Summary: Servants must always keep their faith in God when going through difficult times.
THE VANISHING BROOK
17 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.” 2 The word of the Lord came to him, saying, 3 “Go away from here and turn eastward, and hide yourself by the brook Cherith, which is [b]east of the Jordan. 4 It shall be that you will drink of the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to provide for you there.” 5 So he went and did according to the word of the Lord, for he went and lived by the brook Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. 6 The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he would drink from the brook. 7 It happened after a while that the brook dried up, because there was no rain in the land.
8 Then the word of the Lord came to him, saying, 9 “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and stay there;
A.W. Tozer said, “It is doubtful that God can use any man greatly until he has hurt him deeply.”
Are you willing for God to suddenly redirect your steps and your plans, if that redirection leads you in a direction you did not plan to go?
Are you willing to follow the Lord not only through the green pastures and still waters, but down a path to obscurity or great sacrifice?
As we look at our text we need to ask ourselves what is God doing here?, and, What are some lessons that we should learn from this text?.
1. GOD’S JUDGEMENT IS DELIVERED TO AHAB (vs 1)
Now Elijah the Tishbite, who was of [a]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.”
An evil King that worships Baal is on the throne. Baal is a harvest god. He is master over the weather, over crops, and fertility. God has had enough of Ahab and his god and “El Shaddai- the Lord God Almighty is about to display of His power over them.
I picture God up in Heaven saying to Himself “Let’s see how much crops their “harvest god” can produce without any rain.”
So God raises up Elijah to deliver the message. And the showdown is set in motion. God verses Baal. Elijah verses Ahab and Jezebel.
God’s desire is to win back the hearts of Israel and for them to drive out the idols and false gods.
2. GOD’S WILL IS REVEALED TO ELIJAH (vs 2-4)
2 The word of the Lord came to him, saying, 3 “Go away from here and turn eastward, and hide yourself by the brook Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. 4 It shall be that you will drink of the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to provide for you there.”
4 things to remember about God and us!
A. God Speaks- Our job is to Listen
** E.F. Hutton advertisement from 70s & 80s.
“When E.F. Hutton Talks, People listen”
** Momma always told me that I have 2 ears, 1 mouth. I should talk less than half as much as I listen.
God is still speaking today to those who will listen.
B. God Leads- Our Job is to Follow
God is leading Elijah to Cherith. Why?
(1) God’s Timing is Perfect.
It’s not time for Elijah to take the next step. A 3.5 year drought is needed to get the people’s attention.
** Early in Jesus’ ministry He urged folks to not yet reveal Who He really is. Why? The Countdown to the Cross would start ticking.
** God’s Timing is Perfect.
(2) Elijah Needs to be Tested. (Brook is named “Cherith”- cut off)
(3) Elijah Needs to Grow Spiritually/ Get Prepared for the Next Task
** Maybe Elijah didn’t even understand why, but he followed anyway.
** In your life, you may not understand why, but when God takes the opportunity to speak to you and lead you, the best thing to do is lace up your Nikes and follow.
C. God Blesses- Our Job is to be Prepared to Receive It.
* Vs 4- God tells Elijah that He will provide for him THERE.
Most important word is “there”. Why is it important to be “there”?
** “There” is where the brook is
** “There” is where the water is.
** “There” is where the ravens are.
** God is saying “There” is where I am and “there” is where My blessings for you are.”