Summary: Another wonderful example that our God is the "God of no shortages!"
THE WIDOW OF ZAREPHATH
"So she went away, and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days. The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah." I Kings 17:15-16.
I. God uses the humble individual more often than He uses the mighty to support His work:
"Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you." (verse 8)
If God’s work depended only on the rich for its support, do you think that Christianity would have survived the first century?
II. Give attention to the widow’s destitute condition:
"So she said, As the Lord your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in a prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die." (verse 12).
III. Elijah’s stunning request:
"And Elijah said to her, Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son." (verse 13).
Was this request "fair"? At first glance it would seem the prophet was quite selfish but the message here is that "our little will go as far as it is necessary when we put the work of the Lord ahead of our own personal needs." The widow of Zarephath wisely did as she was requested...and reaped a bounteous reward for doing so.
IV. The promise of God’s blessing to those who are obedient:
"For thus saith the Lord God of Israel: The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the Lord sends rain on the earth." (verse 14).
V. What God hath promised, He is well able to perform:
"So she went away, and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days. The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah." (verses 15-16).
"And try me now in this, says the Lord of hosts, If I will not open the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it." Malachi 3:10