Summary: In every generation of the kingdom of God, He is looking for bold men and women of God to make their stand of faith and preach the word.
“Stand In the Gap!”
Ezekiel 22:30 “I searched for a person to stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one.”
Read: I Kings 16:29-17:1
29 Now Ahab the son of Omri became king over Israel in the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah, and Ahab the son of Omri reigned over Israel in Samaria twenty-two years. 30 Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the Lord more than all who were before him.
31 It came about, as though it had been a trivial thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he married Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and went to serve Baal and worshiped him. 32 So he erected an altar for Baal in the house of Baal which he built in Samaria. 33 Ahab also made the Asherah. Thus Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel than all the kings of Israel who were before him. 34 In his days Hiel the Bethelite built Jericho; he laid its foundations with the loss of Abiram his firstborn, and set up its gates with the loss of his youngest son Segub, according to the word of the Lord, which He spoke by Joshua the son of Nun.
17:1 Now Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the settlers of Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the Lord, the God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, surely there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word.”
1. Ahab- King of Israel for 22 years. From the time of the division of the kingdoms, Israel had known only evil kings.....and he was the most evil of all.
2. Jezebel- princess of Sidonia, a cult nation near Israel. She was a worshiper of Baal and Asheroth.
She married Ahab and enticed him to worship idols also.
3. Elijah- a simple man of God from Tishbeah, a small nowhere place in the area of Gilead. Too small to be called a town. It was a rugged place of solitude. Kind of like the Outback in Australia. He was a man of great courage and conviction. He was a man of great faith. He was a man on mission. He was a man that was called to confront sin and wickedness in the world he lived in. He was a man with a message from God. And his message to Ahab was (I Kings 17:1)
He was a man who was willing to “Stand in the Gap” for God!
FOUR LESSONS ON STANDING IN THE GAP FOR GOD!
1. God looks for people who are truly His!
Elijah was obviously a true man of God. Even his name spells out who he belongs to.
Elijah- El means God.. Jah means Jehovah.. The “i” means “my”.
Elijah’s name means “The Lord is my God!” No question.
** Today, God is still looking for servants who are truly His!
2 Chronicles 16:9 “the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.”
Do you want to feel the power of God in your life?
The only way you ever will is to totally give your heart to Him!
He wants to empower you! He wants to bless you! He is seeking you out today to radically change your life! But He won’t do this for someone who half-heartedly serves Him. You must be fully committed to Him! Your heart must be completely His!
2. God looks for special people at difficult times!
** God needed a special man to shine the light in the darkness of those days.
He didn’t find him in the palace or court.... He didn’t find a celebrity.... He didn’t find a professional theologian from the school of prophets.
You see, God didn’t need someone with earthly power.....
He didn’t need a man of culture....
He didn’t necessarily need a highly trained religious scholar.
The kind of man God needed to Stand in the Gap for Him couldn’t be suave or slick...He simply had to be tough. He had to have courage. He had to have integrity. He had to be committed!
** In our world today- in our schools, factories, offices- we need committed men and women of God and young people of God who have integrity and courage who will stand in the Gap!
**Think about the past year... Where have you stood? Have you corrupted your principles in order to stay in business? To get a passing grade? To be promoted at work? To be part of the “in-crowd”?
** Have you overlooked bad language or sinful behavior that once shocked you?