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Sabbath mornings at Ballymacashon – 1 Kings 18:20-21

21/10/2012

Elijah 7 – Indecision!

Text: 1st Kings 18:20-21

 v21. And Elijah came to all the people, and said, “How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” But the people answered him not a word.

1. The Danger of Indecision!

The people are halting between two opinions!  There is indecision. 

There is SYNCRETISTIC INDECISION!  This is the true meaning of this passage.  On the one hand there are the Baals, and on the other there is Jehovah.  You can’t have both, because our God is an EXCLUSIVE GOD.  He demands that his people worship him and no other!  Remember that Elijah was speaking here, to people who were God’s people!  For example, what about those who claim that you can worship both Jehovah and Allah!  (Allah is the god of the Moslems.)  How on earth do they reach that conclusion?

  • By disregarding God’s revealed name! Allah was never the name of God – now that is really important.  When Moses desired to know who God was, at the burning bush, when he wanted to know the character of God, when he wanted to know how he would obey God’s command, what did God do?  HE REVEALED HIS NAME TO MOSES!  Listen to this dialogue in Exodus 3:13-15
  • Allah is the name of a Baal!  Where did this Allah God come from?  Allah was one of the idol gods in the Kabaah in Mecca, the family god of the family of Mohammed.  After a murderous campaign, the god of Mohammed’s family was imposed upon the Arab people.  Allah gained the supremacy, and Islam was born.

Despite all of this, there are clergymen who are still organising joint services with Moslems, doing exactly what Israel was doing in Elijah’s day.  Ecumenical/interfaith indecision kills souls!

 

There is PERSONAL INDECISION. And this is certainly IMPLIED in the passage!  It may be that some individuals are indecisive about the call to worship God alone!  I’m not talking here about people who are openly sceptical about religion or those who are sincere about their faith and are trusting the Lord, but who are plagued from time to time by doubts.  I’m not talking about those who are earnestly seeking the Lord, who are genuine seekers and enquirers, earnestly seeking the way to the Cross.  I am talking here about:-

  • People who are often found among God’s people, yet who do not belong to Him!  To them we say, HOW LONG HALT YE BETWEEN TWO OPINIONS?  If the Lord is God – FOLLOW HIM!
  • People who think they live good lives, yet have never trusted Christ!  There are people who would recoil at the thought of being immoral, who are decent honest church-going people, yet they have never accepted Christ!  But we say to them, with Elijah, HOW LONG HALT YE BETWEEN TWO OPINIONS?  If the Lord is God – FOLLOW HIM!
  • People who try to unite the church and the world and try to serve God and mammon!  Christians who want to keep one foot in the church and one foot in the world!  They are still attracted very deeply by materialism, and they love their increasing riches, and we say to them, with Elijah, HOW LONG HALT YE BETWEEN TWO OPINIONS?  If the Lord is God – FOLLOW HIM!
  • People claim to be Christians but never openly confess Him!  They fear the shame, the reproach of the Cross, they shy away from an open profession of Christianity – we say to them, with Elijah, HOW LONG HALT YE BETWEEN TWO OPINIONS?  If the Lord is God – FOLLOW HIM!

You see, in both these cases, INDECISION IS DANGEROUS!  Are you a Christian who believes that you can harmonize the Lord God with other false Gods?  That all roads lead to heaven?  Are you a church-goer who has never decided for Christ? Then “How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” But the people answered him not a word.  Indecision kills, so If the Lord be God, follow him!

 

2. Elijah’s Appeal to the People of God.

How LONG will this go on?    Now this kind of religious indecision is:-

1)       Distasteful to God!  In fact it is highly offensive to God, because God doesn’t want lukewarm followers – he wants people to follow him who will give him their whole heart.

2)       Dangerous to True Religion!  If you claim that one can worship God and regard some other god with equality, that’s a refuge of lies, and others will believe it, and be caused to stumble.  You will put a terrible obstacle in the way of someone else’s salvation!

3)       Destructive to the Soul!  If you are not fully following the Lord, and Him alone as he demands, you will have no assurance of salvation, no peace of mind, no hope for heaven…

4)       Damaging in its Results! You will be like the tares among the wheat.

Let it not continue!  Do not procrastinate with your soul.  Now thankfully, Elijah gives us the remedy…

 

3. The Path Recommended.

If the Lord be God, follow Him.   Now, if you are being led astray by ecumenical clergymen who are telling you that all roads lead to heaven, but you have come under the sound of God’s Word this evening, that very fact give us great hope!  You cannot surely be one of those who deny the existence of the Creator, and you must surely know of the exclusive demands that he makes upon your life.  There is a very simple remedy to your condition.  Just simply follow the Lord and him alone.

 

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