Hard Hearted

And it came to pass, when midday was past, and they (the prophets of Baal) prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded.

Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.

I Kings 18:29, 38

And Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and withal how he had slain all the prophets with the sword.  Then Jezebel sent a messenger unto Elijah, saying, So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I make not thy life as the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time.

I Kings 19:1-2

In case you are not familiar with the story in I Kings 18, here is a quick summary: 1. Elijah challenges the prophets of Baal to a showdown.  (Each would get one bullock and pray to their god or God to consume the sacrifice with fire)  2. Baal’s prophets pray and dance and cut themselves all day to no avail (while Elijah mocks them).  3.  Baal does not answer.  4. Elijah has the people dump a bunch of water on his sacrifice.  5.  Elijah prays to God.  6. God sends down fire and consumes not only the bullock on the altar, but also the “wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water” just to leave no room for doubt.  7. The people choose God over Baal.

Now that we are all up to speed, we can look at the first two verses of the next chapter.  Ahab goes back to Jezebel and tells her “all that Elijah had done”.  Jezebel then tells Elijah that she is going to kill him.

That is a picture of a person with a hard heart.  In one of the most amazing displays of divine power that the world has ever seen, God clearly proves His superiority to Baal.  Baal could do nothing.  Baal failed.  God won.  And in the face of this epic failure from Baal and epic triumph by God, Jezebel still hates Elijah, still hates God, and is still trusting in Baal.

That may seem silly to us, but how often do we continue to serve the world and the flesh and the devil despite the fact that Christ has clearly proven His superiority?  How often do we continue on our own path of self=destruction when His way has proven over and over again to be good and right?  I think we may sometimes have a little bit of Jezebel in us.  What a grim reminder of just how hopeless we really are without Him.

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