So I post late and get followers.
…well, this is a weird feeling.
(NIV1984) 1 Kings 19:5b-9a – “All at once an angel touched him and said, ‘Get up and eat.’ He looked around, and there by his head was a cake of bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again.
“The angel of the LORD came back a second tie and touched him and said, ‘Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you.’ So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God. There he went into a cave and spent the night.”
So – just a head’s up – tomorrow we will be taking a day break from our study of Elijah and study Mount Horeb for a little bit. I don’t want to go into a ton of description here except to say that it’s super important and deserves its own little day of study. So we’ll get into that then.
For today, we’ll focus on the rest of this passage.
Imagine spending all night cramming and studying for a really, really big final. Or, better, think of finals week, which is really just a week long cramming session. What do you want to do at the end of the week? SLEEP. And that’s basically what Elijah just did – minus the cramming part. He spent the past three years away – either by himself or with the widow and her son – and then came to this event – the competition between God and Baal, which was really God turning the hearts of the people of Israel back to Him. But still, that was a HUGE event. HUGE. And what does Elijah do afterwards? (I mean, after running away?) He goes to sleep. And, yeah, he gets up for food, but then he goes back to sleep again. This is not unsurprising behavior.
Secondly – I like that the angel seems to have woken Elijah up. He “fell asleep” and “All at once an angel touched him” (NIV1984, 1 Kings 19:5)! And that he looked around before finding the food and water jug – those weren’t there before! I imagine Elijah to have been a little groggy, especially since he “lay down again” after eating (NIV1984, 1 Kings 19:6).
It seems kind of like Elijah was hitting the snooze button. The angel tells him to wake up, he does for a little bit, and then he goes back to sleep and the angel comes and wakes him up again.
Now, yes, Elijah was depressed and stressed and that tends to make someone really tired. And if he’s just asked God to kill him, to let him die, maybe this is another plea for that. But I just think that Elijah, at this point in time, is exhausted.
I feel exhausted.
And at this moment, these moments, when he feels “no better than” those who came before him, in his lowest moment, an angel of the LORD appears to him (NIV1984, 1 Kings 19:4). God says that He is still right there with Elijah – and right now all we see commanded is that he get up and eat. Yes, the second time, there’s an acknowledgement that “the journey is too much for you” (NIV1984, 1 Kings 19:7) – that Elijah is exhausted and still has farther to go. And yes, after that second meal, Elijah does travel “forty days and forty nights” to Horeb (NIV1984, 1 Kings 19:8). But there’s this understanding that even in this his lowest point, God is still sending His angels to help him. God doesn’t give up on Elijah, even when Elijah has given up on himself.
Until tomorrow and the study of Mount Horeb! Have a great day, and may God bless you and keep you!