“Times of Frailty” 1 Kings 19:1-4
Heroes The Bible doesn’t sugarcoat the truth about great men and women. We are told the good news and the bad news.
Heroes • Noah built an ark….and got drunk • Abraham had great faith…but lied twice to save himself • Moses parts the Red Sea….but murders Egyptians • David defeats Goliath…but commits adultery and murder • Peter walks on water…but denies knowing Jesus three times
I Kings 19: 1-4 • This is a story of Elijah’s battle with discouragement, despondency and depression…and ultimately God’s provisions for him.
Thrill of Victory – Agony of Defeat • Elijah defeats the 450 prophets of Baal and the 400 prophets of Asherah. People bow down and acknowledge “The Lord, He is God.” • Instead of rejoicing – Elijah ends up hundreds of miles away hidden in a cave. • Elijah appears despondent perhaps even suffering from depression. He prays that God would take his life. • 9.5% of all adults are diagnosed with some form of clinical depression. One out of every 4 women suffers some form of depression at some point.
Depression Affects All Types of People • “To remain as I am is impossible. I must die to be better.” Abraham Lincoln • Charles Spurgeon admitted his struggle with depression in a chapter entitled, The Minister’s Fainting Fits: • “The strong are not always vigorous, the wise not always ready, the brave not always courageous, and the joyous not always happy.” Spurgeon
Elijah’s Condition • He was gripped by fear and doubt v.3 • He reacted impulsively • He wanted to be alone v.3 • He allowed himself to be controlled by dark thoughts
QUESTION: Can you think of anyone in the New Testament who temporarily lost his faith and his bearings?
John the Baptist • When John saw Jesus approaching he states, “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.” • Herod ultimately puts John in prison • While in prison he sends his disciples to Jesus to ask, “Are you the one who was to come or should we expect another?” • A few verses later Jesus praises John and compares him to Elijah (Matt. 11:14) • Yet both men struggled with times of doubt and depression.
His Condition Diagnosed – Roots of Despair and Depression • He was overstrained mentally • He was exhausted physically • He was discouraged • He was out of touch with people and with God… loneliness.
The Responses of Despair and Depression v. 3-4 • Desire for Escape v.3a • Desire for Solitude v.3b • Desire for Death v.4a • Desire for Self Pity v. 4b
Handling Doubts, Despair and Depression • Admit your doubts and/or depression and ask for help…begin by asking God, but don’t be afraid to ask others. • Keep walking. • Keep going back to the things you know are true.
Romans 8:38-39 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
II Timothy 1:12 I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.
A Handful of Convictions You Can Hold To • God is Good • Life is Short • Every Day is a Gift • Fame is Fleeting • This World is Not My Home • God uses Hard Times for My Benefit • God is Sovereign – Over all the Details of my life. He is God and I am Not! • I can Trust Him Completely
Stay Tuned – Next Week Four Things Elijah Receives from the Lord