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Elijah – First Among Seven Thousand (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
The Truth Network Radio
September 14, 2022 6:00 am

Elijah – First Among Seven Thousand (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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September 14, 2022 6:00 am

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Many Christians cannot deliver their message because they can compromise the testimony in the workplace not the religious testimony they just have a poor work ethic and nobody respects that nobody even likes them that grumpy their moody their undependable they change the rules as they go along, just like everybody else and I want to come you Jesus not I want to hear it from you, but in you when you are a top gun in your professional give your ditch digger or surgeon. Whatever you may be God will send people to this is cross reference radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville.

Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of Genesis. Please stay with us after today's message here. More information about cross reference radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching today. Pastor Rick will bring us part two of this study called Elijah first among 7000 will begin in first Kings chapter 17. The name began to grow on the man like his beard like his garment gave life to the name. Others could have been named Eliza nothing like Elisha others could've had that may been burning incense to bow, not this man. Others go around with Christians and Christian names and nothing about them is Christlike.

So from false worship of Balto true worship of Jehovah the living God wherever he went. He spent his life upholding the truth, holding next to the false worship the true worship and of the 7000. He alone called on God in the face of those who rejected God Obadiah when he was saving that the 50 prophets to one cave. The 50 prophets to another cave. He did it quietly is better that he did it all course, Eliza didn't write out yes but Eliza also ran. He ran a command in the time that he did not run it command what he ran anyway. He was rebuked for and so we have a fireball that has scorching and radical methods because that's what it took. At this time in his life. Understand this, Elisha. His rodent will fill the shoes of Eliza the teacher when Eliza is taken home in the chariot of fire essentially translated even say rapture's student will take his place. Elisha was warm, soft-spoken, more graceful, intended this times allowed it is times allowed it because of what his teacher had accomplished for him. Eliza he could not be soft-spoken to Ahab and Jezebel. They could not be a mild-mannered clergy.

He never would have one in the face of flagrant sin, impudent wrongdoing. That's what he was up against. And so God raised this man again with liquid fire in his blood, who came against who met them head on his head was made stronger than the head of Ahab and Jezebel.

I believe by the time his ministry was over there were more than 7000 people in Israel.

In the longer bout to bow. I believe that many of the children who are being raised up would come under the influence of the student.

Elisha and this is because of what God had done in Eliza this man of God. And so now we turn to our text in first Kings chapter 17 verse one and Eliza the Tisch bite of the inhabitants of Gilead, said to Ahab, as the Lord God of his relatives before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years except at my word. And so our text begins the story of the life and times of the prophet Elisha, we have not heard of him before. This is how he shows up in the Scripture, and it shows up with a conjunction again verse one of chapter 17 and that's the conjunction that links it with everything that was just said and what we call chapter 16 the when they put together the book of Kings.

There were no chapter divisions and so you would go right from verse 34 into what we call 17 one without versus and without chapter distinction that is on purpose. That and that conjunction is therefore an addition of God and it says what has gone before. This is directly linked to what I am about to say right now and again. The time demanded a red-hot man in his first recorded words or words of punishment or words of judgment. How many of you are afraid to talk about hell to a lost soul. How many of you plan want to tell me is going to hell what is going to hell you believe that, but you don't want to tell him that why what I'm free will like me anymore is dangerous ground should not preach about hell and to lead to preach about hell. But again, we are led and we don't do it because we are afraid we are wrong, so power in this, what are you doing for the unbeliever. If you're holding back the truth is not seeker friendly, that's self friendly.

We don't want the friction and thus the appropriate message of a man like Elisha stands up and says route is here. Listen again. Look at his words in verse one as Jehovah God of Israel lives now. That of course is smack in the face of the Kings for Godbout and he said then makes this distinction, before whom I stand, you, I stand before him and then he pronounces the sentence. There shall not be dew nor rain that's pretty severe is not even going to be enough for a bug to lick.

