“And he said, I have been very zealous for Jehovah, the God of Hosts…and I, I alone, am left. And they seek to take my life away. And Jehovah said to him, Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus…I have left seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed to Baal” 1 Kings 19:14-15, 19 (MKJV)
Elijah the prophet had just come from a mountaintop experience. After shutting up the heavens for three and a half years, by the command of the Lord, he challenged the priests of the false god, Baal, to a showdown on Mt. Carmel. He vindicated the Lord as the only true God be calling fire from heaven in the sight of all gathered there—a task which the priests of Baal had found impossible to do. The people united together crying, “The Lord, He is God!” Elijah slew all 450 of the priests of Baal and then prayed to the Lord that rain would return. And then it rained.
A page turned in the life of Elijah, and he fled for his life into the wilderness from the murderous threats of Jezebel. There he prayed a completely different prayer than the prayers of a day earlier. He said, “It is enough. O Jehovah, take away my life. For I am no better than my fathers.” Having reached the presumable height of his ministry as a prophet of God, he decided that he wanted to die.
How and why could such a powerful man of God end up in a situation like this? It is for the same reason that many today falter in their walk with the Lord. For a moment, Elijah took his eyes off of God. All he could see was the present situation. All he could see was his apparent aloneness. He continued 40 days into the wilderness until he came to Mt. Horeb, where a dialog began between Elijah and God. God asks him what he is doing there and he responds that he has fought valiantly for the Lord, and now he is the only one left.
God didn’t call Elijah to Mt. Horeb. He hears Elijah’s complaint and tells him to go, continue doing what he was called to do. And then He reminds Elijah the same thing that all of us today could stand to remember when we feel alone. God still has thousands who remain true to him in the face of apostasy. We are never alone.
Walking with God and yes, partnering with God, takes all we’ve got and more… no one can do this in their own strength, only by the realization that God is doing the work can we find rest as we plow ahead together with Him, with His yoke upon us… Happy Sabbath, brother!