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November 7, 2021 – A Word to the Fearful – Twenty-fourth Sunday after Pentecost (or All Saints Sunday)

1 Kings 19:1-18           Elijah at Horeb; The prophet in despair, God speaks in the silence.

Elijah is responding to Ahab and Jezebel’s words in this passage. He responds with fear, by running away.  While he’s running, he rests, and an angel of the Lord plants him firmly in the middle of a Snickers commercial. After eating, Elijah has the strength for 40 days though the wilderness to Horeb.

When he gets to Horeb, a word from God comes directly to Elijah, “What are you doing here?” Elijah has an answer. Elijah has worked hard, and faithfully for God, and the people of Israel haven’t, and they’ve even come after Elijah and others with violence. Essentially, Elijah has worked hard and faithfully, and he’s done dealing with God’s people. (I get it.) God doesn’t respond to this complaint with words, but with a demonstration of powers that God is not in. In the silence afterwards, God asks the question again. And Elijah answers the exact same way, as though to make sure God hears it. And God responds by sending Elijah back again to be faithful.

God’s word is that God is not done yet, and that Elijah has work yet to do. God’s word is that all the things that scare us, that threaten us, that destroy us, do not have God in them. It is probably an important word to us today. Notice that God doesn’t argue with Elijah about what Elijah has done or what the people of Israel have done. God hears, God listens, God responds, God goes to, and God goes with.

What word from God and from God’s people do we need to hear when we’re fearful?

Worship at First Presbyterian Church of Marion, Illinois
Worship at First Presbyterian Church of Marion, Illinois
November 7, 2021 - A Word to the Fearful - Twenty-fourth Sunday after Pentecost (or All Saints Sunday)
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