Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Truth Or Consequence

If we never take a stand; we will never leave a mark.  As I was re-reading a familiar passage of Scripture, I was astonished at the prophet’s boldness, confidence in God, and the demonstration of God’s power through Elijah.  I admit, sometimes I wonder if I have the confidence as Elijah to stand against the god of this world. 

Out of a desperate plea for their hearts, Elijah’s challenges the children of Israel about their devotion to God.  His desire was pure and even godly but it was extremely costly-he stood alone.  Besides standing alone, he was labeled “a troubler of Israel” (I Kings 18:18)  A great prophet of God who would never taste death was disgraced by God’s children.  Yet, Elijah wasn’t afraid to speak the truth towards those in authority, he rebuked them.  He confronted the hearts of the people to cause their hearts to make a decision.

 When we are silent; we allow evil to rule.  Jesus didn’t ask for us to remain silent, He asked us to be a witness to the world. (Mark 16:15)  Elijah saw the rebellion of his people, the power of those in authority, and the indecisiveness of the people.  Elijah didn’t wait for a new election or a poll to be taken; he demanded the people to choose who they would serve.  Although he was the only prophet standing for the Lord, he didn’t back down or stop preaching against wrong.  According to the Word, Elijah was physically outnumbered when compared to the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and four hundred prophets of Asherah who ate at Jezebel’s table. (I Kings 18:19) 

As I look around me, sin is rapid.  No matter where you walk, sin is present.  Whether it’s a slanderous comment behind the back of a co-worker, gossip in the church foyer, or a lustful eye at the mall.  Sin desires ownership of our hearts; its power leads to eternal destruction.  We must understand our choices have consequences, silence doesn’t excuses them.  Jesus said the “harvest is PLENTIFUL” but the labors are FEW. (Luke 10:9)  Yet, what I love the most is that the Jesus is the Lord of the Harvest.  The harvest is ready to work because Jesus paid the price for the field.  It’s where the pearl of great price is found! 

Sometimes we will stand alone in the world but we are never without back-up!  God’s only a call away!  He will always stand beside us when we stand for Him.  God doesn’t leave us to a pack of wolves, if anything he reveals who the wolves in sheep’s clothes are.  A true witness of God will never be silence in the crowd because the Spirit of God will manifest the truth.  God always confirms His Word and will perform the signs and wonders of those who believe His Word.  It’s not only a promise but a guarantee of God’s support-Jesus said it! 

Boldness only comes from the Holy Spirit!  So, we truly need to pray for not only the leading but the boldness to stand.  God will never disappoint us!  Elijah challenged the people’s to make a decision, a true hearted decision to turn from evil and surrender to God.  Isn’t this what repentance is?  What caught my attention in the passage of I Kings 18:30-35 was “Elijah rebuilt the altar.  Elijah called the people’s attention to follow him back to the altar of God!  It’s a humbling and terrifying thought, “Do we remember what the altar is for?”  Our altar is desperately broken and needing repair but who is willing to get the hammer?  Who is willing to lead the people back to the foundation of their faith?  An altar has to have a sacrifice for it to be genuine, so do we remember the Lamb who paid the price?  It’s not about who supports our belief in the crowd, it’s about who’s leading the indecisive people to a decision.  Who’s standing for truth?  Elijah used twelve stones to represent the tribes of Jacob who was changed even his name “Your name shall be Israel.” Our history can’t be destroyed because truth will always reign-Jesus! Elijah didn’t just lead the people to the altar but he called upon the name of the Lord.  The fire of God fell not only to prove who Elijah stood for but the TRUE GOD WAS REVEALED.  God will silence your enemies and remove evil from our midst but we have to be bold enough to take a stand.  It’s time to call upon the name of the Lord, walk in the truth, and in the power of Spirit.  The harvest is plentiful, so the question is are we following the call?