Summary: Have you tried and failed? God says, “Get up and try again!” Have you prayed and received no answer? God says, “Get up and pray again!” Have you believed for a miracle and nothing happened? God says, “Get up and believe a 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th 6th, 7th time!
“GET UP AND LOOK AGAIN”
A. HUMOR: INCENTIVE TO LEARN MATH
1. A boy was having trouble in public school with MATH. His parents tried tutoring him. His grades stayed so low his parents decided to move him to a Catholic school where strict nuns taught and all the students wore uniforms.
2. After about 3 weeks, the report cards came out, and the boy had gotten an "A" in math! His parents were proud their son had made such a turnaround, but were also quite curious.
3. So they asked, "Billy, how did you do it? After a year of failing, what motivated you to so drastically advance to the place of making an A in Math? Was it the teachers, the textbooks, your friends?” He answered, “No!”
4. He continued, "When I came into that school the first day and I looked up at the front wall and saw this huge PLUS SIGN with a man nailed to it, I knew right then that this school was real serious about math!"
5. The Cross DOES tell us that GOD is serious – about our REDEMPTION!
B. TEXT: 1 KINGS 18:21-24, 38-46
21 Elijah went before the people and said, "How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him." But the people said nothing. 22 Then Elijah said to them, "I am the only one of the LORD's prophets left, but Baal has four hundred and fifty prophets. 23 Get two bulls for us. Let them choose one for themselves, and let them cut it into pieces and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. I will prepare the other bull and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. 24 Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the LORD. The god who answers by fire—he is God." Then all the people said, "What you say is good." 26 [The worshippers of Baal] took the bull given them and prepared it. Then they called on the name of Baal from morning till noon. "O Baal, answer us!" they shouted. But there was no response; no one answered. 29 Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice. But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention. 30 Then Elijah said to all the people, "Come here to me." They came to him, and he repaired the altar of the LORD, which was in ruins. 36 At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: "O LORD, 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. 37 Answer me, O LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, O LORD, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again." 38 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. 39 When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, "The LORD -he is God! The LORD -he is God!" 40 Then Elijah commanded them, "Seize the prophets of Baal. Don't let anyone get away!" They seized them, and Elijah had them brought down to the Kishon Valley and slaughtered there.
41 And Elijah said to Ahab, "Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain." 42 So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. 43 "Go and look toward the sea," he told his servant. And he went up and looked. "There is nothing there," he said. Seven times Elijah said, "Go back." 44 The seventh time the servant reported, "A cloud as small as a man's hand is rising from the sea." So Elijah said, "Go and tell Ahab, 'Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.' " 45 Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain came on and Ahab rode off to Jezreel. 46 The power of the LORD came upon Elijah and, tucking his cloak into his belt, he ran ahead of Ahab all the way to Jezreel.
C. CONDITION OF ISRAEL
1. The nation of Israel was in a shambles. A period as terrible as the Great Depression held the nation in its grip.
2. For 3½ years, there had been no rain. No crops for food. No grass for cattle. To an agricultural nation, this was destruction worse than war.