“And after many days it came to pass that the Word of Yehovah came to Elijah in the third year, saying, Go, shew yourself unto Ahab and I will send rain upon the earth.”
The Lord had ordained that the nation of Israel, like a pot set on the open fire, should be heated to the boiling point and continue to seethe on the fire of thorns and briers unto the whistle of escaping steam (Is. 9:18); thus the conditions in the country grew ever so worse. The Sovereign hand of God had predestined before the beginning of time that there should be an anomaly in the temperature of the land so that the evenings were never so cool as to allow for condensation upon the plants and the days never so hot upon that oceans so as to cause the evaporation of the waters, necessary for the forming of clouds for the former and later rains.
This condition, which He proclaimed before the wicked King Ahab, was by the power of His word and was ordained to continue, not according to the word of the prophet, but and when, in the fullness of time, the mouth of Yehovah would speak the word. No amount of sincere petitioning before the throne of grace, even by the children of light, could sway the purpose of God and cause Him to change one iota of the elements of this catastrophe as the struggle for the necessities of life grew more elusive. Now after the prescribed duration of three years had come to pass, Yehovah again enables His servant by the power of His will with a commission.
The time that elapsed between the first meeting of Ahab and Elijah, was established of God as being necessary for the preparation of all parties involved to bring about, not only the show-down with the prophets of Baal and Jezebel, but a feverish pitch of emotional fanaticisms intertwined with religious obsessions unto utter frustration so that the actors would perform with inexhaustible vibrancy and sincerity. The Great King over all the earth had set the table and assembled all the proper guests in this time period. He took away the waters upon the earth and fed them with the wind causing them to be drunk with the dregs of Adam’s humanistic theology, which is nothing but pure hedonisms, while He protected and preserved His servant in a foreign land.
“As Yehovah your God lives, there is no nation or kingdom whither my lord has not sent to seek you and when they said, No, he took an oath of the kingdom and nation that they did not find you” (18:10)
The land of Zidon is to the north of the nation of Israel and is a well-known and respected hub of the commerce and commodities of the sea. It was a part of the royal family of Israel for Ahab had taken his wife, Jezebel, from the land of the Zidonians. Her father was completely devoted to and lived with Baal (Ethbaal) and she was the praise and exaltation of her father (Jezebel). As the conditions of the region depressed and the food of the land began to decrease the fisheries of Zidon no doubt became busy as people attempted to find other sources of food to sustain their lives. Yet in the midst of this country Yehovah God established a ‘refinery’ where the value of a product was proven and the truth revealed (Zar-e-phath) and here He placed His servant in the house of a prepared widow and her son.
As the conditions changed over this three year period, is it ever a wonder how this woman was unnoticed by her neighbours and all who came to the ‘refinery’ on business, that she and her son were fed and healthy? She was the mistress of the house which meant that she owned and operated the facility where they lived and to the careful observer, one day she was preparing her funeral meal when along came a stranger into the house and the meal lasted for many untold days (as the barrel of meal did not waste neither did the cruise of oil fail). While all were failing about her and many languished, she, her son and the stranger continued; curious?
Ahab sent to all the surrounding countries I attempt to find this man who “troubled all Israel” but the news of this wondrous event which was being played out in the back yard of the homeland of his wife, he knew nothing about. Neither did the local authorities or the fellow inhabitants of the town, hamlet of village know anything about these events as Yehovah God preserved and protected His servant.
That which God has revealed cannot be refused or concealed and that which He has hidden cannot be found out. Many professors of the Adamic theology desire to unravel the mysteries of God. They are esteemed for their insights as they pontificate about end times, current day prophesy and the revelations of some new and exciting thing whereby the hearers are drawn closer to God or find just a closer walk with Him. This is the curiosity which God has placed in the sons of Adam. He has also given the children of this habitation itching ears that love to hear some new thing and the insatiable desire to discover either that which has been lost of years past or evidence to contradict His existence and His Word. God has however, prevented the natural man from finding out the work which He has done from the beginning and has decreed that there is nothing new under the sun; therefore man’s search is in vain and his findings are as limited as the world he lives in.
“Elijah went to shew himself to Ahab and a sore famine in Samaria”
The famine had grown so severe that the King had ordered a reconnaissance mission of a two-fold nature. First he was attempting to find water and provisions to feed the animals and second to find the man responsible for this drought. The Lord had turned the heart of Ahab away from conquests and the acquisition of wealth unto self-preservation and survival. He did not give Ahab repentance causing him to cease from his sinful ways but rather to increase the worship of Baal. Now there were four hundred priests of Baal who sought daily to find the solution to the weather problems and to prophesy for the King but neither they nor the King could find out where Yehovah God had sent His Beloved for his protection. Therefore God gave Ahab the notion to physically seek out this man who troubled all Israel and cause him to take back the words he had spoken.
