd be like, oh man, I want to be like that guy. I want to have that faith, I want to be able to do what that person did. I want to have the prayer life that person did.

Speaker 1:

But when you actually dive into who these people were and the things they did, they there's some pretty bad people in the Bible, but what's really cool about it is God forgives those people. He still loves those people and he's still empowers those people to do amazing things, which just gives us confidence because we're like well, he can love a guy like Jonah and use him to save thousands of people. I can do great things with my life too. So today we're going to be looking at Elijah. He is someone, I would argue, and we talked about this a little bit in our pre show meeting. I would argue no biblical character has the swag that Elijah did.

Speaker 2:

What do you guys think? Yeah, he's definitely. He knows what he's doing and he's not afraid to do it. I would put it that way he's. He's got a lot of swag.

Speaker 3:

Boldness, yeah, he steps out big in faith and he says he's got to do great things. But, like you said, it's a pretty big fall we see in his life and kind of gives up his calling. We'll get there in a little bit, I know.

Speaker 1:

Yes, so let's. Let's just start off with a quick backstory. We're going to start in first Kings 17. That's kind of where Elijah's the meat of Elijah's story is found. So Elijah was a prophet during the reign of King Ahab Now King Ahab not a good dude. The Bible says that Ahab was, or he did, more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him. Not a great guy not a great accomplishment?

Speaker 1:

No. So Elijah comes and tells him that, because of his wickedness, that God is going to withhold rain from the land and there will be neither rain nor dew in the next few years, except at Elijah's word, big deal. No rain means no crops. So you're talking major drought. This is, I mean, for a couple of years. That's pretty bad. So after a time God tells Ahab to go, or God tells Elijah excuse me, to go, present himself to Ahab and then he will send rain to the land.

Speaker 1:

So I'm going to pick it up in first Kings 18, verse 18 and 19. I have not made trouble for Israel, elijah replied, but you and your family's family have. You have abandoned the Lord's commands and have followed the Ba'al's Now some of the people from all over Israel to meet me on Mount Carmel and bring the 450 prophets of Ba'al and the 400 or 400 prophets of Asherah who eat at Jezebel's table. So what we're setting up here is a major confrontation between Ba'al, who it's commonly referred to as Ba'al. But, mike, I think you got the correct pronunciation on that we think.

Speaker 3:

Ba'al, ba'al, we are minds with that.

Speaker 2:

Yes, I don't know. Someone else taught me that.

Speaker 1:

It was always Baal.

Speaker 3:

Baal. I said Baal, growing up, let's go, ba'al.

Speaker 1:

Ba'al, it sounds cooler. So we've got, on one hand, elijah and God and on the other hand, we've got all these prophets of these false gods and they're going to have this major showdown on Mount Carmel. This is like Elijah, just we touch on this a little bit, but he's got this boldness that we don't normally see in the Bible. I mean, Elijah not only withheld reign, or at least told the King that God was withholding the reign which is pretty bold in and of itself. That would obviously make the King very mad but he, like he comes at him and he calls him out right in his face. I mean, he's like the modern day Michael Jordan just spit in flame. What do you guys think gave him that boldness to just be so, maybe even flamboyant?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, can I add a little context?

Speaker 1:

Yes, absolutely.

Speaker 3:

So I think you're right. You see Ahab, who's really wicked, and then he marries Jezebel, who is a foreign woman, and she brings in these foreign religions which God had spoken against. Yes, and so King Ahab had officially endorsed these as the religions of the people, the Northern Kingdom, and there was conflict leading up to this, like they were hunting down prophets of God and they were killing them. And we'd seen Elijah see God come through in amazing ways, right Fed by ravens. You see what was it? Bread and oil kind of continue on for years. He raises a widow's son from the dead. So he's seen God's faithfulness. So that's the context I think building, where he has this boldness to proclaim to Ahab's face that what he's doing is wrong.

Speaker 1:

Essentially, I don't. Why did I do the back story? You're like the King of setting up, setting the scene.

Speaker 3:

I don't know about that.

Speaker 2:

So just let you run with it.

Speaker 1:

No no, no, we'll know that for future episodes. Sorry, Caleb, I didn't mean to no, no that's good?

