Applications from 1 Kings
If you read the last post, The truth hurts, please skip ahead to the application.
The part of the story read here gives three good thoughts. We left Elijah last time waiting for Obadiah to bring Ahab. We pick up here with Ahab and Elijah meeting for the first time since Elijah announced that God would stop the rain. Ahab immediately blames Elijah for Israel’s trouble. Elijah quickly reminds Ahab that the trouble comes from Baal
worship. Elijah tells Ahab to gather Israel and the false prophets for a meeting
at Mt. Carmel. Once there Elijah asks the people how long they will halt between
two opinions. He challenges them to either serve God or Baal.
“You can’t straddle the fence” has become our modern way to say what Elijah said, “How long halt ye between two opinions?” Ahab was proving that one cannot serve Baal and God.
Elijah calls on the people to stop this and choose one or the other. Try to picture what Elijah was saying to these people… One author puts it this way: “How long will you keep on dancing from one leg to the other, like a bird trying to straddle a widening branch or a man trying to take both forks of a road at the same time?” In other words, “How long will you try to worship both Yahweh and Baal at the same time?” The statement is clearly a metaphor to condemn halfhearted, double-minded indecision.
For you and I things are the same. We cannot have one foot in the world and one with God. We must choose to fully serve God and allow Him to be Lord. “If He is not Lord of all…He is not Lord at all.”
You can’t straddle the fence.
Do you see the correlation between the three applications in this text? I don’t want to face the truth… So I put the blame on someone else… But I want the benefit of the right and the wrong so am I not going to leave either. This mentality simply doesn’t work. You cannot serve God and ______. It will lead to dryness in your life just like the drought in Israel.
Pastor Chanc Strickland
Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN
This blog post was adapted from a sermon preached at Harpeth Baptist Church in the summer of 2012.