Elijah has just put the prophets of Baal to shame. He has experienced the power of God in facing down Ahab the King and proclaiming a 3 year drought — no rain — as proof that God is not being honored in the Kingdom and that God is not honoring Judah either.
During the contest on Mount Carmel in which Baal’s prophets were sounding defeated Elijah insisted that a great amount of their most precious commodity — water — was to be poured over his sacrifice and altar. The altar and sacrifice are completely drenched. There is no way this can be a trick. God sends the fire and the people back Jehovah and Elijah as the false prophets are killed. When word gets to Jezebel the queen about the defeat of her prophets she lets Elijah know that he is a “dead man walking”. Elijah runs —
- He runs to Mount Horeb
- He runs to the place where God is believed to dwell
- He runs to a cave on mount where Moses encountered the burning bush
- He hides on the mount where the Law was given to Moses and God’s chosen people
Elijah wants to die. He is convinced His life and ministry is over. And God says — What are you doing here?
Elijah! you are my hero! My prophet! you are the one who just took a mighty stand on my behalf! WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE!?
How often have we run away and found ourselves in a panic about where life was going and the threats that tomorrow bring? Are we in a relationship that is unhealthy? have we spent money we don’t have? have we sunk into habits we know are destructive? all because we cannot face the uncertainty of the next day.
In those places God says to us — What are you doing here? Don’t you trust me? Haven’t I brought you through much worse? Haven’t I been faithful in the past?
Elijah was told by God to “go back to where you started”. Face the situation. Face the situation knowing full well that I have been with you in the past — and will continue to be with you in the future. No matter how uncertain!
So, fellow disciple. What are you doing here? Is God calling you to go back where you started?
Reference 1 Kings 18-19