As you read through these 2 chapters it just feels like one catastrophically bad king followed another each of them failing to learn from his predecessors and getting progressively worse. 1 Kings 16:30 even tells us that King Ahab actively did worse things than any of those who came before him. Their disobedience was deliberate to the point of being wilful.
But then we come to chapter 17 and there’s a real sense that God was about to do something extraordinary through the prophet Elijah. It begins with just a word of prophecy and he’s whisked off to a safe place to be fed by ravens until the time was right for God to show his power. We’ll see over the next few days how that all works out but we are given a wonderful snapshot view of the things that are about to unfold.
Elijah was sent to the Widow at Zarephath where the miracles began. First it was prophetic words (v.12) then the multiplication of food followed by the raising of her son from the dead. There is such a foreshadowing of Jesus in these passages that it makes me want to jump up and down shouting, “Look, He’s coming!” But I’m far too reserved for that!
For Elijah it must have been both terrifying and wonderfully powerful. He was seeing God working first hand through him. It must have made him wonder what else could God do through him? God spoke and the rain stopped, He spoke again and he was fed by birds, once again and food was multiplied and He spoke again and life was breathed into a dead boy.
This is the God who has power and dominion over not just life and death but over all of creation. This is the God who we should be worshipping unreservedly. (Back to my jumping up and down shouting, “He’s coming!”) This God is our God. This God is the God who can and still does do all these things. This God is the same God who gave His son Jesus to be a sacrifice for us so that no matter what sins we’ve committed and no matter how far we’ve strayed from Him He will accept back those who have repented. This is the God of love and grace, the God of mercy and peace.
Heavenly Father, thank you that you love us so much that you sent Jesus to die for us. Help each of us to follow you with all of our hearts, minds and strength and help us through your Holy Spirit to be people of repentance so that we might walk always with you. Amen.