28 Old Testament After the Fire a Still Small Voice

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Lesson 28: “After the Fire a Still Small Voice”, Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Teacher’s Manual, 134; 1 Kings 17-19

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  • Lesson 28: “After the Fire a Still Small Voice”, Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Teacher’s Manual, 1341 Kings 17–19CHAPTER 17 Elijah seals the heavens, and is fed by the ravens—At his command the barrel of meal and the cruse of oil of the widow of Zarephath fail not—He raises her son from death. CHAPTER 18 Elijah is sent to meet Ahab—Obadiah saves a hundred prophets, and meets Elijah—Elijah challenges the prophets of Baal to call down fire from heaven—They fail—He calls down fire, slays the prophets of Baal, and opens the heavens for rain. CHAPTER 19 Jezebel seeks the life of Elijah—An angel sends him to Horeb—The Lord speaks to Elijah, not in the wind, nor the earthquake, nor the fire, but in a still small voice—Elisha joins Elijah.
  • 1 Kings 17–19Purpose To encourage class members to put God first in their lives and to find guidance and comfort in the words of the living prophet and the whisperings of the Holy Ghost. story told by Elder Thomas S. Monson: “Born in poverty but nurtured in faith, [José García] prepared for a mission call. I was present the day his recommendation was received. There appeared the statement: ‘Brother García will serve at great sacrifice to his family, for he is the means of much of the family support. He has but one possession—a treasured stamp collection—which he is willing to sell, if necessary, to help finance his mission.’ “President [Spencer W.] Kimball listened attentively as this statement was read to him, and then he responded: ‘Have him sell his stamp collection. Such sacrifice will be to him a blessing.’ ” ****Think about how YOU would react if YOU were asked to give up all YOUR possessions to serve the Lord*** Story continues: “Then, with a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face, this loving prophet said, ‘Each month at Church headquarters we receive thousands of letters from all parts of the world. See that we save these stamps and provide them to José at the conclusion of his mission. He will have, without cost, the finest stamp collection of any young man in Mexico’ ” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1978, 83; or Ensign, Nov. 1978, 56). When we put the things of God first in our lives, the rewards we receive are far greater than anything we may have to sacrifice along the way. This lesson tells about two people—Elijah and the widow of Zarephath—who received great blessings because they were willing to follow God even when it was difficult to do so.
  • After Jeroboam led the kingdom of Israel into idolatry, he and his descendants were destroyed. They were followed by another succession of idolatrous kings. Of those rulers, Ahab was the king who “did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel that were before him” (1 Kings 16:33). He married Jezebel, adopted her practice of Baal worship, and encouraged his people to join him in the worship of this false god. The prophet Elijah delivered words of warning to Ahab and his kingdom. • Because of the wickedness of Ahab and his people, Elijah declared, “There shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word” (1 Kings 17:1; italics added). Why was Elijah able to make such a statement? (Compare Elijah to Nephi, the son of Helaman, who was given a similar power. The Lord’s reasons for allowing all things to be done according to Nephi’s words are found in Helaman 10:4–5: “4 Blessed art thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done; for I have beheld how thou hast with unwearyingness declared the word, which I have given unto thee, unto this people. And thou hast not feared them, and hast not sought thine own life, but hast sought my will, and to keep my commandments.   5 And now, because thou hast done this with such unwearyingness, behold, I will bless thee forever; and I will make thee mighty in word and in deed, in faith and in works; yea, even that all things shall be done unto thee according to thy word, for thou shalt not ask that which is contrary to my will.“• After Elijah declared that no rain would fall in the kingdom, the Lord commanded him to flee. How did Elijah respond to the Lord’s command? (See 1 Kings 17:2–5): “2 And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying,   3 Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan.   4 And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.   5 So he went and did according unto the word of the Lord: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. “What can we learn from Elijah’s response? Elder Gordon B. Hinckley said: “I draw strength from a simple statement made concerning the Prophet Elijah, who warned King Ahab of drought and famine to come upon the land. But Ahab scoffed. And the Lord told Elijah to go and hide himself by the brook Cherith, that there he should drink of the brook, and that he would be fed by the ravens. And the scripture records a simple and wonderful statement: ‘So he went and did according unto the word of the Lord.’ (1 Kings 17:5.) “There was no arguing. There was no excusing. There was no equivocating. Elijah simply ‘went and did according unto the word of the Lord.’ And he was saved from the terrible calamities that befell those who scoffed and argued and questioned” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1971, 159; or Ensign, Dec. 1971, 123–24).