Speaker 2:

I think definitely he. He's seen God do big things over and over and over, and so he's just constantly expecting God to do those big things. And I think that's what you talked about a lot in your message on this was the expectations that he has for God to move in a certain way and to do those big things and continue to do it, and I love this. I feel like this is like an iconic Old Testament Bible story. It's like the ultimate showdown of ultimate destiny. It's like everything's coming into place and like all these enemies of God versus like his top profit, basically right now.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, and so you see, in the King and Queens palace, these prophets of Baal and Asher are at their table. So it's it's close relationship. They're the official religion of the area and the land and they're putting the people of God, they're breaking the covenant with the God of Israel before them and that's what Elijah is not having anything to do with. So he's fired up. He has this history of God moving in incredible ways and he has anticipation that it's going to happen again.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, what do you guys think that faith looks like in a modern day application? To just be, to be that bold, to have that great of just a, just a. You just know that God is going to come through for you, mm hmm.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think of like like missionaries that go out into the mission field. It's good, Um people who, like are willing to leave everything behind to follow God to go do what he says. Um, you know, we get missionaries that come here, we send missionaries out. But, like I grew up around a lot of like mission teams, I did mission trips myself, you know, with groups, and it takes a lot of faith to be able to like step out and and preach the world with the word of God, you know. So for him to be able to do that I feel like that's kind of how I relate it today is like these people that are just champions of the faith that go out and tell people about it.

Speaker 3:

You know, I wonder in our Western culture if we're too comfortable in our faith, like I don't. I don't know if I can relate to this kind of bold faith. You know, missionaries I think of the Middle East, where Christians lives are on the line constantly in Asia I mean China's that way too Underground church, so I don't know where they're it. Something's really at stake where I don't think we face that. Maybe there's a little like social persecution that we face, maybe, maybe. But even I think we're still a Christianized country in some sense.

Speaker 2:

Maybe there's. We like to be comfortable 100% and we like to be in our box. We have our groups, that we're, we hang out with our friends, our people and stepping outside of that and he's basically alone. Elijah, like all these other prophets, have been persecuted, hidden away in caves. They're gone. He's out here doing this by himself, essentially, and and for us like that would be extremely uncomfortable yeah.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's the reason I asked that question is because I was thinking about this and I struggled to come up with like what, what that looks like in America to have this level of boldness, and there probably are some applications of it, but the level of persecution we just don't really see or experience. But I like your comparison, caleb, of of going out to other countries and being a missionary, and especially in ones where, if you know, you can be arrested, you can be tortured, you can be killed, like that's. That's really putting it on the line and I think Elijah is a prophet who would have been willing to do that when we see it right here. So let's, let's get back into the event here.

Speaker 1:

So Elijah puts this challenge out there, he congregates on Mount Carmel and Elijah kind of he lays down the law here in first Kings 1822. He says I am the only one of the Lord's prophets left, but Baal has 450 prophets. Get two bowls for us. Let Baal's prophets choose one for themselves. Let them cut it into pieces and put it on the wood, but not set fire to it. I will prepare the other bowl and put it on the wood, but not set fire to it. When you call on the name of your God and I will call on the name of the Lord, the God who answers by fire. He is God. And then all the people said what you say is good. So there's just challenge of whose God is going to respond first.

Speaker 1:

And, of course, baal's prophets fail because false gods tend to do nothing. So they do nothing and Elijah, just, savage, taunts them. So to be clear, these other prophets, they're dancing around, they're so desperate that they're cutting themselves with swords and stones, like putting their lives on the line. And as they're doing this, eliza says shout louder. Surely he's a God. Perhaps he's deep in thought, or busy or traveling, maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened. And he continues.

Speaker 1:

It doesn't have it in this version, but he makes bathroom jokes and says, hey, maybe he's relieving himself in other translations, so yeah, that's.

Speaker 3:

That's the busy. Kind of deep in thought I think some of that. But yeah, that's the thing.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, elijah just comes after him and then eventually he, you know, until evening, so like hours have passed. And then Elijah calls upon God Well, actually, he ups the ante and, like, covers his altar and water which makes it even more difficult then calls upon God. God sets it on fire. God is clearly the winner. Caleb, you mentioned that this is kind of one of those really well known events. It's like this epic showdown. When you think of this event, what is the first thing that pops to the front of your mind? Oh man.

