1 Kings 19:21 Burn The Bridges Of The Past

So Elisha left him and went back. He took his yoke of oxen and slaughtered them. He burned the plowing equipment to cook the meat and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he set out to follow Elijah and became his servant. 1 Kings 19:21

Elijah had just defeated the prophets of Baal and brought rain back to the land. Jezebel was set out to kill him and he felt alone. God sent him to Elisha, a farmer, to anoint him as the next prophet. As soon as Elisha was anointed, he killed his oxen and burned all his farming equipment. Elisha would  not be able to go back to being a farmer and plowing the fields, his equipment was destroyed, the bridge was burned. He chose to follow Elisha and become his servant.

When a person gets ready to leave a job for a new job, it is often said that he should not burn his bridges to the old job. That is saying that he should leave on very good terms with everyone at the old job. The purpose of that is because there is always a possibility that you may have to return to that old job, because the new one may not work out as planned. This is more common when a person leaves to do a new business adventure.

While this may be acceptable in the business world, it is not acceptable in life where God is leading and guiding. When God calls a person out of one area, He will never have that person return to that area. The Israelites were called out of Egypt and were never to return there. People are called out of sin, to never return there.

At a minimum, as a believer, you have been called out of a lifestyle of sin. You are not to go back into that sinful lifestyle. Burn those bridges to that lifestyle to prevent being able to return.

God may also be calling you forward into some ministry position. Be willing to move forward with God by stepping forward and burning the bridges behind you. When God moves you forward it will always be for the best. Do not hold on to the past. Grab what God has for you now.

Has God asked you to cross a bridge to a new location, physically or spiritually?

Have you burned that bridge?

Or do you keep going back over that bridge?

I pray today that God will guide you forward in His path for you; that God will remove all fear of moving forward and burning past bridges; that God will help you to not return to old ways; and that God will use you to build His kingdom.

Grace Rules

Title: Grace Rules
Author:
Steve McVey
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers
Date: 1998
Pages: 203

The author looks at how many Christians are living for God, but are not always living in joy and excitement with God. People are always condemning themselves for the sins they have committed and feel that they will never measure up to God’s standard of living. They are being robbed of the abundant life that Jesus said every believer will have.

He points out that many Christians are living under the laws of many things to do or not to do. They feel that in order to please God, they must follow all the laws, both God’s and man-made, perfectly. They also impose those laws on others. This type of living is a legalistic life, living by rules, rather than by grace. If the Israelites in the Old Testament were unable to fully obey the laws of God, no one today can begin to do it either.

Looking at the New Testament, the author shows that Jesus fulfilled the law’s requirements which now allows God to pour out grace on His followers. No person is good enough to deserve the life God is willing to give through Jesus. No person will ever become good enough to earn their way into heaven.

This is where grace comes in. God is willing to give you the abundant life in and through Jesus. Jesus is to live in. You are to be controlled by Jesus and the Holy Spirit, rather than by your own thoughts and actions or this world.

It is pointed out that under the law, you have to obey God. Under grace, you will want to obey God. Previously it was a mandatory requirement. Now it is a choice desire.

The Bible calls every believer in Jesus a holy child of God, a royal priesthood. Do you believe that you are a holy child of God and a royal priesthood in God’s family?

This book will help you see the fullness of the grace God is willing to pour out on you. It will help you see how you can have your heart changed to be able to overcome sinful acts in your life.

If you are struggling with living the “full” life Jesus had promised; or if you feel like there should be more to your life with Jesus; or if you feel like you just don’t measure up to God’s standards, then this book is a great book for you to read.

This book is written in easy to read format. There are questions at the end of each chapter for you to ask yourself in response to what was written. Many scripture verses are used throughout the book. I highly recommend every believer to read this book.

1 Kings 18:21 Choose Your God

Elijah went before the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.” But the people said nothing. 1 Kings 18:21

It had not rained in three years in Israel because of their sins against God. God now had Elijah bring all the prophets of Baal and the people to Mt Carmel for a challenge. He had asked the people why they go back and forth between two opinions of who was God, either God or Baal. The people refused to say anything.