  • • How did Elijah survive in the wilderness after the drought began? (See 1 Kings 17:4, 6.) 4 And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there. 6 And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook. *What experiences have you had when the Lord has sustained you physically or spiritually? • Whom had the Lord prepared to help Elijah after the brook in the wilderness dried up? (See 1 Kings 17:7–13.) 7 And it came to pass after a while, that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land.    8 ¶ And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying,    9 Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee.    10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.    11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand.    12 And she said, As the Lord thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.    13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. *What can this teach us about how the Lord helps those in need? (…That the Lord often helps those in need through the service of other people.) *How have you seen the Lord help those in need through the service of other people?
  • *What can we do to help others who are in need?Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said: “I know we can each do something, however small that act may seem to be. We can pay an honest tithe and give our fast and freewill offerings. … And we can watch for other ways to help. To worthy causes and needy people, we can give time if we don’t have money, and we can give love when our time runs out. We can share the loaves we have and trust God that the cruse of oil will not fail” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1996, 41; or Ensign, May 1996, 31).
  • • How did the widow respond to Elijah’s request for some water to drink? (See 1 Kings 17:10–11. She went without hesitation.)10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.   11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand. *What did the widow say when Elijah asked her for food? (See 1 Kings 17:11–12.) 11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand.   12 And she said, As the Lord thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die. *What did Elijah promise her? (See 1 Kings 17:13–14.) 13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son.   14 For thus saith the Lord God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the Lord sendeth rain upon the earth.
  • *What did the widow then do? (See 1 Kings 17:15.) 15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. *What can we learn from the widow’s response? Elder Holland said that the widow’s response when Elijah asked her for food was an “expression of faith—as great, under these circumstances, as any I know in the scriptures. … Perhaps uncertain what the cost of her faith would be … , she first took her small loaf to Elijah, obviously trusting that if there were not enough bread left over, at least she and her son would have died in an act of pure charity” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1996, 39; or Ensign, May 1996, 29).
  • • Why do you think God commanded the widow to feed Elijah when she had so little? What blessing did the widow receive for her obedience? (See 1 Kings 17:16.) 16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord, which he spake by Elijah.*What are some things that God asks of us that might be difficult? *In what ways are we blessed when we put God first, doing what he asks even when it is difficult? President Ezra Taft Benson taught: “When we put God first, all other things fall into their proper place or drop out of our lives. Our love of the Lord will govern the claims for our affection, the demands on our time, the interests we pursue, and the order of our priorities. …  “May God bless us to put [him] first and, as a result, reap peace in this life and eternal life with a fulness of joy in the life to come” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1988, 3, 6; or Ensign, May 1988, 4, 6).
  • • What did Elijah do when the widow’s son became sick and died? (See 1 Kings 17:17–22.) 17 ¶ And it came to pass after these things, that the son of the woman, the mistress of the house, fell sick; and his sickness was so sore, that there was no breath left in him.   18 And she said unto Elijah, What have I to do with thee, O thou man of God? art thou come unto me to call my sin to remembrance, and to slay my son?   19 And he said unto her, Give me thy son. And he took him out of her bosom, and carried him up into a loft, where he abode, and laid him upon his own bed.   20 And he cried unto the Lord, and said, O Lord my God, hast thou also brought evil upon the widow with whom I sojourn, by slaying her son?   21 And he stretched himself upon the child three times, and cried unto the Lord, and said, O Lord my God, I pray thee, let this child’s soul come into him again.   22 And the Lord heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived. *By what power was Elijah able to bring the widow’s son back to life? 1. Elijah seals up the heavens, is miraculously sustained, and raises a widow’s son from the dead – through the Melchizedek Priesthood.*How has your life been blessed through the power of the priesthood?
  • 2. Elijah challenges the priests of Baal and opens the heavens for rain. Teach and discuss 1 Kings 18. • In the third year of the famine, the Lord commanded Elijah, “Go [show] thyself to Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth” (1 Kings 18:1). *How did Ahab react when he saw Elijah? (See 1 Kings 18:17. Point out that Ahab blamed Elijah for the famine.)    17 ¶ And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel? *What was the real cause of the famine? (See 1 Kings 18:18.) 18 And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father’s house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim. • As Elijah had requested, Ahab gathered all of Israel and 850 false priests at Mount Carmel (1 Kings 18:19–20). 19 Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel unto mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the groves four hundred, which eat at Jezebel’s table.    20 So Ahab sent unto all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together unto mount Carmel. *When the people gathered to hear Elijah speak, he asked them, “How long halt ye between two opinions?” (1 Kings 18:21).   21 And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word. *What do you think it means to halt between two opinions?