Speaker 2:

I think of. Well, first, probably God's power that gets shown through Elijah right away in this. And then I think something that stood out to me, you know, recently reading through it, was when it's talking about this, this God or the gods of the balls, you know, they're not responding and basically it says, as midday past there was no voice, no one answered, no one paid attention, so literally no one. There's like nothing, it's just crickets. And that's what stands out to me is the silence that comes with that and I think that pops up again later with silence and quiet, the still small voice which I, you know it was a connection I kind of made so pretty neat to see. Like God's power completely outdo everything. And it's Elijah versus how many people? Like 450, is that right? Like a huge number of people? Like, you know, underdog story of the year. Yeah.

Speaker 3:

And just such a demonstrable event right there, like God has to show up or how does he look. You know what I mean. So it's pretty bold. I think I was just reflecting on. I wonder what Elijah's prayer life was like. I wonder how much of this he knew. Like there's some moments before in the chapters where it's the Lord came to Elijah and I don't know if it was super clear here was he shooting from the hip. I mean, he's pretty bold. What's going on in the situation? I really wonder his prayer life and what God was speaking to him.

Speaker 2:

Well, I think too about like, just what is the role of, like a prophet. You know, basically they are the ones who are the voice of God to the people. So he's got to be like, just in constant communication with God and he you know how much of that is him asking God to do something versus God saying I'm going to do this.

Speaker 1:

So I agree, what I find just so fascinating and I know I keep going back to this, but just the audacity and the swagger that he has is so I mean we kind of talked about it pretty show like maybe David, you could put him on that level. But other than that, we just we don't see it in the Bible. Like so many people in this book are more known for their humility or kind of their, their quietness or their meekness than they are for bravado, and I mean and we see the Bible multiple times expound on the virtues of humility First Peter, five, five is one of the most well known. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for God opposes, opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.

Speaker 1:

And Elijah is just talking trash all over the place. He's making fun of profits, he's making fun of the king and the queen. Is there any like? I think there's a little bit of a disconnect for me there and that I would feel like maybe God at some point would be like hey, dude, there's a different way to do this, turn it down a little bit, but clearly he doesn't and he supports Elijah. Like, what do you guys make of that?

Speaker 2:

I think that verse from 1 Peter is interesting, and when I think of Elijah I kind of think of Peter too a little bit. Maybe they're similar a little bit in some of that boldness. And so when it comes down to it, I think he has to learn a lesson about this, and I think he does with what happens, kind of after this whole incident. So it's really interesting to hear about how he does this whole big thing and then kind of goes off and his mindset really changes. And when we were talking before, you know, I was thinking more about like his confidence. Like how much of that is just pure bravado? Like he's just putting on a front. Is he just saying like I know, this is who God is, like I expect he's going to do this, when internally is there something else going on and that's you know. That's what I wonder when I read through this. And after all of these miracles he sees, he kind of like, you know, he has his really highs and really low lows that happen.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, David came to mind.

Speaker 3:

Samson also has a bravado where he I think his was more unhealthy bravado, but what you said resonate with me where it's? There's probably a fine line between pride and confidence and he seems to really have confidence in the Lord in this moment. If you look after the waters dumped the third time his prayer. He says oh Lord, god of Abraham, isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God and Israel, that I am your servant. So I don't know, I think he's still putting the Lord at the center of everything and not himself. Russ Samson probably got a little bit off there and put himself at the center sometimes. So he, I think he's confident in the Lord, maybe not arrogant pride, but that line's pretty close.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think you make a really good point. I mean someone who's extremely prideful isn't calling himself servant.

Speaker 3:

It's about me, yes.

Speaker 1:

He recognizes where that power is coming from and he's going to let other people know about it. But I guess it works and a lot of people come to God because of it, which is awesome. Here's where things flip, in that Jezebel is Ahab's wife, very wicked woman, Like you said, Mike. She's from an outside tribe. She's brought all these false gods and these different ways of living into Israel and she tells Elijah May the gods deal with me, be ever so severe severely if by this time tomorrow I do not make your life like that of one of the dead prophets of Baal.

