Elijah came near to all the people and said, 'How long you hesitate between two opinions? If the is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.' But the people did not answer him a word." 1 Kings 18:21
We are all, no doubt, familiar with the famous scene of Elijah, the prophet of God, confronting the 450 pagan prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel. Wicked king Ahab had married infamous Jezebel who not only brought her pagan religion into Israel but killed all but one hundred of God's prophets. This systematic introduction of Baal worship, clearly supported by her husband the king, put all of the people of Israel in a position to have to make a choice: worship the One True God, worship a pagan diety or straddle the fence.
Beloved, we are faced with the same decision today. We know God. Many of us have known Him from our earliest years being taught through bible stories, children's prayers and our parents' example. Along the way, however, we have also been introduced to the god of this world. Whether it is the worship of money and the things it can buy, the lust of the eye and the flesh which is so predominant throughout society or the rejection of God through action or inaction, we all have a choice. In Jezebel's day, not only was godlessness sanctioned by the ruling authority, it became societally imperative. Sound familiar?
The question asked by Elijah, therefore, is still asked today: "How long will you hesitate between two opinions?" Then, the people failed to respond as if unsure of what to say, unwilling to verbally express the choice their lives demonstrated they had chosen or silenced by guilt. As Christians, we must constantly examine our lives to determine who our actions serve. Joshua famously put it this way: "If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the , choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the ” Joshua 24:15.
It is my fervent prayer that in the face of ever increasing external and, yes, internal negative influences that "the redeemed of the Lord say so." Let us all stand up and be counted for God, good and righteousness. Let us serve the Lord.
Increasing in faith,