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
Elijah Returns to Ahab
Elijah reappears: 18:1-15. Elijah now returns to Israel. He meets a Obadiah, a devout believer who is one of Ahab’s administrators. This man’s fear and the fact that he has been forced to hide a number of prophets because Jezebel “was killing off the prophets of the Lord,” gives us some insight into the fierce battle between religious faiths going on at that time, and the persecution of true believers.
3 And Ahab had called Obadiah, who was in charge of his house. (Now Obadiah feared the Lord greatly. 4 For so it was, while Jezebel massacred the prophets of the Lord, that Obadiah had taken one hundred prophets and hidden them, fifty to a cave, and had fed them with bread and water.)
17 Then it happened, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him, “Is that you, O troubler of Israel?” 18 And he answered, “I have not troubled Israel, but you and your father’s house have, in that you have forsaken the commandments of the Lord and have followed the Baals.
On Mount Carmel: 18:16-46. Elijah confronts Ahab and the people of Israel. The people must choose whom they
will worship. In a contest held on Mount Carmel, the 450 prophets of Baal call on their impotent god all day. When Elijah prays, fire falls from heaven to consume a water-soaked sacrifice. The people kill the prophets of Baal, and a great rain comes to break the drought. The OT law calls for the execution of false prophets.
21 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. 22 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.
26 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.
38 Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench…. 45 Now it happened in the meantime that the sky became black with clouds and wind, and there was a heavy rain. So Ahab rode away and went to Jezreel.
Archaeologists have located wells below Mount Carmel which do not go dry, even in droughts.
–> Being a true believer is a lonely position. It’s easy to be discouraged in the midst of “Christians” who want to make nice with everybody. True believers today are a small minority. Now many Christian churches offer “conflict resolution” class as part of their “together/coexistence” movement a.k.a. ecumenical movement that will herd people to the ultimate destination of a one world religion. Only Christian faith will be excluded and persecuted.
It’s a decision time indeed! Let’s remember what happened in this chapter. Let’s not forget who is on our side.
22 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.