  • How do we sometimes halt between two opinions? (See Matthew 6:24. Point out that the word mammon refers to worldliness.) 24 ¶ No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Elder Neal A. Maxwell said: “The stirring words of various prophets … urge us to choose, to decide, and not to halt. … Elijah’s message has tremendous relevancy today, for all must finally choose between the gods of this world and the God of eternity” (That My Family Should Partake [1974], 22).
  • Elijah’s confrontation with the priests of Baal (1 Kings 18:17–40).17 ¶ And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel?   18 And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father’s house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim.   19 Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel unto mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the groves four hundred, which eat at Jezebel’s table.   20 So Ahab sent unto all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together unto mount Carmel.   21 And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.   22 Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the Lord; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men.   23 Let them therefore give us two bullocks; and let them choose one bullock for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: and I will dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under:   24 And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the Lord: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.   25 And Elijah said unto the prophets of Baal, Choose you one bullock for yourselves, and dress it first; for ye are many; and call on the name of your gods, but put no fire under.   26 And they took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made.   27 And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud: for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth, and must be awaked.   28 And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them.   29 And it came to pass, when midday was past, and they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded.   30 And Elijah said unto all the people, Come near unto me. And all the people came near unto him. And he repaired the altar of the Lord that was broken down.   31 And Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, unto whom the word of the Lord came, saying, Israel shall be thy name:   32 And with the stones he built an altar in the name of the Lord: and he made a trench about the altar, as great as would contain two measures of seed.   33 And he put the wood in order, and cut the bullock in pieces, and laid him on the wood, and said, Fill four barrels with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice, and on the wood.   34 And he said, Do it the second time. And they did it the second time. And he said, Do it the third time. And they did it the third time.   35 And the water ran round about the altar; and he filled the trench also with water.   • What was Elijah’s purpose in challenging the priests of Baal? (See 1 Kings 18:36–37.) 36 And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.   37 Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the Lord God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again. *How did the people react to the Lord’s display of power? (See 1 Kings 18:38–39.)   38 Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.   39 And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, he is the God; the Lord, he is the God.   40 And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there. *How were they blessed for acknowledging the Lord and his power? (See 1 Kings 18:45.)   45 And it came to pass in the mean while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rode, and went to Jezreel. *How can we more fully acknowledge the Lord and his power? =See 1 Thessalonians 5:16–18; 16 Rejoice evermore.   17 Pray without ceasing.   18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. +Alma 34:38; 38 That ye contend no more against the Holy Ghost, but that ye receive it, and take upon you the name of Christ; that ye humble yourselves even to the dust, and worship God, in whatsoever place ye may be in, in spirit and in truth; and that ye live in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you. +Moroni 7:33–39: 33 And Christ hath said: If ye will have faith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me.   34 And he hath said: Repent all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me, and be baptized in my name, and have faith in me, that ye may be saved.   35 And now, my beloved brethren, if this be the case that these things are true which I have spoken unto you, and God will show unto you, with power and great glory at the last day, that they are true, and if they are true has the day of miracles ceased?   36 Or have angels ceased to appear unto the children of men? Or has he withheld the power of the Holy Ghost from them? Or will he, so long as time shall last, or the earth shall stand, or there shall be one man upon the face thereof to be saved?   37 Behold I say unto you, Nay; for it is by faith that miracles are wrought; and it is by faith that angels appear and minister unto men; wherefore, if these things have ceased wo be unto the children of men, for it is because of unbelief, and all is vain.   38 For no man can be saved, according to the words of Christ, save they shall have faith in his name; wherefore, if these things have ceased, then has faith ceased also; and awful is the state of man, for they are as though there had been no redemption made.   39 But behold, my beloved brethren, I judge better things of you, for I judge that ye have faith in Christ because of your meekness; for if ye have not faith in him then ye are not fit to be numbered among the people of his church.
