1 Kings 17-19…Half-hearted commitment.
In these chapters we see false prophets who brought paganism to the ancient Israelites and gave false comfort to the royal court. This sparked a confrontation involving Elijah on Mount Carmel. There, before the people of Israel, Elijah called the nation to choose whom it would serve: the Lord or Baal. It was not possible for them to serve both or to be double-minded. Of course, this is a theme that appears throughout the prophets and, indeed, the rest of the Bible. God is not interested in half-hearted commitment. He will either have our hearts in their entirety, or He will have nothing to do with us at all (Josh. 24:15; Ps. 119:113; Matt. 6:24; John 14:6).
From a human perspective, Elijah did not have the upper hand. He was outnumbered by the false prophets of Baal. However, that did not stop him from confronting them. We are familiar with the account of each side building an altar to its deity and calling down fire from heaven to prove which one was the true God. Elijah did everything possible to prove that Yahweh was God; he even soaked the sacrifices and built a moat so that only a powerful fire from heaven could consume the offering. That consuming fire is exactly what came for his sacrifice. Grounded in the Word of the Lord and trusting fully in His power, Elijah stood down a powerful enemy and testified to divine truth.
Ultimately, God only demands one thing—our full commitment to Him. We were made for our Creator, and He will not share us with another. He will not have us as His if we try to divide our ultimate allegiance between Him and anything else. In Elijah’s day, many in Israel tried to serve God and someone else on the side. We are ever tempted to do the same. Let us remember the One for whom we were made that we might realize that we can be satisfied in Him alone.