Lessons in Humility–1. Elijah 2
HE (Jesus) must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. – John 3:30 (NLT)
In the Gospel according to Matthew, Jesus Christ says that there is no one greater than John the Baptist, among those born of women. (Mat. 11:11) In the same Gospel, Jesus also proclaims that whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. (Mat. 23:12) If we consider these two verses together, we will realize that John the Baptist had humbled himself the most, because Jesus exalted him above everyone else. Yes, John the Baptist had only one goal in his mind: “HE (Jesus) must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.” (John 3:30, NLT)
When the Bible first mentions Elijah, he starts right away with his mission.
Now, Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years unless I give the command.” (1 Kings. 17:1, NET)
It is clear from the later verses, that it was the LORD Himself who gave this power to Elijah. But in this verse, only once Elijah uses the Name of the LORD, but gives more prominence to himself – note the prominent “I” . Contrast this with how Moses approached Pharaoh.
Moses… went to Pharaoh and said, “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says, “Let My people go, so that they may hold a festival in My honor in the wilderness.”” (Exodus 5:1, NLT)
The contrast is evident. Moses does not mention anything about how the LORD God has chosen him as the leader of His people. He does not talk about how the LORD has promised to do great things through Moses. All he talks about what the LORD wants. But Elijah was not talking about the LORD. He was talking about himself. He was talking about how powerful he is, but he did not mention who gave him that authority.
Why did pride come into a prophet like Elijah? Elijah was standing before Ahab, the worst king of Israel ever had. He and his wife were abominations in the eyes of the LORD and they were serving false gods. But Elijah was righteous by his deeds. He was not bowing before false gods. He was serving the true living God. See how he proclaims… “As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, WHOM I SERVE…”
Oh dear child of God, when you see other Christians who are not as faithful as you are, do you get angry? Do you look down at people who do not share our faith? Remember it is not our deeds, it is the by the grace of the LORD and the blood of our Savior Jesus Christ, we are saved. We stand as righteous not because of our deeds, so there is no place for pride in a Christian.
But the LORD did not forsake Elijah. The LORD understands us. We may not understand why we are behaving in certain ways, but the LORD knows our inner workings. And He is gracious. So comes an isolation for Elijah. The LORD teaches him humility. Dear child of God, are you feeling lonely? Don’t fret. The LORD is with you, teaching things that you did not know before, preparing you for great things. Don’t be anxious; don’t be upset about your loneliness. But, listen carefully. In that loneliness, there is something more valuable than gold. And when you have learned humility, and when you humble yourself before the LORD, HE will exalt you as He exalted Elijah before everyone’s eyes.
After learning humility from the LORD, Elijah is a different man now. And it is evident in the way he supplicates before the LORD at Mt. Carmel.
The prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: “O LORD, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that You are God in Israel and that I am Your servant and have done all these things at Your command.” – 1 Kings. 18:36 (NIV).
What a turn around? From “it will not rain unless I give my command”, “LORD, I have done all these things at Your command.” What a transformation!!! Amen. Yes, dear child of God, the LORD wants to transform you like this, so that HE can use you for greater things that you cannot even fathom. But in all that remember one thing:
Posted on February 19, 2013, in Christian Life, Daily Manna, Strong Tower and tagged Abraham, deeds, Elijah, grace, Humility, John the Baptist, Moses, pride, righteousness. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.