One of my favorite books of the Bible is 1 Kings. Not so long ago I was led to make a Bible study for the book and it was a great journey through God’s Word. We are introduced to Elijah in 1 Kings and we see a lot unfold. From the moment he is on the scene, we are not provided much of an introduction into his life, but we slowly see this picture of Elijah revealed through the drought, the time with the widow, and the magnificent display by God at Mount Carmel.
Now Ahab describes Elijah differently than most of us would. He called him a “troublemaker.” A troublemaker. Most of us would not call Elijah a troublemaker. He was following God’s commands. He was anything but a troublemaker. But to Ahab he was a troublemaker because Ahab was not following God’s commands. What Elijah was doing was causing trouble for Ahab and his evil ways.
In the same way, people might see Christians as troublemakers. We stand firm and uphold the Word of God but that goes against what society desires. The world wants what the world wants. So you might be called a “troublemaker.” Just remember that there are two types of troublemakers. There are troublemakers who are simply standing firm on God’s Word so they appear as the disorder amidst the world. Then there are the troublemakers who are against God’s Word and are living a life filled with evil. Ahab saw Elijah as a troublemaker. We see Ahab as a troublemaker. The difference is—one is following God’s Word and the other is not. Where do you fall?
“When Ahab saw him, he exclaimed, ‘So, is it really you, you troublemaker of Israel?’” – 1 Kings 18:17 [NLT]
It is always interesting to find something contained in parentheses in a book, especially the Bible. Parentheses are used to clarify something—to make something clear. First Kings 18:3 says that “Obadiah was a devoted follower of the Lord,” and this is contained in parentheses (NLT). That is a great statement made about Obadiah and it was felt necessary to include for a reason.
Obadiah hid a hundred prophets. In 1 Kings 18:12, he says, “Yet I have been a true servant of the LORD all my life” (NLT). As we read 1 Kings, we cannot help but see these words within the parentheses – Obadiah was a DEVOTED follower of the Lord. Devoted. What a wonderful description of a person.
Today consider one line that would describe you. Could it be said that you are a devoted follower of the Lord? Could it even be known that you are a follower of Christ? What would your parentheses say?
“So Ahab summoned Obadiah, who was in charge of the palace. (Obadiah was a devoted follower of the LORD.” – 1 Kings 18:3 [NLT]