It's out of here and then what does the King say nothing. What Jenny said. The man's name hello intimidated him. I get the you know you'd love to have a picture of Eliza is probably a frightening character. Or maybe he was actually a pretty scrawny puny guy with the power of God was on him. So mightily that it was awesome and I'm saying that God and what you know when they came to arrest him. They send the company of men platoon three times will get to that and so the punishment for the evildoing.

This was the right field for the prophet for this kind of man. This was perfect again. Daniel this character, from when he know what we know of him was not the right tool for this job. Daniel was the you couldn't put Eliza in the palaces of Nebuchadnezzar, they would have killed him to kill them, but it would it would not have been very Kings court, like with allies of their high she can't do that to the grapes and or you know you wouldn't care the about etiquette it be telling you like it is your taken NS that we want to say so that we have a mighty God that fits the man for the job and the and the times that he lives in and he raises up this one character that actually all of us might've been a little bit uncomfortable with this is what was needed. This is why he was so different in his arrival in his ministry is as sudden as the lightning that often accompanied his ministry.

I want to be a guy like that to what am I ready to not see the rewards you know what we want to do. We want to preach Christ.

We want to see the person crumble before yes I repent. I want to give it to you right now we want to see and wait on any of the Christian around to scoop away from us to get credit for that I'm sorry my quota. I've been preaching to this this month is my child walking and say my child either.

I do it or so. One man plants in the waters God causes the growth none of us get the credit he gets all of the credit because all the credit is due him and the prophets like Elijah knew this full well and they live that way and they never let it get away from him and God inserts a critical footnote right before that and Elijah liquid me at verse 34. And here it says in his days Ahab hi L of Bethel built Jericho, he laid his foundation with a by ram his firstborn, and with his youngest son Sago. He set up its gates, according to the word of the Lord which he had spoken through Joshua son of nun, wait a minute. We've just gone from okay on right, being evil, more than all the kings of the north before him, and then his son, Ahab the worst in him and then marrying Jezebel and then bringing in bowel worship. Then all of a sudden there's this little footnote oh hi L by the way he went and rebuilt Jericho what he paid for with his two sons. What is that doing their Ahab knew the story he know that Joshua pronounced a curse on the man who would rebuild Jericho. This is the fulfillment of the curse because hi L defied the Scripture please tell me this occurs on building Jericho people building buildings everywhere, so he goes any bills and he finds out that God enforces his word, and so when it says and Elisha, there's a connection between those who defied God's word and those who don't. Ahab is receiving the message it might've been at that moment that God calls Elijah to public ministry. It might've been at that moment that Eliza said tell me again, he went to build in Bethel which is in the territory of the northern kingdom mother under Ahab and the prophecy of Joshua was fulfilled is off to Samaria.

He confronts the king, he tells them that this going to be a drought not even do listen to this in Deuteronomy chapter 11, which no doubt Elisha used as the foundation of his sermon in connection to Scripture didn't need this because he had God's word. Deuteronomy 1116, 17 take heed to yourselves less your heart be deceived and you turn aside and serve other gods and worship them less. The Lord's anger be aroused against you, and he shut up to heaven, so that there be no rain in the land yield no produce, and you perish quickly from the good land which the Lord is giving you hundreds of years ago. This was spoken C Eliza said look, my word is real. God's word is true, and I will preach God's word.

We Christians do we do that or have we made alliances with people who really don't like Jesus too much in a little bit uncomfortable when you talk about them and we made such alliances with them being in business bid in the neighborhood.

Wherever it is, however, it is, and now we've lost our edge.

We lost that zeal is not fire going through about blood anymore. It's oatmeal and messages like this come from the Holy Spirit saying to the guilty still love you and I still want to use you but I need to get back to where you were and I need to come back with joy and I need you to come back as though you've been educated on the battlefield is been seduced a little bit.

Guard against. At this time with me in this punishment of announcing no rain there was a certain justice. The punishment fit the crime because he didn't bow was held up as the God of fertility of reproduction of the productive processes of nature and so God is saying is that right is the one that brings you the harvest is when the bridge the fish from the sea have but I stop the rain.

Let's see if bow can turn that around.

