Elijah a Prophet of God Make His Prayer to Him
Today, I continue to investigate effective prayer of righteous men of the Lord God. I have observed, in Scriptures, not many righteous men have multiple effective prayers to their credit. However, Elijah the Tishbite a prophet of God is an exception.
Yesterday, we looked at,“I Don’t Understand Why Some People Think Prayer Doesn’t Work”. Today, let’s see what we can unearth from Elijah’s second effective prayer, 1 Kings 18:18 – 40.
The background information leading up to Elijah’s effective prayer is as follows. King Ahab has been searching for Elijah for over three years without success. Now, approaching three and half years of absence Elijah presented himself to King Ahab. Forty-two months earlier Elijah declared to King Ahab, neither rain nor dew would fall in Israel until he declares it. This was Elijah’s effective prayer, and then he disappeared until now.
Subsequently, the country experienced a very severe drought. This resulted in a great famine in the country. Now Elijah presented himself to the king and instructed him, 1 Kings 18:17 – 18. Elijah requested of King Ahab that he convened a national meeting of “all Israel” on Mount Carmel. However, he specifically, requested that all the prophets of Baal and the prophets “of the groves” be present.
King Ahab did not make any objections; he did not hesitate or complained at Elijah’s request. The king may have been thinking, you prayer cause this drought your words can bring rain. Therefore, all the people of Israel congregated on Mount Carmel with King Ahab to hear Elijah speak, 1 Kings 18:20.
In my opinion, this prayer of Elijah may be one of the most popular prayers in the Bible. However, the prophet of God commenced his national address with a thought provoking question. Elijah asked all Israel, “How long halt you between two opinions?” He continued, “If the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him,” 1 Kings 18:21. Nobody answered him “a word”.
Elijah Demonstrates Effective Prayer Always Petition the Lord God
To demonstrate the efficiency and effectiveness of his prayer Elijah proposed an exercise. Certainly, a prayer without an answer from the god one prays to is futile. On the other hand, any prayer that receives a response from your god is an effective prayer.
Elijah’s proposal was simple but efficient. He proposed that the 450 representatives of Baal petition their god. As the sole representative of the Lord God present, 1 Kings 18:22, he would pray to his God also. They agreed the god that responds to their respective prayer with fire is God, 1 Kings 18:24.
To demonstrate effective praying both groups would offer a sacrifice but the god who answers by kindling the fire under the sacrifice is God. Elijah being very confident in the Lord’s ability to respond recommends the 450 make their petition first.
Following the guidelines, the 450 prophets of Baal built an altar and placed their sacrifice on it. The sacrifice was a “bullock” cut in pieces. Then they began to pray and call on Baal from morning until evening to answer by fire but Baal did not answer, 1 Kings 18:26.
At noon, the prophets of Baal were still praying. They prayed, “O Baal hear us,” 1 Kings 18:26. However, Baal did not hear nor answer. Then Elijah mocked them, instructing them to pray louder for Baal “is a god; either he is talking or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey,” or perhaps he is asleep, and “must” awake him, 1 Kings 18:27.
The prophets of Baal got no answer to their prayers. Therefore, they persisted in prayer past noon until the evening but still no answer came to their prayer, 1 Kings 18:28 – 29.
“And it came to pass, when midday was past, and they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded,” 1 Kings 18:29.
Now it was Elijah’s turn to pray to his god, the Lord God. Tomorrow, if the Lord tarries, I shall look at Elijah’s prayer.
Pray to the Lord God and Believe Your Prayer
Many people feel that much praying and loud praying qualify as effective praying. However, the prophets of Baal demonstrated otherwise. I’m neither speaking against praying aloud nor am I speaking against much praying. I’m merely saying those actions by themselves are futile concerning praying effective prayer.
To the contrary, I encourage you to pray “much” and pray aloud or audibly unless you should not. By making audible prayer you hear yourself speak. If you are praying (speaking) the Word of God, hearing yourself births faith in God in you. Believing what you speak as you pray ensures you receive the object of your prayer.
I also encourage you, irrespective of your religion, race, gender, nationality or any other factor, pray to the Lord God through Jesus Christ. Only the Lord God can answer your prayers.
No petition to the Lord is an effective prayer without the name of Jesus. Observe what the prophet Elijah advised the four hundred fifty prophets of Baal to do. He told them, “call on the name of your gods,” 1 Kings 18:24. Every god has a name. Some gods possess multiple names. The name of the Lord God is Jesus Christ. The 450 prophets of Baal “called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon,” but Baal can’t answer because he is a dead god. Baal is only alive in the beliefs and minds of his worshippers.
One of the reasons I know someone with whom I am speaking, is alive is because he responds. If the god you petition for something specific cannot respond to your prayer, he is dead. Pray to the only living God, Jesus Christ. He answered Elijah’s prayer as you will see in tomorrow’s study and He can answer your prayer.
In closing, for your petitions to be effective prayers the following are important. The Lord God must see you as a righteous person because He does not answer sinner’s prayer. Effective prayer is directed to the only living, answering, almighty God, Jesus the Christ. Effective prayer must utilize the name of the Lord God. His name is Jesus Christ.
How will the Lord God answers your prayer?
Our God is a master at multitasking. The Lord is the Almighty God. He is not just a god but He’s the only living God. The Lord God never sleeps. The Lord can speak, answer, “pursue”, “journey” and do much more simultaneously while interacting with humanity. He’s God. Therefore, if you pray and don’t receive a response, check yourself. Ensure when the Lord answers your prayer you don’t miss it. Be constantly watching for His response. His answer in not cast in stone he has no fixed way to answer our prayers therefore, be vigilant constantly scouring the landscape for the Lord’s answer to your effective prayer.
How will the Lord answers your prayer? We never know. He may answer your prayer through a Scripture verse. He may instruct someone to speak His response to you. Your answer may come as a dream these are all scriptural. However, the Lord God answers you make sure you are aware of the Lord’s response. Amen!