Thus two parties were formed (many others also but only these two are of import to this matter) and as Ahab himself led the one he assigned Obadiah to lead the other. This Obadiah was a man of God and a child of grace whom God had ordained should perform His Will in protecting and sustaining 100 prophets of Yehovah during this extreme crisis. He was also one whom God kept and protected because of His eternal love for him as a son of God but He did this in the presence of the King. He worshipped Yehovah aright in complete disregard for any political edict or social pressure that could be brought to bear by Jezebel or Ahab or any of their so called advisors and he performed that which was of God right before their eyes and none could stay his hand or rebuke him for his actions.
One hundred men is a large enough number at any gathering but for one man to be given this assignment in the midst of a drought, severe enough to cripple an entire region, was a daunting task. Where did Obadiah (servant of Yah) find the water that no one else could find? How did he conceal his actions as he labored with two ventures of provisions to two different locations in order to feed fifty men at a time with bread and water? Oft times it is supposed that bread and water was the meal of punishment for the convict but here God caused this to be a feast for these cloistered men. Not one person in the governmental and religious blunder called Samaria recognized what Obadiah was doing or found out how he could conceal his actions and the very men which the Queen sought because Yehovah God blinded their eyes to the manifestation of His work here on earth; His will is performed on the earth as it is in the heavens.
When Ahab was given this notion to seek out water and trouble there were two paths that were decided upon and two men were appointed to lead the expeditions. Ahab was given to choose his people and to follow the path assigned to him because it was not given unto him to find Elijah. The details of his actions were to be known to Obadiah so communication lines were established in such a manner that if one found water they could advise the other of the location and so when Elijah showed himself to Obadiah, he knew where to find Ahab.
Neither did Obadiah find Elijah for when Obadiah was “in the way” Elijah came and met him. God had ordered the steps of this man who greatly feared Yehovah God to come to a place at a specific time where His servant would find him whom was appointed intermediator between Elijah and Ahab. But lest this servant of God be esteemed more highly than any other son of the dust, God placed a fear in his heart of Ahab and his anger.
“And he said, What have I sinned that you would deliver your servant into the hand of Ahab to slay me?
How have I failed to ‘hit the mark’ so that you would let Ahab kill me? This is the question asked of this one who worshipped the King of Kings as a fellow servant was made known unto him. He asked if this stranger was Elijah because he did not know who he was looking for and Elijah was not wearing a name tag; but when confronted by this revelation, his words were the words of the superstition of man. Each time God revealed Himself to man they reacted in a similar fashion; Moses called himself but a child, Isaiah called himself a man of unclean lips and others fell down as dead before Him because the natural man cannot contain the presence of God. It is no more true when the truth, which is the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah, is revealed, for at the name of Jesus every knee bows and every tongue confess that He is Lord and by this sin is confessed and uncleanness known.
Obadiah’s question is a completely ignorant one but it shows forth the fact that the children of grace are not delivered from the limitation and corruption of this mortal flesh. The incorruptible seed with of the spiritual man knows that He is of the Father and nothing can separate them for God’s love is eternal; but the natural man, being made aware to the life within, is the enemy of the inner man. He is occupied in the pursuit of his own righteousness, just as Adam in the garden as he continues his quest for acceptability before God.
Sin is the inability of man to keep the Law of God and his daily demonstration of that inherent trait so for Obadiah to ask, “What have I sinned?” is a question of ignorance. The sons of Adam thrive in the ignorance of sin as they attempt daily to put off actions, emotions and impulses which have been deemed to be sinful either by society or by religious pundits. But these actions are but the evidence, as is the mindset, of man’s consummate inability to understand that he is completely dead in trespasses and sin. There is no divine spark in Adam’s race and there is none good but God, therefore all men are liars and all fall short of the glory of God; so Obadiah’s question could be answered correctly in two manners. God is not a respecter of persons, therefore nothing anyone could do could cause God to bring forth a judgment other than that which He ordained in Himself before the foundation of the world; man and his ways do not affect the course which God had established; they are indeed part of that course. And, secondly but inseparable from the first, the wrath of God which is the demonstration of His righteousness is poured out upon all the ungodliness of men; single actions are but manifestations of the nature of man. He can no more restrain His wrath than he can extend His love and while He loves His Beloved and has done all things for Her as the children of promise, so He has hated Esau and his ways; “Jacob have I loved and Esau have I hated” (Rms. 9:13).
How interesting it is that Obadiah, a prophet of God, should ask the same question as the widow, the friends of Job and the disciples? This is the mentality of the natural mind.
“And Elijah said, I stand before the living Yehovah of Hosts; surely I will show myself unto him today”
Elijah made no answer for the sin of Obadiah nor did he correct his theology for his mission was not to Obadiah but to Ahab and all Israel. He does not give credence to the accusation of Obadiah that God would carry Elijah away as a trick in order to have him killed by the hand of Ahab nor does he address the notion that God is such a prankster or deceiver. His answer calls upon the living God who lives and reigns forever and is the giver of life. He alone has the power to grant the conception and formation of the bones in the womb so that the needed vessel should come forth at the appointed hour and according to His most perfect will, each has been assigned a time of habitation and the labours and limitation thereof. There was no pat on the back for Obadiah, no assurance of blessing for the work he had done and no compensation for his faithfulness before God for though he greatly feared Yehovah God, he was but the messenger boy to deliver this news to Ahab.