In fact, have but I do for three years. I want to give you a lesson you won't forget and that is I think what is going on. The profit will see how hard this is upon the people as he traveled throughout the land during the trout. It was a hardship even on the righteous ends up at the house of the woman of Sarah for the widow he sees a hardship on her that the drought he was sent to introduce has put on her and he could only be at one widow's house at a time and was hardship there to there at that and that absolutely won't spend much time with it. We see the gentle side of the prophet as he scoops the child up as he lays on top of him and praises he defiles himself ceremonially by touching the dead, the interests of the living brings the boy back to life in the lesson. There is God's grace is stronger than law.

I'm a pastor. Hopefully, that believes in God's grace because I'm the recipient of it every day when Jeremiah says is his mercies are new every morning.

Do you know you cannot have God's mercy without God's grace is not possible. The New Testament word for mercy.

Mercy still existed is a division of of not a division but a distinction between the two, and yet they do not function one without the other. You have to have them both. It's kind of a heart brain and heart kind of thing that vital organs that I am the recipient of God's grace and anytime I find a Christian that has put grace in the backseat of their Christian life. I find a Christian that is lopsided that is in balance and that by definition if you are lopsided you do not have grace when you when you been in the form of illustration. If you see a ballerina and you if if she's lopsided is not graceful, but if she is graceful.

Everything is defined. Everything is perfect everything is balanced. The symmetry is correct. Using that to illustrate and it's unfortunate that we get tied up in special parts of the Scripture and throw all the others out and we become specialist that that's good in the medical profession meds may be good in the automotive profession transmission specialist verse and minerals in the body and Fender man, but when it comes to the word of God. We are supposed to be under grace. We are supposed to be fully balanced, was supposed to have it all. So the idolatry became the culture of Israel, and it would remain a long time. How long until the kingdom was taken away. Listen to this Wednesday. Who becomes king under the prophet Elisha, the student of Elijah here in second Kings chapter 10 we read, then J who sent throughout all this rail and all the work at worshipers of bow, so that there was not a man left would not come. So they came into the temple of bow in the temple of bow was full from one into the other is going to slaughter them in this power grab, but is not really looking to serve Jehovah is looking to just get away get the competition out of the way which the bow worship is brought now and God says to Elijah and first Kings chapter 19 yet. I have reserved 7000 in Israel, all whose needs have not bowed to bow and every mouth has not kissed him that was good for them but it wasn't enough and so in a pastor steps in the pulpit and says listen is not enough they be saved. You've got to serve to its enough to be saved to get into heaven but is still not enough. God wants more from us. This is the same thing. It's one thing not to bow down to Bell, but what are you doing in the midst of these think this is like a reverse sermon. I didn't see it coming. Usually only preach about the 7000 were preaching about Christian elitism when Eliza says I'm the only one.

And then we say oh no you're not there 7000 others that have not bowed to Ballin that is appropriate, but also when that lesson is yes, there are 7000 others. However, there is one that God is filled with fire, and I want to know the secret of that man and the fact that he backs down and whimpers from time to time only tells me that he is the nature like mine and if he is a late nature like mine and my God at the same time and he's accomplished so much for the Lord I'm in.

I can be like Elisha to I may not be as fiery as Elijah, but I can be as effective as allies, and that's what I want in the lives of those who are around me and this is why he is first among 7000. Many Christians cannot deliver their message because they have compromised the testimony in the workplace not the religious testimony they just have a poor work ethic and nobody respects them. Nobody even likes them there grumpy their moody their undependable they change the rules as they go along, just like everybody else and I want to come you Jesus that you I want to hear it from you, but in you when you are a top gun in your professional give your ditch digger or surgeon. Whatever you may be God will send people to you won't have to look for them. They will come to you.

This is why sometimes is hard to witness in the family because the family only remembers things that they perceive is wrong done long ago and they can't get past it. So God has to oftentimes raise up a prophet outside the home to win them that's fine long as they get saved but don't be that Christian is not a good worker and therefore not respected enough to hear the words of life. Israel then is today with many churches forsook her altars today in many churches.

