Summary: A comparison of Elijah and John the Baptist with the emerging Church of the last day. First in a series for those of a prophetic persuasion.
THE ELIJAH CHURCH
IS A LAST DAY CHURCH
We are commencing a study on the Prophet Elijah as a type of the Last Day Church. The prophet Malachi likens Elijah as one who will come before the Day of the Lord.
Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.
In Luke 1:17 we read about John the Baptist a forerunner of Jesus “He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” From this we see a type of one who prepares the way of the Lord for scripture also records the words of Jesus in Luke 7:24-27 When the messengers of John had departed, He began to speak to the multitudes concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? “But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed those who are gorgeously appareled and live in luxury are in kings’ courts. “But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet. “This is he of whom it is written: ‘Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.’ The context was from Isaiah’s prophecy in Isaiah 40:3-5 The voice of one crying in the wilderness: “Prepare the way of the LORD; Make straight in the desert A highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted and every mountain and hill brought low; the crooked places shall be made straight and the rough places smooth; the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”
From these scriptures we can assume that the “spirit and power of Elijah” is a picture of those who prepare the way for the Lord. We know that the Lord is coming again, that is not an issue, but what of the Last Day Church? Should they not function as John did in the spirit and power of Elijah preparing a way for the King to come again. With this revelation in mind the life of Elijah becomes a very practical demonstration of the characteristics of this forerunner church.
Elijah means my God is Jah or Jehovah is God – his name is mentioned 30 times in the N.T. which is the number of Priesthood denoting the throne of God, authority and maturity – Elijah’s contest with the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel is a prophetic panorama of end time spiritual warfare. Johns name means Jehovah favored.
Here are eight comparisons that we can see in the lives of Elijah and John from which we can draw parallels of the Last Day Church
1. The True Church Revealed
1 Kings 17:1 And Elijah the Tishbite, of the inhabitants of Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the LORD God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, except at my word.” Sudden mention – unexpected – the true church exists today but certainly has not been seen from the standpoint of the world
2. The Church that Comes from the Wilderness
A people that are prepared in the wilderness, we all are destined for wilderness seasons. This is a Biblical principle: here are some truths about the wilderness -
a. The Wilderness God’s Will
Jesus was led by The Holy Spirit into the wilderness as were God’s people after the exodus. The wilderness season had a determined time, the wilderness period when God’s covenant people left Canaan and went to Egypt was 400 years. However, God had promised a release. God’s covenant people wandered in the wilderness 40 years.
b. The Place of Teaching
The wilderness is likened to our word for desert, which comes from the Hebrew word dabar, meaning to teach or to be taught. Deuteronomy 8:2,3 “And you shall remember that the LORD your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. “So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD.
c. The Place of Divine Provision
In the wilderness God provided for His children Israel
d. The escape from enslavement to expectation and advancement towards your promise