Speaker 1:

And we've seen so much confidence just unshakable in Elijah to this point. And now he bails, he runs away, has a day's journey into the wilderness, lies down under a brush and begs God to take his life. And it's just like where did this come from? We've got this guy who just has more confidence than almost anyone that we see in this book and all of a sudden it's just gone. And Mike you talked about previously like death threats were nothing new to him. This was something that he'd experienced and encountered previously. It's not like a death threat is something that he's unfamiliar with, but this one shakes him to the core. What do you guys think happened here?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I mean, I think, back up to touch. So you see, the fire come down. Sacrifices there, they get the prophets of Baal, put them to death, and then rain comes. There was the drought for two to three years. Rain comes and he tells Ahab, get out of here and go back to Jezreel, essentially, and then he sets the record for the fastest marathon ever, right, and he runs ahead of him to Jezreel. That's the capital, that's where King and Queen lived. And again, in my message I just went the whole route of expectations. So here's a sacrifice. Everyone sees this. There's a huge moment of repentance. King, queen are going to turn, everyone's going to come into the Lord. And it's not what happened. They rebelled, they doubled down on the death sentence.

Speaker 2:

So he's expecting, and King Ahab he's kind of seems like a wishy-washy kind of guy.

Speaker 3:

He totally does. It's kind of paper ping and she's running the show. She's running the show.

Speaker 2:

Jezrebel, and so he's probably expecting okay, like I just defeated all of their prophets and Ahab's kind of like oh yeah, rain's coming. Your Lord's powerful, like there's something there. He probably is expecting them to completely repent, turn back to God, the whole nation because of what God did through him, maybe even thinking like I did this at this point. I don't know, but he's thinking something's going to change with what's happening and it doesn't. So that expectation that he had wasn't met. So that probably shakes his confidence. I would think.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, and you wonder again how much did Elijah put his identity as a prophet and his performance.

Speaker 2:

I mean, we can Right.

Speaker 3:

And so he was in the form he played his part and then didn't get the result he wanted to. And so, yeah, then he goes 25 miles, then he goes 100 miles south, he fires a servant. So I think in essence, he's quitting his job.

Speaker 2:

He basically gets depressed because he's like he goes into a cave is like I just want to sleep.

Speaker 2:

I'm depressed, Like nothing worked out the way I thought it was going to, which is funny because it kind of did work out the way he wanted it to anyway. And so then he's in this cave and basically he's going through the motions, just kind of like I don't even want to be alive anymore, honestly, and I love you know. He basically takes a nap and God provides some food for him and that helps him get back on track. So, and then it's so interesting how God appears to him there too, because he's again expecting God to appear in big ways, you know, and there's an earthquake, there's fire, and then God doesn't appear in those. He appears in the small way. You know, with that, that's still small voice at the end.

Speaker 1:

So Interesting, caleb, you had an interesting perspective talking about this. You know we were talking about these mixed expectations and We've talked a lot about you know how Elijah has this unshakable confidence but it but it can be shaken. And you talked about how you know we we have Celebrity, celebrity pastors or preachers today and we've seen a lot of them fall and, you know, have big mistakes. Some have gotten canceled and and you kind of see, for all this outward confidence they have, they're broken men on the inside. Obviously we all are. But can you kind of flesh out like, yeah, what made your mind go there?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I, I mean I always try to find like how I can relate to these people and and when I look at Elijah and the course of his life, he sees these miracles happen, he has these high moments and then it seems like after each one he kind of just has a really low moment, a period where it goes down, like that. So in my own life, like sometimes I struggle with confidence a little bit and I project that to people and then inside I'm like questioning myself or like what am I doing? Like I don't know what I'm doing, like how did I get here? Like you know, I don't know.

Speaker 2:

I don't want to get too philosophical, it's a little bit easy to do that, but basically like I see him as this person, like he does all these things and he does all the right things. He follows God's commands, he's the number one prophet, at the top of his game. And then you look at like I mean really kind of that celebrity preacher atmosphere too, and I can see that in some of that as well, where it's like, okay, this guy's been, you know, at the top of his game, everybody's listening to him, he's got the best podcast ever.

Speaker 2:

I don't know, ours is probably better, but and then something happens, you know, and it's like that fall from grace, which I don't know if that's necessarily where it goes for Elijah, but he does have this like low, low moment when if somebody saw him at this point they might be like why aren't you trusting God anymore, man? Like, like what happened? I don't know.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I resonate with that too. I think you wonder if his identity was in his performance and he noticed the language he shifts. Even in 1822 says I'm the only one of the Lord's prophets left, and he goes to Mount Horab or Mount Sinai. He says it to God multiple times like I'm the only one, I'm the only one. So then his, his focus was so much on God and what God was doing, and then it shifts for some reason onto Himself and his performance. I'm zealous for the Lord. I did this. I.

