1 Kings 18:24, “Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the Lord. The god who answers by fire —he is God.”
Elijah is known in the Bible as one of the boldest and most radical Old Testament prophets that ever lived. During the time of Elijah the people of Israel were divided in their worship of God. The majority of the people were turning their hearts towards Baal (a false god of the Canaanites) and God was very displeased with them. Elijah was called by God to turn back the hearts of the people from worthless idolatry to serving the one and only God.
1 Kings 18 records one of his most intense confrontations with the prophets of Baal where Elijah challenged them to a show of power. Elijah’s challenge was simple- whoever’s God could bring down fire from the sky wins. The prophets of Baal spent all day trying to get their god to answer them, but nothing happened. In their desperation they began cutting themselves and pouring out their own blood to prove their dedication, however, fire never came down.
Elijah on the other hand mocked and ridiculed them in their foolish idolatry by saying things like, “Maybe your god is too busy to come now… or he might be sleeping!” However, this only made them slash themselves more and shout even louder. Despite all their efforts the prophets of Baal failed the challenge.
Then Elijah prayed to God in 1 Kings 18:37-39, “37 Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you, Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.” 38 Then the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench. 39 When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, “The Lord —he is God! The Lord —he is God!” Afterwards Elijah had the priests of Baal executed because of their crimes against God by bringing idolatry to the people.
Elijah’s faith in God removed all his fear and gave him the boldness to confront the lies of his day. I pray that you and I will have the same kind of faith Elijah had and boldly face the spiritual opposition of our day. Today, our battle is not against flesh and blood, but with Satanic forces in spiritual places, Ephesians 6:12. We are to battle in prayer and with the Word of God bringing truth to the people.
When we encounter false religions, abortion, immorality, injustice, and spiritual idolatry may we boldly confront it with the truth of Jesus Christ in love!
Are you willing to boldly confront and make a stand against the evil of your culture?
- Ask God for boldness to speak the truth in love, Acts 4:29.
- Prayerfully look for opportunities to confront the evil of your culture with the truth of God’s Word- urban violence, false religion, abortion, sex trafficking, injustice, and the like.
- Like Elijah, by faith, live a life of Holy Ghost boldness!