Summary: Confrontation means, to bring face to face, a person or persons into a revelation or truth. Confrontation in a Christians life is real! Those that live for Christ will by their very conduct cause confrontation.
THE ELIJAH CHURCH IS A CONFRONTATIONAL CHURCH
INTRO: This is part of a series using the life of Elijah as a picture of the last day Church. It is also a stand alone sermon.
1 Kings 18:1-15 After a long time, in the third year, the word of the Lord came to Elijah: “Go and present yourself to Ahab, and I will send rain on the land.” So Elijah went to present himself to Ahab. Now the famine was severe in Samaria, and Ahab had summoned Obadiah, his palace administrator. (Obadiah was a devout believer in the Lord. While Jezebel was killing off the Lord’s prophets, Obadiah had taken a hundred prophets and hidden them in two caves, fifty in each, and had supplied them with food and water.) Ahab had said to Obadiah, “Go through the land to all the springs and valleys. Maybe we can find some grass to keep the horses and mules alive so we will not have to kill any of our animals.” So they divided the land they were to cover, Ahab going in one direction and Obadiah in another. As Obadiah was walking along, Elijah met him. Obadiah recognized him, bowed down to the ground, and said, “Is it really you, my lord Elijah?” “Yes,” he replied. “Go tell your master, ‘Elijah is here.’” “What have I done wrong,” asked Obadiah, “that you are handing your servant over to Ahab to be put to death? As surely as the Lord your God lives, there is not a nation or kingdom where my master has not sent someone to look for you. And whenever a nation or kingdom claimed you were not there, he made them swear they could not find you. But now you tell me to go to my master and say, ‘Elijah is here.’ I don’t know where the Spirit of the Lord may carry you when I leave you. If I go and tell Ahab and he doesn’t find you, he will kill me. Yet I your servant have worshiped the Lord since my youth. Haven’t you heard, my lord, what I did while Jezebel was killing the prophets of the Lord? I hid a hundred of the Lord’s prophets in two caves, fifty in each, and supplied them with food and water. And now you tell me to go to my master and say, ‘Elijah is here.’ He will kill me!” Elijah said, “As the Lord Almighty lives, whom I serve, I will surely present myself to Ahab today.”
Elijah's journey has gone from cutting away the flesh (Kerith), communion (Zarephath), to now confrontation!
Confrontation means, to bring face to face, a person or persons into a revelation or truth. Confrontation happens all the time we get stigmatised by the word but in reality we are all confronted in some way on a daily basis. When a believer in Christ comes on the scene their is going to be some reaction. Why? Because their mere presence will bring a reaction to God's Kingdom. At work people may be talking crudely but when a believer walks in they will either stop, or deliberately up the ante, this is because they have been confronted by a belief system contrary to theirs! Elijah was coming into a confrontation of kingdoms at Carmel, a different belief system, but before then he would confront Obadiah, a lukewarm Christian in many ways.
Listen to the words of Jesus in Luke 12:49-53 I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! But I have a baptism to undergo, and what constraint I am under until it is completed! Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law."
TRUTH CAUSES A DIVISION OR CONFRONTATION, EITHER YOU SUBMIT TO IT OR DENY IT.
Simeon prophesied this in Luke 2:34-35 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: "This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too."
And again we find this confrontation in Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
Obadiah was highly place in Ahab's kingdom, he was next to the king himself. Obadiah stands in scripture as one of the most baffling and bewildering figures. On one hand he served Ahab on the other he held God in great reverence. Obadiah means "servant of God". It may be appropriate to say Obadiah represents an example of the carnal, or soul living Christian who is typified by the Laodicean Church in Revelation 3, who Jesus calls lukewarm! He calls Elijah God's representative "Lord", but Elijah says to him "Go tell your "Master", Elijah is here!