Obadiah was given to hasten to Ahab and deliver the news. Ahab was given to hear and believe the news and to respond to what he heard. Once again the paths of two subjects in the vast creation of God were caused to intersect at a precise, location where Ahab’s anger was abated and Elijah was emboldened to speak the Word of God. In great nobility and civic pride, Ahab asks Elijah if he is the one who has disturbed the peace and tranquility of the nation by agitating life and causing this calamity with such a drought. Never a man was accused of having such great power and was this to have happened today, this man would be a celebrity sought after by millions.
Elijah, however, was not enticed by this flattery nor was he repulsed by such blasphemy for it was to be expected in the nature of this vessel who was of his father the Devil. So it was when the Pharisees and lawyers accosted Jesus with their questions and accusations; not one of them knew the truth, even though He stood before them, as they sought to give him false praise, saying, ‘We know that of a truth You are a prophet’ and calling Him Elijah or Jeremiah or one of the other prophets, but this empty flattery was to no avail as the Lord came in the form of the Elect Servant of God. He came to make evident the work that was finished before the foundation of the world wherein the blood of the perfect sacrifice was shed for the redemption of His people from their sin in Adam and to the manifestation of the wrath of God against the first born of man, Adam. So Elijah said, “I have not troubled Israel, but you and your father’s house in that you have forsaken the commandments of Yehovah and have followed Baal” (18:18)
The Law of God is contained in these two words; the love of the children for their Father and the love of the children for each other because of the love of the Father. Anything that falls short of perfect compliance with the commandment of God is a transgression of the Law and is therefore sin. Man who is born of woman from the dust of the earth cannot love God for the Love of the Father is not in him; neither can he love one another as they each fight and struggle for their daily bread in this life. Thus the natural man cannot love God whom he cannot know and his actions demonstrate the absence of this ability. The sin of Jeroboam, whereby he caused all Israel to sin, was simply nurtured and watered by the nature of man to the point where Ahab epitomized the corruption of death within the earthen vessel.
Baal is the other master that man follows, who is made a god but is indeed no god. He is the owner of the natural field from which man is formed, being the god of this world, and the one unto whom man is joined for his entire life. Nothing can separate the natural man from his father with all his cares, his desired and his pursuits and when He who restrains, detains and holds back the natural penchants of the creature is pleased according to the purpose of His will to release and enable such ways, the evidence of the death within is manifested. Thus it is by the grace of God that man is contained from his natural devices and his lusts contained as He has said, “Hitherto shall you come but no further and here shall your proud waves be stayed” (Job 38:11).
The children of the Kingdom of Light do not follow after this other master. The vessels they inhabit are indeed drawn after the things of this world and for a time appointed they walk according to the prince of the air, but the Lord Himself has swept the house clean of the leaven within so that the incorruptible seed may be a partaker of flesh and blood and be not polluted by the sin of the dead body. The natural ears hear the call from the market-place and the voice of the stranger, which is the language of Ashdod and desires to follow after singing and dancing; but the children do not hear the voice of the stranger, neither will they follow after him and so all Israel was manifested as they followed the ways of the master in the inabilities of Adam.
“Then Elijah said, I only remain a prophet of Yehovah but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men”
Had Elijah forgotten about Obadiah? And what about the hundred prophets of God whom he hid from the government and their henchmen? Where was the invitation for who-so-ever-willed to come and join with him in his crusade to rid the land of immorality and injustice as the nation would be purged with the blood and hyssop? When Elijah introduced himself as the servant and prophet of Yehovah not one person assembled that day rose up to support him or fell down in repentance for their sin, rather a deep silence was consent to the contentment to their ways.
Yehovah God showed not only the impotence of all other gods and the power of His will before all these people but He caused them to rise up and slay eight hundred and fifty men and there is no record of any conversions or repentance from the sin of Adam. When the Spirit reveals truth to the children of the Truth it is not for the natural man but and when the Spirit gives insight and understanding to the children of the King it is about the natural man and the world he lives in. The testimonies of the particular nature of the all-inclusive sovereignty of God over all things is a comfort to those who walk in the Light of Yehovah but unto they which wander in darkness it is ignored and rejected.
The Stumbling block and Rock of offence is laid in Sion as the foundation cornerstone of the building of God. The wise master builders of this world have rejected it though it is in plain view but it is a building whose foundation is sure. Though the eyes and desires of man are drawn after the building built of man upon the dust of the earth, yet the members of that building whose builder and maker is Yehovah God, are preserved and protected in Him. Yehovah revealed Obadiah unto Elijah and no one else but every one reserved unto Him who had not bowed the knee to Baal or kissed him were and ever shall be members in particular of that body which is One. Though each member is manifested in an appointed time to accomplish the good works they have been created unto in the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah, they also shall know the frailties of the flesh and the vanity of this world. Elijah was a powerful prophet of Yehovah God and a wretched vile sinner after the flesh; thus it is all of grace.
Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
August 12, 2018