“Take the helmet of salvation.”
I love the biblical account of the prophet Elijah. Beyond discouragement, the prophet had a major mental and emotional melt down after just experiencing a major victory over the pagan priests on top of Mt. Carmel.
Elijah meets these demonically inspired men and the people who had followed their lies and deception on top of Mt. Carmel. He emphatically challenges them with these words: ‘How long halt ye between two opinions. If the Lord is God, worship Him; if Baal is God, then worship him.” Atypically, the Bible says that the people answered him not back a word.
He continues by challenging them to see which God ….theirs or his, would answer by fire. Of course, Baal loses…..God, as always, wins. The 450 priests of Baal are killed. And the three years of draught which Elijah had declared is on the verge of coming to an end.
But the wicked and evil queen, Jezebel, upon hearing of the demise of her pagan priests, informs Elijah that she is going to kill him now.
Spiritually battle weary, Elijah, having just experienced such victory, comes under the heavy stress of the devil. He runs for his life into the wilderness area of Beersheba. The Bible says that he sits down under a broom tree (not a lot of shade from the heat of the sun), and declares to God, “It’s enough O God, take away my life.” His complaint continued, “I have been zealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. The people of Israel have thrown down your alters, have killed your prophets, and I alone am left. And now they seek my life.”
Elijah is no different than we. He loses hope because he failed to see his circumstances through the eyes of faith. Attempting to fight the battle in his own strength, he was no match to the spiritual challenge before him.
Yet God had not abandoned Elijah. Nor was he the only one left. God was still in control.
For a moment, Elijah had removed his helmet of salvation and had received a near fatal blow to his confidence in the Lord’s blessings upon his life.
Dear church, there will be moments, like Elijah, when confidence dwindles and despair and doubt attempt to take residence in your life. In moments like those, put that helmet of salvation back on your head, take your eyes off your circumstances and trust God’s rich promises. Oh, we may not understand everything that He’s doing, but we can rest in that blessed assurance that He will never leave nor forsake us.