Speaker 2:

I don't know. And that's a really good point too, because and and I think God recognizes that that attitude in him, like where he thinks I'm alone, like and he's always felt like he's alone and he thinks he has to do it all on his own. So God sends who's next Elisha, right, right. So he kind of provides that person that's gonna support, support and be there for him and take on the ministry after him too.

Speaker 3:

So yeah, so more running. He goes Jezreel hundred miles, beer sheba Maybe about 300 miles to Mount Horab or also Mount Sinai, which is where Moses gave 10 commandments. So I think I don't know if God told him to go, we don't know if he just left or what, but this was where God speaks to his people. So I think Elijah was going there to meet God.

Speaker 1:

Need to get this guy on the King Kings track team.

Speaker 3:

Just a stud man. He had to be so ripped up and just cardio.

Speaker 2:

Centric is a man ultra thaw and runner. We don't know how long it took him to run those distance.

Speaker 3:

We know 40 days to go, 300 miles, but yeah, the first 25.

Speaker 1:

I don't know, we'll see so I mean clearly I shouldn't say clearly, we don't know this for sure, but it seems like he's reacting and that he expected a certain thing to happen that didn't happen, and it's like okay, god, you didn't hold up your end of the bargain, I'm out of here. I'm not doing this profit thing anymore to find somebody else. Have you guys, both as Employees of a church, but also just as men, in your lives, have you ever had a feeling similar to that? I mean, obviously not on this scale, but just like man, god, I'm working for you, I'm trying to do things for you and I'm still. I'm in a valley right now. What's going on? Like I need you, like I'm doing my thing for you. I need something back from you.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, so I worked with the student ministry for a number of years. It's a very humbling role Cause you feel like students. It's like one step forward, two steps back and you're constantly like what am I doing here? Why am I investing time when they clearly don't care to be here, don't want to listen to me? So, yeah, there were frequent feelings of that where you just think what am I doing here? But that's the tricky thing of ministry is becoming me centric and seeing my performance and my ability, versus seeing God and trusting that he's working, the spirit of God's moving. But yeah, I resonate with that feeling totally.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think I relate to it on the level of, like just life change. You know, I mean I'm fairly new still here at King of Kings, eight months now. And then you know, we had a new baby and, like I'm a planner, so I like want to know how everything's going to work out, how it's all going to go and everything that happened, like, especially around the time of interviewing for this job, we were moving into a new apartment and we had some other family things going on. And then, you know, when we had our baby, even like it didn't go at all- according to plan.

Speaker 2:

So, to put it mildly, yes, the expectations that we had were one thing. And then it was totally different. And we'd been praying about it. We'd been, you know, talking to each other, we'd been talking to other people, like having this whole kind of faith background to what we wanted to do, of starting our family and everything. And then, when that all kind of went out the window, it was like what are we doing? How is this happening? And then you know you have to get through that period where you just go through the things and then it's suddenly like, okay, I do see how God didn't do it the way I wanted, but it worked out in the end and there were miracles that happened and things along the way.

Speaker 3:

So yeah, I'll speak for me personally, but I would think most people have a root of control. But we want the outcome. We control it. Planning is great, but it can be unhealthy and it controlling it? I can be that way too. And if God doesn't act like we think he should, then it's like where were you? I put my time in and did my part. Why didn't you do yours? And then sometimes it's years later. You're like I get it now, like you were working. It was just different. And I think that's what Elijah sees and that's what God speaks to him on the mountain.

Speaker 2:

I think it can be really easy sometimes in our culture to almost view God as like a genie, 100%. And you're like, okay, I'm gonna ask you, you're gonna provide for me. I get three wishes or however many. You think my prayers are like that and that's not how God works. He's not gonna give us everything we want. He's gonna give us what we need, and that's gonna be different from what we expect or what we want.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I know, in my mid-20s I had a huge wrestling in my faith because I was struggling to find my wife, like I.

Speaker 3:

this is not a correct expectation now, but my let's hear it, man, I can't wait for this one.

