KEY VERSE: “And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat” (1 Kings 19:5).
True freedom for a person or nation is anchored on God, not on rickety human concepts, philosophy or institutions. Otherwise, the nations of the world waving flags of so-called independence would not remain shackled by satanic fetters of economic, political and social woes. True liberty also comes by consistently abiding in God and not running away from His ways or avoiding tasks appointed by Him. It is strange that after the defeat of the prophets of Baal and the dramatic answer to prayer for rain, the great servant of God, Elijah, would flee from the evil queen Jezebel and request God to take his life.
He was discouraged and went into hiding in Beersheba, where he sought for freedom from Jezebel and her evil schemes. As he sat under a tree expecting the Lord to answer his prayer for death, he got a renewed strength from God who did not want him to abandon the mission field. There were more battles to fight for the Lord; His purpose for Elijah was not yet over. God seemed to be telling Elijah what He had told fleeing Jacob that, “…for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of” (Genesis 28:15).
Twice, the angel of the Lord woke Elijah to be nourished. He was encouraged and given both physical and spiritual food which offered him the energy to walk a distance of about 200 miles for forty days to Horeb, the mount of God. This chapter in Elijah’s life teaches us not to have the impression that we can leave God out of our lives. He does not expect us to flee from our service posts because of challenges, in pursuit of freedom. At all times and in every situation, we must depend upon the everlasting arms of God to see us through trying times. It also teaches us that lasting and meaningful freedom results from close intimacy with the Lord.
Thought for the day: True and lasting independence is rooted in God.
Bible Reading in one Year: 1 KINGS 1-2