“What doest thou here, Elijah?”
Elijah the prophet was blessed with faith in God, and by faith wrought many wonderful works. He prayed that it might not rain, and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. He prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit. He said to the widow of the city of Sarepta, who was gathering sticks to bake the last cake for herself and her son, then die, Fear not, the barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the Lord sendeth rain upon the earth. So it was. When the son of the widow died, Elijah stretched himself upon the child and prayed God to let the Soul come into him again: the Lord heard his prayer, the child revived, and the prophet presented him to his mother alive. He prayed to the Lord to send fire down from heaven to consume his offering in the presence of the prophets of Baal, and fire came and burned up the altar, the offering, the stones on which the altar was built, and licked up the water in the trench. He slew four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal. These ate a part of the works, by faith, of Elijah; but when Jezebel sent a messenger to him 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 to-morrow about this time,” “he arose, and went for his life.” When in the wilderness he prayed that he might die, but instead, an angel fed him, after which he went to Mount Horeb (desert), where all of us must go when faith is not in exercise. There he dwelt in a cave (bondage); here it was that the Lord said unto him, “What doest thou here, Elijah!” Where is now thy faith in the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob? Where is that confidence in God which you had when you met the prophets of Baal and all other dangers through which you have been called to pass? Is Jezebel greater than your God? Is not the Lord able to deliver thee and to preserve thy life? Why didst thou doubt? Why was not the Lord thy refuge and high tower, wherein is safety? Was he not with thee in the dangers, temptations, persecutions, to deliver thee, in the days and years of thy pilgrimage? Elijah must answer these questions as we do now (in heart), “The fear of man brought a snare;” I had forgotten thy power, thy mercy and the many deliverances in days past. All this fear and doubt is but the fruit of unbelief: in this condition we all are compelled to offer the prayer, “God be merciful to me a sinner.” How precious is our fellowship with Elijah: first in faith, confidence and holy trust in God; afterwards fear, doubt, temptation, trial and bondage to the law of sin which is in our members. The rending of rocks and mountains, the earthquakes and fires distress us because the Lord is not hi them; but they must first appear and pass away without hurt to us, before we hear the “still small voice” which brings peace to the troubled mind, light to the benighted Soul, liberty to the captive and faith to the unbelieving. Then we with Elijah wrap our face in our mantle to hide our shame in departing from the living God. How often we seek refuge in some earthly place or thing, when pressed by danger or trial. O that we might ever look to the Rock from whence cometh our help. Helpless, weak and faint we must ever be receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, though we be often carried away, tossed upon the billows of fear and unbelief. But though we be tossed the promise is, at last we shall be brought to our desired haven, where rest and peace are found.
Written by request of brother Donald McKay, of Scotsville, Nova Scotia.
H. C. KER.
Middletown, N. Y.
Signs Of The Times
Volume 73., No. 15.
AUGUST 1, 1905.