Speaker 1:

No, no, my parents were like middle school sweethearts Got married, I think, when they were 21 and 18, or maybe it was even 20 and 18 respectively. So growing up like that was my expectation. Like you get married in your mid-20s, you start having kids mid to late 20s and by your 30s you got like, family established, you're off and running. So when I'm like 26, 27 years old, I really devoted my life to Christ in a way that I never had before and I was involved in church and everywhere. I was in small groups, I was serving, I was just doing all kinds of stuff and I think I didn't do it because I was hoping that God would help me find my person. But I had this expectation Like I'm a Christian dude, I'm out here doing this, like I really wanna meet this person, I'm ready. And that wasn't how it worked, god.

Speaker 1:

I didn't get to meet Sarah until a couple of years later and we've been married for almost five years now and it's kind of like you said, caleb, I can look back now and see they're in the mid-20s. I was still very immature and I was not ready to meet Sarah. I don't know if Sarah would have liked the mid-20s version of me. She probably wouldn't have wanted to marry me, much less date me. But in that moment it was just like God, I'm trying to do so much for you, I'm trying to be the man, the Christian that you want me to be, and I'm getting nothing from you and, of course, I'm getting a lot from you. I'm extremely blessed. But in that moment it just felt like I need you to give me something, and I think that's kind of what Elijah was feeling here.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I'd agree. It's easy to overlook the blessings, like the rain or the food, the things that he had. Just God provided for him.

Speaker 1:

And the ability to run incredible distances in short amounts of time.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I agree. Thank you for those quads. Okay, so you mentioned, mike, that Elijah he ends up at Horrib, which is the mountain of God, and God comes to him and twice he says to Elijah what are you doing here, elijah? And I find that so interesting because God obviously knows what he's doing, but he's trying to get Elijah to think about his position in life. What do you guys think God was hoping Elijah's response would be? Or what do you think he was trying to elicit there?

Speaker 3:

I think honesty, brokenness he got some of that but also realizing who God was. I think you see Jesus in the New Testament ask questions what do you want me to do? What do you want? So I don't know. I think it's just I'm going to set the table and allow that person to kind of speak. I think he gives it to him twice to then reorient his perspective. And Elijah's just so locked into his pity party he can't see what God's doing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, he says I mean, God asks what are you doing here? He says I've been very jealous for the Lord, the God the people of Israel have forsaken. He goes into I'm the only one left. Again, god gives him his next mission. Basically, and I think God's teaching him you need to continue on. It doesn't just end because it didn't go the way you wanted. Like, my mission is still my mission and I'm still wanting you to go and bring my news to the people. So I think that's important.

Speaker 3:

And then I think you see God's demonstration of power. I think in my sermon that I talked about, god had spoken this way before to Moses and to Job, and there's one more I can't put my finger on right now, but he'd come in power before and fire an earthquake wind, that kind of stuff earth, wind and fire. But then I don't think that's what Elijah needed in that moment. He had gentleness, closeness, whisper, kind of thing. And that's when you see Elijah come out and then God repeats his question and Elijah is just so locked in to himself he can't see who God is in that moment, and that's when God reveals. I've had a plan the whole time, like calm down, trust in me. I have this plan, we're gonna keep going and you're my dude still.

Speaker 1:

And I love that he reveals. I've reserved 7,000 for you in Israel, all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and whose mouths have not kissed him. So we've heard Elijah say multiple times I'm the only one, I'm the only one, I'm the only one. I'm on this island alone. No, there's a ton of people and God has had them in reserve this whole time. He's had this plan, but he doesn't reveal it all to Elijah because he wants to see that faith from him. I think, do you guys get that same read?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I think. So I wonder here if he's talking 7,000 prophets or just people. That's hard.

Speaker 1:

I think either way it's back he's still a prophet.

Speaker 3:

But yeah, I think you're right, I think these people have not bowed. And then even Haseil was a wicked foreign king. So God's even using foreign powers I think there's a military general in there he's using so God's? He's like I'm still working, elijah, like trust me, I've got things going. You don't even see right now.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, definitely. He's trying to remind Elijah he's not alone.

Speaker 1:

So, Mike, you mentioned it a little bit, but I want to dive in a little bit more, as Elijah is having this pity party, it says. Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. And that is when Elijah heard the whisper, pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. So we see these great, powerful demonstrations from God, but it's when he whispers that Elijah actually responds. What do you guys take away from that? Why do you think that was how God chose to speak to Elijah?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, again, I think it's. He's already seen these powerful miracles. That's not what he needed in that moment. He saw the stop of the rain there was no rain. He saw people raised from the dead. He saw the miracles with the food that was provided to the widow or the widow provided to him, and then, of course, the big destruction of the gods right and the prophets. And then all these big things is where he's expecting and looking for God, and God says I'm just in your heart, I'm just, you know a whisper in your ear, I'm right there with you. It doesn't have to be a you know a big thing.

