Lessons from a downcast prophet

And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken Thy covenant, thrown down Thine altars, and slain Thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away. 1 Kings 19:10.

The prophet Elijah had just called the Israelites out on their sin of idolatry again. He’d prayed to God and God had answered by fire. He’d watched idolatrous Israel fall on their faces declaring that the LORD, He is the God, and then he’d prayed again, and the heavens gave rain after three and a half years of no rain on earth.

Up till this point, the prophet had thought he was the only prophet of God left in Israel—he believed he was the only one who had not bowed his knees Baal.

This belief coloured even the victory and breakthrough he’d just witnessed.

It was to be a blessed time in Israel—a time to consolidate on the spiritual awakening that had been birthed at Mount Carmel.

But the prophet was believing a perception of the truth that was distorted.

And this perception was very likely from the lenses he was viewing his situation with.

The truth is, the prophet was not alone.

There were seven thousand other people in Israel who had not bowed their knees to Baal.

And there’s a lesson for us here….

Things are not always what they seem. We cannot be too careful about the lenses we view life and living with. Truth is what God has said, and God’s Word is the only true lens.

Because of the prophet’s distorted perception, he was downcast and very easily moved.

So when the queen threatened to kill him as he had killed the prophets of Baal, he ran away from where he was supposed to be—he abandoned his duty post, went into hiding, and threw himself a massive pity party.

…and he requested for himself that he might die, and said, It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. 1 Kings 19:4.

This was the prophet Elijah’s prayer!

The man of faith who prayed and the heavens gave no rain on earth for three and a half years. And then he prayed again and the rains came back.

The prophet who had prayed and God had answered by sending down fire to consume his sacrifice. 

And by foot, he had even outrun King Ahab’s chariot on his way to Jazreel because God’s hand was on him.

Here again is another lesson for us….

When our perceptions are distorted and we believe the untruths they tell, our faith would be so shaken that we become downcast and very easily moved—even leaving where God has us, and going into hiding.

Again, the problem was with the perception of the truth the prophet was believing—because of the lenses he was viewing his situation with.

He just couldn’t see anything else.

Twice, God asked him, “What doest thou here, Elijah”, and twice his response was coloured by his distorted perception, until God said,  “…and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-me-ho’lah shalt thou annoint in thy room”.

Could the prophet Elijah have ended his ministry by his own hand because of the distorted perception he had gained?  I believe so.

His faith was so shaken and he was so downcast that at a time when he would have been leading Israel in the worship of God, he could only run away, have a pity party, and pray to die.

How much could God have done with a prophet in this state?— a prophet that had even fled his duty post.

What doest thou here, Elijah?

Truly, without faith it is impossible to please God.

And here again is another lesson for us….

God would do what He wants to do, whether we walk with Him or not. By our own making we can remove ourselves from God’s purpose for us. It is wisdom to know God’s Word for every situation we are faced with, and in faith, continue in His Word.

What do you believe, and how did you come upon that belief?


…faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. Roman’s 10:17.

God’s Word is the only standard and true lens by which we must view all things. It is the only path to true success.

This book of the law shall not  depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. Joshua 1:8.

Learn from the prophet Elijah.

Consider the perceptions you’ve gained.

Are they causing you to run from where God wants you to be?

Are you, by your own hand, removing yourself from God’s purpose for you?

Remember that faith the size of a mustard seed is enough to move any mountain.

A little faith is all we need for God to move on our behalf.

For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him…. 2 Chronicles 16:9.

Hear the Word of God and don’t ever lose faith.


…the just shall live by his faith. Habakkuk 2:4.

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10 thoughts on “Lessons from a downcast prophet”

  1. Loved this. It is really true that our distorted perception can cause us to want to give up on what God is doing sometimes. As you said, its best to let God’s word guide us instead of how we view a situation.

  2. Oh, I’ve fallen into the ‘I’m the only one” trap multiple times! Sometimes it is so subtle! Thank you for the reminder to reframe things and not let my perceptions get me headed in the wrong direction! Dropping by from Susan’s link up :).

    • Thanks for visiting, Anita. And yes, it’s so easy to fall into this and not realize it. But we must always remember Truth.

      Blessings to you.

  3. Oh, it is so easy to get lost in our own perceptions, isn’t it? But we cannot change our own way of seeing, no matter how hard we try! You are so right, that we need to ask God and go to His Word to let HIM change our perspective and see what He sees. Oh, may I keep my eyes on Him more & more. I am blessed to be your neighbor over at #TeaAndWord.

  4. This is such good insight. It is very important to see with a fresh perspective, easier said than done at times. I am grateful God is patient with us and uses us even though we are not yet made perfect on this side of Heaven. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Yes Meghan, some of these things are easier said than done, but thank God He’s patient with us, and He does not leave us by ourselves to do these things.

      Blessings to you.