People do not like to be tied down to one way of doing things because they want to be able to choose how to do it when they want to do something. They want to be able to choose a different way according to how they feel or how things are going at the moment.

Various churches have been started in which any person of any belief can join. In these churches one can believe in Allah, Buddha, Krishna, Yahweh, Satan, or God and still be accepted. The world believes that a person can believe in any God and still get into heaven.

If these thoughts are true, then the Bible is wrong, God is a liar, and nothing in the Bible can be trusted.

Many “Christian” people claim to believe in Jesus, but end up denying Him in the workplace or school. Or they accept other beliefs at the same time. They have accepted the deception of the world.

You have to decide for yourself what you believe. Once you have chosen what you believe, you must stand on that and not go back and forth.

It is your choice who want to follow. You can follow the gods of this world or you can follow Jesus. There will be consequences to whichever one you follow, but you must choose.

Who do you believe is God, the gods of this world, or God?

Now, who will you follow?

Don’t be silent, but choose today.

I pray today that you will know God more; that you will follow God with all your heart; that you will turn away from all false gods in your life; and that you will be God’s witness to this world.

1 Kings 17:6 A Different Way To Provide

The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook. 1 Kings 17:6

Ahab had become the king of Israel. He completely walked away from God and started worshipping idols. God sent Elijah, a prophet, to Ahab to tell him there would be no rain for several years because of his sins. Then Elijah was told to go into the wilderness to a brook. While there God had some ravens bring Elijah bread and meat, both in the morning and in the evening so that he could have food to eat. During this time of drought, God provided water in the brook he was staying by.

There are people who work at trying to grow some of their food. While some people are very good at gardening and growing fruits and vegetables, others are better at raising various types of animals for food. Although many people try to provide their own food, many more want to go down to the local grocery store and purchase the food off the shelf. Either way, people want to know where their food came from.

Elijah did not know where his food came from, other than from a raven carrying it in to him. Very few people would be willing to eat food that was brought by a raven. The raven does not wash his claws, does not keep the meat clean or refrigerate it, and keeps the food on the ground in the dirt. Yet, that was the way God provided for Elijah to eat.

God is a big God who is in control of absolutely everything. If you are following Jesus and believing Him, God has already told you that He will provide for your every need. What He has not always told you is how He will provide for that need.

If you are doing everything that God has told you to do, you must then rest in the promise God has made to you to provide for all your needs. Be willing to be open to the different ways God will provide for you. Some of those ways may be very strange and unusual as with Elijah getting food from the ravens.

Are you open and grateful for the ways God provides for you?

Or are you keeping your mind closed to God meeting your needs in His way?

I pray today that you will see God’s hand of provision in your life; that you will not turn down any provision God gives you; that you will believe God’s promise to meet all of your needs; and that you will follow God with all of your life.

1 Kings 16:2 You Have Been Lifted Up

“I lifted you up from the dust and appointed you ruler over my people Israel, but you followed the ways of Jeroboam and caused my people Israel to sin and to arouse my anger by their sins.” 1 Kings 16:2

God was speaking to King Baasha through the prophet Jehu. God stated that Baasha had been a nobody, but was raised up to be the king of Israel. Now that he was king, he was leading the people into sin by following the sinful ways of Jeroboam. God was getting angry with their sins.

Leadership is a heavy responsibility for any person. Whoever is the leader of people sets the tone of action for the people. This tone can be a positive one or a negative one. The people will only do what they see their leaders doing, because that is what is happening, they are being led.

The world does not care about how they lead as long as they are the leaders and it works for them. The leaders of the world usually do not look at what God wants or desires.

Every person is a leader at some level. Some will be leaders of an entire nation, while others are just a leader of their family and maybe a couple of people at a workplace. Very few people are not in a position of leading someone else.

As a believer, who is a leader, you must be first concerned with what God wants you to do. The actions God requires of you is to first live for Him, and then you are to lead others to live for Him.