They have forsaken the places of sacrifice first Kings chapter 18 then Elijah said to the all the people come near to me so all the people came near to him and he repaired the altar of the Lord that was broken down somebody put an altar on Mount Carmel because they couldn't get to Jerusalem, but it no longer was functioning that had been broken down and so this man took it upon himself to repair it and here's what we're up against. Today we live in a culture where there's a warmth towards Islam, the rejection of Christ we live in a culture with his advocacy of sexual preserve perversion, but rejection of Christ we live in a society where there are demonic altars of and for abortion and rejection of Christ and again that you in a hospital in one wing you your dedicating yourself to saving lives in the next wing your dedicating your left your yourselves to killing a life is insanity. This is where we live. This is how it was in the days of Elijah bow worship involve child sacrifice live in a culture where there is a food you love for sham science of evolution and psychology and more sham science, which is religion man-made global warming the earth is you know how God nature mother nature and all this other junk standing up against this stuff again. The church is often so wacky so kooky knows saying he even wants any part of it to our shame live in a society with the pleasure of church without Jesus of the Bible is something to be sought hi sometimes I can someone tell me, oh yeah, I go to a Bible teaching church and they will then tell me the name of that church and I know what that church is about and I just like your work, we can say how can you undo that and just to three minutes conversation you can't let's God opens the doors. I tell my why we were at a place once and the church and I I said I had to use restraint from going up the breaking things up in front of everybody. I just wanted to go up on their platform and I just wanted to throw things around to pray, think over there pulpit because it was just so what is this what. Who am I to do that. I can tell you almost did the horses, dogs, and is not for you.

You got your own problem but anyway we live in a society not here were going to get some of our friends. We live in us society that upholds the Constitution. People in our society. There are those in our society who uphold the Constitution, who are conservative politically and reject Christ were we doing with this while I'm a Christian I'm a Mormon and I am also a Mason animals and you can be all that stuff and be a Christian.

Here was a prophet, a man of God who confronted kings came from nowhere, who went anywhere that you want, who was a slayer of false notions about God wherever he met with them who developed his students did not just make students he developed them.

For example, in the beginning of Elijah's ministry here in 17 one. He says right out as the Lord God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, and then we find his student Elisha saying to yet another king, Ahab's son is a matter of fact, as the Lord of hosts lives, before whom I stand, he is carrying on the message but there's more. This was a prophet who steps were ordered by the Lord. Psalm 37 verse 20 through the steps of a good mantle ordered by Jehovah and Jehovah delights in his ways. In verse three of's first Kings chapter 17 God says get away from here and first Kings 17 verse nine God says, arise, go to Sarah fat and first Kings chapter 18 verse one God says to Elijah, and it came to pass after many days of the word of the Lord came to Elijah in the third year sink, goal present yourself to Ahab in second Kings chapter 1 verse three. There we read again God saying the angel of the Lord said to Elijah the to spite, arise, go up and meet the messengers of the king and then in second Kings chapter 2 verse 15 chapter 1 verse 15 and the angel of the Lord said to Elijah go down with him.

Do not be afraid of him. And so what we find is here's this this man of God who can call fire from heaven, and yet he is led by the Lord, he is told to go here he is told to stay there. God protected provided and directed him and every time Elijah got out of that being led by the Lord. He got into trouble. He ran away from a defeated army because he did not wait for what God had to say when I criticizing him when noticing the lessons from all of this and in the end he gets carried away and his student is heartbroken. Second Kings chapter 2 verse 11 and as it happened, as they continued and talked is a picture of the old profit and the new prophet and suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire and separated the two of them and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven and Elisha, that's a student sought and cried out, my father, my father, the chariot of Israel and his horsemen so he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own close listen to this and tore them into two pieces.

The first one was not enough second one is heartbroken. May we be like that may when we're not around people miss us in the thought of us bring the dogs may when we mess up other people know enough about us to make yeah I know you but I know it's hard to know him is a righteous manner. She's a righteous sister that's okay with you been listening to cross reference radio daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. Pastor Rick is teaching from God's Word each time you tune as we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast.

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