And Then This Happens . . .

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1 Kings 18:36–37 (NIV)

At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: “Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you, Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.”

CONSIDER THIS

Time for a quick recap:

The prophets of Baal are weary. After a day of old time religion they are worn out; even bleeding. Lots of smoke from all their activity, but no fire. Now Elijah kneels before us; checking the now-repaired altar with its twelve stones built together. On the altar is the cut up carcass of a water-soaked bull on top of a waterlogged pyre of wood. Not only will we need fire, but we will need the kind of fire that can burn an unburnable sacrifice. Then this happens:

At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: “Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you, Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.”

Notice the pattern. He rehearses the pattern of true worship: You have revealed yourself to me and I have responded. Elijah is not asking God to validate him. He is not asking God to vindicate himself in response to Elijah’s actions. No, Elijah simply asks for God to reveal himself. 

And then this happens:

Then the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench. (1 Kings 18:38)

Let’s go back and read that sentence again, very slowly. Let it sink in. 

Then the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench.

And then this happens:

When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, “The Lord—he is God! The Lord—he is God!” (1 Kings 18:39)

This is a picture of what revealed glory looks like and the response of transcendent faith. It invokes, evokes, and even provokes an almost involuntary responsiveness of the soul. It cannot be manufactured. This does not come in response to human activity. It cannot be taught or trained or in any way formulized. 

In fact, some of you are compelled even now to respond to the revelation on Mt. Carmel in similar fashion. That’s the thing about revelation. It always leads to response. And response, leads to transformation. 

Consider this your invitation to respond now. 

This is the way—from glory to glory. 

THE PRAYER

Abba Father, we marvel at Elijah’s prayer and make it our own:

Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you, Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.

This is the prayer for awakening. And truthfully, we need you to begin with us. Would you turn our hearts back again? We know with every degree of turn there is another degree of glory—because the turning is back to you, beholding you. Slay all our religious activity and programming and strategic planning and clever ideas that try to get some kind of response from you. Turn our hearts back again to you. Transcend our reality with your revelation and make the turning of our hearts to you to be the response. We long for the hearts of a nation, indeed of the world, to cry out with the cry of Mt. Carmel, “The Lord, He is God! The Lord, He is God!” Praying in Jesus’ name, amen. 

THE QUESTION

Are you seeing the difference between human religious activity trying to generate God’s response (i.e. Baalism) vs. God’s transcendent revelation evoking human responsiveness? How does this script get flipped? 

For the Awakening,
J.D. Walt
Sower-in-Chief
seedbed.com

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Farmer. Poet. Theologian. Jurist. Publisher. Seedbed's Sower-in-Chief.

4 COMMENTS

  1. It is high time to repent of lame attempts to bring about revival through manipulative methodologies, which play on human emotions. Attractional ministries aimed at satisfying a consumeristic culture looking for the next spiritual high will continue to fail to bring about the expansion of the kingdom. Romans 12: 1 says it best: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God — this is your true and proper worship. I believe that if we do this in true humility, that Jesus will once again cast fire upon the earth (Luke 12:49). This holy fire will burn away our human dross and send tongues of fire to every land. God alone will be glorified. Kingdom outposts will be established.

  2. Lord, let it be known today that Jesus is risen and alive, present and powerfully active in the 21st century. Answer, Lord, so people will know that you are turning their hearts to Jesus and will stand in awe of Your majestic glory.

  3. Coming to understand the difference between transcendent faith and functional religion reminds what Jesus says in Mark 8:11-13. The Pharisees came to test Jesus and asked for a sign from heaven. This was Jesus’ response to their request: “Why does this generation ask for a miraculous sign? I tell you the truth, no sign will be given to it.”
    Before coming across this passage, I found myself asking God for a sign for this or for that, as a confirmation for what I was doing or needed. After ruminating on this passage, I have come to understand that God doesn’t need to send me a sign, there are signs all around me. But the greatest sign of all was, is His Son, Jesus Christ.

  4. regarding the HS course . to JD and crew. the Lord is asking me to post this for you. His word to me for you:
    as you have received my Spirit by faith. now you are equipped and empowered to do my will. Now go forth in act in faith to my Spirit’s promptings and My Word. and dont you worry about the outcome. Your role is to act in faith. I AM responsible for and will take care of the outcome , which shall BE as my Word declares. and don’t spend so much mental energy trying to figure it all out before you act. i will reveal to you what you need when you need it. you act in faith on what you know, more will come.

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