Speaker 3:

So yeah, I think the Hebrew for gentle whisper. It's almost inaudible, so maybe it wasn't even heard, but, like you said, kind of in his spirit and Elijah knew the voice of the Lord. But I think in my message I talked about it's like having kids, which you'll see as Olivia gets old and you guys, how sinful she is. But when your kids are ramped up and like you don't want to meet them, power with power, like that just doesn't go where it go well, and I think Elijah was just in such a broken spot. So power God was not necessarily what he needed the gentleness, the peace, the grace, and that's how God came and spoke in that moment.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think I mean even thinking relating that to like a baby, like God chose to send Jesus as a baby Like the most, I mean basically just the most vulnerable thing.

Speaker 3:

You can think of vulnerable as a way to do it.

Speaker 2:

I mean, like the most, you know, inexplicable way you could. You could choose to save your people. That's what God does, and he wants to make it known that his power is great and weakness so now I want to.

Speaker 1:

There are more things that happen, but I want to get back to Elijah's next conversation with Ahab. So we see him at the beginning. He comes in and he he lets Ahab have it. Then they have the big showdown on Mount Carmel and he tells Ahab go home. And then races him home and beats him and then gets terrified, runs away. And now we see him come back to Ahab again.

Speaker 1:

Ahab says to Elijah so you have found me, my enemy. This is in First Kings 20. And Elijah says I have found you because you have sold yourself to do evil in the eyes of the Lord. He says I'm going to bring disaster on you. I'll wipe out your descendants and cut off from Ahab every last male in Israel, slave or free. I'll make your house like that of Jeroboam, son of Nibbat, and that of Bashar, son of Ahija, because you have aroused my anger and have caused Israel to sin. And also concerning Jezebel, that's his wife, again the Lord says dogs will devour Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel, dogs will eat those belonging to Ahab who die in the city and the birds will feed on those who die in the country.

Speaker 3:

Classic kids Bible story right there.

Speaker 1:

We see that, oh my moly, I mean, can you imagine going to the king and saying these things like our dude's got his boldness back.

Speaker 2:

It's, yeah, it's back.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, he's reinstated, he's stepped back into his mission as a prophet and you're seeing that boldness and confidence in the Lord. So he's back on mission.

Speaker 1:

I think that there are times in our lives where we're both versions of Elijah. There's these cocky times of maybe not cocky, but just these times of great faith and great confidence, and times where we're just throwing a pity party and it's just like God, you're doing nothing for me when he's working all around us. What comfort does it give you, guys, that God shows Elijah grace in both of those instances?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, cause we fall short and need grace. To me. That's where the whole series God's broken heroes is. We're seeing people in scripture that relate to us and say, yep, I can relate to that. Yep, I fall short, I doubt I fall away, I sin, I struggle and God's still saying come on, we're still going on this mission.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it's. It's definitely a testament to who God is and how he's the same. He doesn't change. He does big things, he does little things and he's still the same God and we can rely on trust on him in those big moments and also in our weakness.

Speaker 1:

As we wrap up here, any last takeaways, gentlemen.

Speaker 3:

No, I was just flipping to second Kings two, where then Elijah is taken to heaven. He and Enoch are two that didn't taste death we think so pretty, wow, but amazing life and legacy. And then you see his ministry continue in Elisha and God keeps writing his story through broken heroes.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, he's. He's known to the Israelites, is basically the greatest prophet of all time. They're waiting for Elijah to return, even when Jesus comes back and Jesus takes his place and continues the work of steering us toward grace.

Speaker 3:

Right, and then you see a amount of transfiguration. Moses, elijah Jesus law, the prophets, Jesus there fulfilling it all Pretty cool.

Speaker 1:

Really cool to see Elijah kind of come full circle. Well, thank you, gentlemen, for joining us on this podcast today. Always fun to kind of break down another character in the Bible, see both their flaws and their triumphs through God. And thank you, king and Kings family, let's keep living our faith lives beyond Sunday.

Exploring God's Broken Heroes
Elijah's Confidence and Struggles
Struggling With Expectations and Trusting God
The Legacy of Elijah