One of my members asked me to post the message I preached yesterday on my blog, so here is the outline I used.
1 Kings 18:41-46 KJV
41) And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get thee up, eat and drink; for there is a sound of abundance of rain.
42) So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he cast himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees,
43) And said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up, and looked, and said, There is nothing. And he said, Go again seven times.
44) And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man's hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain stop thee not.
45) And it came to pass in the mean while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rode, and went to Jezreel.
46) And the hand of the LORD was on Elijah; and he girded up his loins, and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.
What we learn from the 7 looks?
1. ELIJAH DECLARED THERE WAS RAIN BEFORE THERE WAS RAIN.
Are you believing for what you’re asking for in prayer?
* Isaiah 45:21a – “Declare what is to be, present it…”
* Jesus said in Matthew 21:22 -- If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer."
2. ELIJAH KEPT ASKING… PRAYING…
IT TOOK 7 LOOKS BEFORE THERE WAS A SIGN OF HOPE.
Are you still praying for the miracle or have you given up?
There’s great power in prayer.
* Matthew 7:7 -- "Ask (keep asking) and it will be given to you; seek (keep seeking) and you will find; knock (keep knocking) and the door will be opened to you.
* Luke 18:2-7 -- He said: "In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ’Grant me justice against my adversary.’ "For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ’Even though I don’t fear God or care about men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!’ " And the Lord said, "Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?
3. THE ANSWER TO PRAYER CAN COME FROM A SMALL START.
There was only a cloud the size of a man's hand that could be seen, but Elijah saw it as the beginning of the answer and prepared for an abundance to come.
When you see the small hope… don’t turn from it.
* Zech. 4:10a -- "Who despises the day of small things?
Quote: Matthew Henry: “Great blessings often arise from small beginnings, showers of plenty from a cloud of span long. Let us never despise the day of small things, but hope and wait for great things from it. From what small beginnings have great matters arisen!”
If you have a need and are praying for $1000 and somehow you gain $20, instead of being negative… Praise God for the beginning of the answer!
I wonder how many times the “small cloud” of answer has begun to form and we shunned it and griped and grumbled it away?
4. ELIJAH RAN DIVINELY UNDER GOD’S POWER, about 25 miles, TO OUTRUN AHAB WHO WAS ON HIS CHARIOT.
The Holy Spirit can empower you to run ahead of your enemies
* Exodus 23:27 -- "I will send my terror ahead of you and throw into confusion every nation you encounter. I will make all your enemies turn their backs and run.
Notice he did not say you won’t have enemies.
He did not say that problems won’t come.
But God is willing and waiting to fight our battles and to help you run ahead of the enemy that is chasing you.
What have you given up praying for?
What have you discounted as “small” and insufficient or insignificant?
Let God rise within you the persistency of prayer.
Quote: Billy Graham said, “Heaven is full of answers to prayers for which no one ever bothered to ask."