The Prayers of Elijah addresses a time when God sent prophet after prophet to His people, Israel, and yet at every turn of the road they seem to be rushing after other gods.
37 Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that You are the LORD God, and that You have turned their hearts back to You again.” 38 Then the fire of the LORD fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench. 39 Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, “The LORD, He is God! The LORD, He is God!”
1 Kings 18:37-38, NKJV
Upon reading the Old Testament it does not take us long to realize that our world is not so very different from the time of Old Testament Israel. God sent prophet after prophet to His people, Israel, and yet at every turn of the road they seem to be rushing after other gods. 1 Kings 18:20-40 gives us the account of one such time during the life of Elijah the prophet and the miraculous way in which God answered the prayers of Elijah.
Under the reign of Ahab, King of Israel, most of the Israelites worshiped Baal; Elijah had called a meeting with the prophets of Baal and presented them with a challenge. Two altars would be built, and a bull would be placed on each altar; each prophet or prophets would call upon their God to bring fire down from heaven to burn the sacrifice. As the children of Israel stood near watching, the prophets of Baal cried out from the time of the morning sacrifice to the time of the evening sacrifice with no results.
Elijah then had 12 water pots of water poured over the altar; at the time of the evening sacrifice he cried out to God: “LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that You are God in Israel and I am Your servant, and that I have done all these things at Your word. Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that You are the LORD God, and that You have turned their hearts back to You again.” (1 Kings 18:36-37, NKJV)
Verse 38, shown above, tells us that immediately fire from the Lord came down and consumed the burnt sacrifice, the wood, the stones, and all of the water that was in the trench. Then the children of Israel fell on their faces; and they said, “The LORD, He is God! The LORD, He is God!”
What lesson can we take away from the prayers of Elijah? God is God; He is every bit as alive and real today as He was in Elijah's time; this is not a fictitious story, but an event that really happened. Sometimes we tend to think of God differently today because we have not visibly seen miracles such as this performed right before our eyes.
This same God who answered the prayers of Elijah in such a miraculous way is the same God we come to in prayer. Amazing though it seems, we have direct access to Him through the Lord Jesus Christ. God not only listens to our prayers, but He answers them as well. Like Peter, we can cast all of our cares upon Him because He cares for us.
Pray today that you will not be so caught up in the world around you that you forget God.