In the reading today we begin the reading of a king of Judah by the name of Asa (1 Kings 15), and it is said of him, “Asa did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, as did David his father” (15:11). We are also told previous to Asa of Abijam whose “heart was not perfect with the LORD his God as the heart of David his father” (v. 3).
Asa is Abijam’s son, and Asa walks with God.
In reading 1 Kings 15 – 22 we continue to see this phrase of the kings of the Northern Kingdom of Israel, “And he did evil in the sight of the LORD…” or something similar. We are told of two kings at least for Judah who were walking with God like David, who is the standard, for the walk of kings.
If kings are to do their kingdoms well; it would do them good to walk with God. Those who do not walk with God will lead their people to destruction. I would dare say the economic and moral collapse of a nation is due to the lack of godly, spiritual leadership in that nation. Including the United States of America.
Thank God for prophets of God who will stand for the truth, no matter what. In chapter 17 we are introduced to Elijah, often called the “prophet of fire”. When we are introduced to Elijah we have him saying to one of the most wicked kings to ever live – Ahab –
“And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, ‘As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word.” 1 Kings 17:1 (KJV)
Wicked kings need a prophet of God who will get in their face and call their sin and rebellion against God what it is. Elijah did just that, and God proves that Elijah is His prophet by answering Elijah’s prayers, sending drought, with no morning or evening dew, or rain. We learn later that this drought lasted for 3.5 years.
One thing we need to realize is that when this prophet pronounced this drought upon the Northern kingdom, it was a drought that affected the evil as well as the righteous, even Elijah. That is why we see Elijah being sustained by God through ravens providing meat and bread a the “brook Cherith” (17:5).
Elijah was a man of fire and faith. He believes God; acts for the glory of God; and challenges the false prophets of the wicked queen Jezebel on Mount Carmel. He does something unheard of. The prophets of Baal had been known to put fine under their altars and deceive people into thinking that Baal was actually lighting the fires on their altars; but Elijah says, “Put no fire under” (18:23), and he himself “put no fire under” the altar, but both he and the prophets of Baal would be totally dependent upon the one who would answer by fire. Elijah upon the GOD of creation and glory. The false prophets upon the foolish hopes of false teachings.
Could it be that the reason there is no one challenging the prophets of finance, health, technology, science, is because we have not any who are really confident in the power of God as Elijah was? Why not? Do we not have the power of Jesus Christ. I am only saying that our financial problems are related to spiritual bankruptcy, our health decay is spiritually related; the only reason for our technological growth is given us by creative thinking that was originally given to man by God; and true knowledge [science] comes from God. The rest is bunk and leads to spiritual decay and death.
When Christian churches across our land are lighting the fires of the altar with entertainment rather than preaching the word of God; it is of little wonder why we are so spiritually bankrupt. Those who are dependent upon drawing a crowd; and not preaching the word of God and the gospel of Jesus Christ are similar to the prophets of Baal who put fire under the altars.
The answer to the sins and all ills in the world is Jesus Christ.
-Tim A. Blankenship