Prophet Elijah once ran away from Israel’s King Ahab and his wicked wife Jezebel, who had wanted to kill him. During that time, Ahab and Jezebel plunged Israel into idol worship.
After a few years, Elijah was instructed by God to go back to Israel and present himself to King Ahab. When he got there, he asked Ahab to assemble the prophets of Ba’al, their false god, and Asherah, the fertility goddess.
Now summon the people from all over Israel to meet me on Mount Carmel. And bring the four hundred and fifty prophets of Ba’al and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who eat at Jezebel’s table.” 1 Kings 18:19
Elijah then appealed to the people of Israel to turn away from false gods. When the people failed to reply, he said:
I am the only one of the Lord’s prophets left, but Ba’al has four hundred and fifty prophets. Get two bulls for us. Let Ba’al’s prophets choose one for themselves, and let them cut it into pieces and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. I will prepare the other bull and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the Lord. The god who answers by fire — he is God.” 1 Kings 18:22-24
Then they prepared their sacrifice and prayed to their gods to make fire burn their sacrifice. They did that for several hours, from morning till noon, but their gods didn’t answer.
Elijah started to mock them and told them to shout to their gods in case they were sleeping. After doing all they could, their gods still didn’t answer.
When it came to Elijah’s turn, he built an altar, cut the bull into pieces, set it on the altar together with wood and asked for four jars of water to be poured on it three times. Then he prayed:
Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you,Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.” 1 Kings 18:36,37
God answered by raining down fire from heaven on Elijah’s sacrifice, consuming it in flames. At that, the people said: “The Lord — he is God! The Lord — he is God!”
It wasn’t easy for Elijah to return to Israel and stand before King Ahab and Jezebel, whom he knew wanted him dead. It was even more difficult to then issue a challenge to their beliefs and to mock them in public. But Elijah did these things because he had supreme faith, courage and confidence in the Lord.
The fear he felt when God first commanded him to go back, he overcame it by putting all his trust in God. To the point that when he stood before the people of Israel and asked God to ignite his sacrifice, he didn’t doubt for a second that God would do just that.
Do you have that kind of faith, courage and confidence in the Lord? Granted, it would be much easier to if God were still in the business of shooting beams of fire from the sky to prove His existence. But the miracles He still performs are no less grand and no less obvious to those with eyes to see.
When you pray to God for the things you need and when you go into the world to preach the gospel, do so with supreme faith, courage and confidence in the Lord, and He will certainly do something to prove to you and to the world that He exists.