Summary: A biblical model for revival, from 1 Kings 18

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Elijah was driven with a passion that his apostate nation return to God. The contest on Mount Carmel provides a biblical model for revival both for us and for our nation.

There are 9 elements of the contest on Mount Carmel in 1 Kings 18 that jolted a nation back toward God. Those elements for a revival are:

1. Elijah prayed earnestly that it might not rain.

2. Elijah caused them to realize there was no middle ground anymore.

3. Elijah repaired the broken altar.

4. Elijah reminded them of who they were prophetically supposed to be.

5. Elijah methodically arranged the wood and the sacrifice

6. Elijah filled the altar with water.

7. The fire came down.

8. Sin was removed from the camp.

9. Spiritual restoration lead to earthly and financial blessing.

1. Elijah prayed earnestly that it might not rain.

James 5:17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

The background of this story is that for 3 ½ years Elijah has been praying that it would not rain in Israel so that the people might realize they have sinned and brought God’s displeasure upon themselves. The drought was to prepare the people to repent. The drought was to awaken their sleeping conscience through the door of human need. God often has to get our attention in the natural, before He can speak to us about the spiritual. We begin to get a picture of man who’s concern for Israel was so great that he didn’t care if they suffered in the natural, if it led to spiritual revival. The text in James doesn’t simply say, "he prayed," but that he prayed, "earnestly." He was so moved by their sinfulness that he earnestly asked God, "do whatever it takes to get this people’s attention."

2. Elijah caused them to realize there was no middle ground anymore.

1 Kings 18:21 And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.

Watchman Nee said, "The same fire that melts wax, hardens clay." With such men there is no middle ground. Herod thought he could stay a middle course. He feared John the Baptist, knowing that he was a just and holy man. He enjoyed hearing him preach, and did many things that John suggested, but he never repented of living with his brothers wife, a sin which John confronted him about. Eventually Herod had to chose, and the man who heard John gladly and did many things, had to make a horrendous choice, murder John or lose his wife’s favor. He wished he could have it both ways, listen to John and listen to his wife. God brought him to the place where he had to choose. Instead of choosing life to his eternal shame and damnation he chose to murder the greatest minister of Christ who ever lived. Even so God is in the process at this very moment of bringing and end to Heordian Christianity. We see it in the church, where homosexuals are forcing denominations to perform same sex marriages (blessing services) or risk losing those adherents to a church that will. When Elijah came to Mount Carmel that day, the middle ground disappeared. When John challenged men to respond to God through repentance and the rite of Baptism, the middle ground disappeared. When Jesus walked on earth and said you are either hot or cold the middle ground disappeared. I also believe that just prior to the coming of the Lord, the middle ground that many have been hiding in will also disappear. God said that everything that can be shaken will be shaken.1

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