Jesus told every believer to go out and make disciples of everyone. This making disciples is the process of leading other people in what it means to be a follower of Jesus.

How are you leading other people?

Are you making them disciples of Jesus, following God’s ways of living?

Or are you causing them to sin, following the ways of this world?

Do not cause God to be angry with you because you choose to lead people into sin and away from God. God raised you up for a purpose to lead others to Him, do not make Him angry.

I pray today that you will see where God has raised you up from; that you will see who God has you leading; that you will be a leader who fully obeys God; and that you will not be the cause of other people to sin against God.

1 Kings 15:12 Getting Rid Of All Idols

He expelled the male shrine prostitutes from the land and got rid of all the idols his ancestors had made. 1 Kings 15:12

Asa had become the king of Judah and followed God very well. He did what was right in the eyes of God just like David had done. One of the things he did was getting rid of all the idols across the land. Asa had turned the eyes of Judah back onto God.

It has been said that people are made to worship. They will worship something whether it is God or something else. Anything that is worshipped that is not God has become an idol for a person.

The idea of worship is in spending the majority of one’s time and effort for something. People idolize other people, things, positions, money, and much more. Satan has deceived the world into thinking that in putting these things first in their lives will make them the best that they can be, and that they will have the best life possible.

Although many of those things can be good when used correctly, none of them bring life to a person. God alone is life. He is the giver of life to everyone on this earth. Without Him there is no life, no purpose, and no value.

All the things of this world are just temporary and will fade away very quickly. They are just idols that may appear to give life, but in reality are just dead, inanimate things created by men.

Once you have become a follower of Jesus, you must seek to get rid of all idols in your life. Focus all of your time and efforts on God. Jesus said that He came to give you abundant life. This is life to the fullest, above and beyond anything that this world can offer.

Take a look at your life and ask God to reveal to you what idols you may have in your life. What are some things that you place before God?

Ask God to give you strength to remove those idols from your life. Do not follow the ways of this world, but follow Jesus. Allow God to be the center of your life and the only One you worship.

I pray today that God will open your eyes to any idols in your life; that you God will strengthen you to remove all idols; that you will have a stronger relationship with God; that you will worship God alone; and that you will do what is right in God’s eyes.

1 Kings 14:22-23 Stirring Up God’s Anger

Judah did evil in the eyes of the LORD. By the sins they committed they stirred up his jealous anger more than those who were before them had done. They also set up for themselves high places, sacred stones and Asherah poles on every high hill and under every spreading tree. 1 Kings 14:22-23

After Solomon had died, the nation of Israel was split into two nations: Israel to the north, and Judah to the south. Rehoboam, one of Solomon’s sons, became king of Judah and led the people into more sin. On top of just committing many sins, they also set up idols everywhere throughout the land. With all of these sins being done, it had stirred up God’s jealous anger, because He was the only true God and the only One to be worshipped.

In various parts of the world physical idols or statues are still worshipped as gods. In more “modern” countries, such as most of Europe and America, the thought of worshipping an idol is a foreign concept. Most people would reject that idol as strange and ridiculous.

Yet, many people throughout Europe and America worship “idols” daily. Their idols are not seen a physical statues that are called ‘gods’. They worship their jobs, houses, cars, hobbies, positions, family, money, status, and the list goes on forever. People focus all their time and attention on these “idols”.

Even some Christians tend to stray into idol worship at times. They idolize certain speakers, or the physical church building, or their position in the church, and many other things in this life.

Regardless of being Christian or not, all idol worship stirs up God’s anger. He is the only one, true God and wants to be seen and worshipped as that.

As a believer you must take a look at where you spend your time and attention. Is it on God and the things He wants…worshipping Him?

Or is it on the physical things of this world?

Do not let your actions stir up the anger of God in your life.  Worship God and God alone.

I pray today that God will reveal any idols in your life; that you will turn from all idol worship to God; that you will worship God alone; and that your actions will please God.