The Worst King, the Greatest Prophet and the Living God

 

The Bible tells the stories of some fascinating characters.

 

Some were heroes – men and women of faith, whom God used to perform extraordinary miracles, deliver life-changing messages and alter the course of history.

 

Others were villains – who persecuted God’s people, seeking to wipe them out or turn them away from him; people whose concerns were selfish and who had no reverence or respect for God and his purposes.

 

And many fell somewhere between these two extremes.

 

1 Kings 16:29 – 2 Kings 2:12 tells us the story of two men from opposite ends of this spectrum. Ahab was the worst king that Israel had ever known (1 Kings 16:30, 33; 21:25-26). He led the people of Israel into Idolatry, making the worship of Baal the state religion. He also allowed his foreign wife, Jezebel, to execute God’s prophets and persecute those who were faithful to the Lord.

 

At this time God raised up the prophet, Elijah, as his mouthpiece, to address this terrible evil. But Elijah’s significance stretched way beyond the end of his initial ministry in Israel. He was transported to heaven while he was still alive (2 Kings 2:) and his return was prophesied in the final verses of the Old Testament (Malachi 4:5-6); a prophecy that was fulfilled through the ministry of John the Baptist (Matthew 11:12-14). He also appeared with Moses to talk with Jesus on the Mountain of Transfiguration (Mark 9:2-4), and he went down in Israel’s history as perhaps the most significant prophet who had ever lived.

 

Yet as the story of these two men unfolds, the most striking character is the living God himself. He is patient, gracious, merciful and just and his Word is irrefutable. When he speaks rain is withheld, food is multiplied, miracles take place, battles are won, dynasties are removed, judgement is passed and mercy is granted. Whatever else may happen, one thing is sure: Whilst things may sometimes seem bleak, God’s purposes will always be fulfilled.

 

 

 

 

Date Title  Passage  Speaker Sermon 
09/10/16 Introduction 1 Kings 16:29-17:6 Ste McLean
16/10/16 God's provision: Are you rich or poor? 1 Kings 17 Ste McLean
23/10/16 What sort of God do you serve? 1 Kings 18 Ste McLean
30/10/16 Hope out of despair 1 Kings 19 Jack Hedger
13/11/16 God's way is always the best way 1 Kings 20 Ste McLean
20/11/16 The God of justice and mercy 1 Kings 21 Ste McLean
27/11/16 God's Word will come to pass 1 Kings 22:1-44 Ste McLean
11/12/16 Obedience is already success 1 Kings 22:51 - 2 Kings 1:18 Ste McLean
18/12/16 God is salvation 2 Kings 2:1-18 Ste McLean