Well, if you don’t know me, my name is Keith and I’m one of the leaders around our church. I was part of the team that started Riverside 11 years ago, and I’ve personally been so blessed in terms of how Riverside has helped me grow as a follower of Jesus.
There have been so many ways that Riversiders have spoken into me and helped form me to become more like Jesus, and for that I’m thankful!
With that said, today we have two passages. The first passage 1 Kings 16: 29-33 quickly talks about one of the worst kings of Israel. It’s a short passage but a really sad one.
Thankfully, two chapters later in 1 Kings 18:16-46 we then read about one of the most courageous stands by one of God’s prophets. The bad king is still on the scene but the prophet of God stands firm and calls people to make a decision in terms of where their ultimate allegiance will be.
As you read these two passages, really try to picture both scenes.
Place yourself in the first passage, and imagine how hard it would have been to stay faithful to God in the midst of such wicked leadership. In the second passage, really try and picture yourself as one of the bystanders. Try to immerse yourself into the event.
And ultimately, this season of Christmas calls us to reflect on the King of the universe that is PRESENT and among His people. Just like the all consuming fire came down from heaven in the time of Elijah, Jesus also came down from heaven in a spectacular (yet unexpected) way.
After you have read both passages, then reflect upon the following questions:
- Which characters in each of the accounts are you most like?
- God is still asking us the same question laid out in 2 Kings 18:21. What are the different ways that you waver in your allegiance these days?
- What does today’s passages reveal about God?
- Have you recently experienced Jesus and His Incarnation (His active presence in our world and lives) to the same extent that Elijah experienced the fire of God? If “yes,” spend some time thanking God. If “no,” pray for more awareness of His activity in your life.