  • Angry about Elijah’s victory over the priests of Baal, Jezebel sought to kill him. Elijah fled into the wilderness and cried to the Lord, saying, “It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life” (1 Kings 19:4). The Lord blessed Elijah by sending an angel with food and water. Note that EVEN prophets can experience despair and need the comfort and guidance that only God can provide. • Why was Elijah discouraged? (See 1 Kings 19:10, 14. Despite the people’s response to God’s spectacular display of power, Elijah felt that he was the only Israelite left who worshiped the true God.)   10 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. 14 And he said, I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: because 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. *What did he do to gain peace? (See 1 Kings 19:4, 8. He prayed and fasted.) 4 ¶ But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: 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. 8 And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God. *What can we learn from Elijah’s experience to help us if we feel discouraged, depressed, or despairing?
  • • How did God comfort Elijah on Mount Horeb? (See 1 Kings 19:9–13.) 9 ¶ And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah?   10 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.   11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake:   12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.   13 And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah? *What can we learn from this about how God communicates with us?
  • *Why do you think God communicates more often through the “still small voice” of the Holy Ghost than through loud and spectacular displays of power? *How can we discern the whisperings of the Holy Ghost? When a news reporter asked President Hinckley how he communicates with God, the prophet responded, “I think the best way I could describe the process is to liken it to the experience of Elijah as set forth in the book of First Kings. Elijah spoke to the Lord, and there was a wind, a great wind, and the Lord was not in the wind. And there was an earthquake, and the Lord was not in the earthquake. And there was a fire, and the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire a still, small voice, which I describe as the whisperings of the Spirit” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1996, 71; or Ensign, Nov. 1996, 51).
  • *How can we discern the whisperings of the Holy Ghost? President Ezra Taft Benson taught: “Do you take time to listen to the promptings of the Spirit? Answers to prayer come most often by a still voice and are discerned by our deepest, innermost feelings. I tell you that you can know the will of God concerning yourselves if you will take the time to pray and to listen” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1977, 46; or Ensign, Nov. 1977, 32).• Besides being the Comforter, the Holy Ghost is also a teacher =seeJohn 14:26; 26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. +2 Nephi 32:5:5 For behold, again I say unto you that if ye will enter in by the way, and receive the Holy Ghost, it will show unto you all things what ye should do. *What did the Lord—through the Holy Ghost—instruct Elijah to do? (See 1 Kings 19:15–16.) 15 And the Lord said unto him, Go, return on thy way to the wilderness of Damascus: and when thou comest, anoint Hazael to be king over Syria:   16 And Jehu the son of Nimshishalt thou anoint to be king over Israel: and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholahshalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room. *How can serving the Lord help us when we are discouraged? • One way the Lord comforted Elijah was by telling him that there were still many Israelites who had not adopted the worship of Baal (1 Kings 19:18). 18 Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him. *How can fellowship with other faithful Latter-day Saints comfort us? *What influences do you have around you that help you know you are not alone? *What can you do to help others when they feel alone?
  • Conclusion Testify that we will be comforted and guided as we put God first and heed the whisperings of the Holy Ghost.
  • Joseph Smith said: “The spirit, power, and calling of Elijah is, that ye have power to hold the key of the revelations, ordinances, oracles, powers and endowments of the fulness of the Melchizedek Priesthood and of the kingdom of God on the earth; and to receive, obtain, and perform all the ordinances belonging to the kingdom of God, even unto the turning of the hearts of the fathers unto the children, and the hearts of the children unto the fathers, even those who are in heaven. …  “I wish you to understand this subject, for it is important; and if you receive it, this is the spirit of Elijah, that we redeem our dead, and connect ourselves with our fathers which are in heaven, and seal up our dead to come forth in the first resurrection; and here we want the power of Elijah to seal those who dwell on earth to those who dwell in heaven. This is the power of Elijah and the keys of the kingdom of Jehovah” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith [1976], 337–38).
  • The Spirit of Elijah Latter-day Saints often talk about the Spirit of Elijah. This phrase refers to the work we do “to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers” (D&C 110:15). This work includes family history research and temple work for the living and the dead. We call it the Spirit of Elijah because Elijah restored the keys of the sealing power of the priesthood to Joseph Smith (D&C 110:13–16). 13 After this vision had closed, another great and glorious vision burst upon us; for Elijah the prophet, who was taken to heaven without tasting death, stood before us, and said:   14 Behold, the time has fully come, which was spoken of by the mouth of Malachi—testifying that he [Elijah] should be sent, before the great and dreadful day of the Lord come—   15 To turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers, lest the whole earth be smitten with a curse—   16 Therefore, the keys of this dispensation are committed into your hands; and by this ye may know that the great and dreadful day of the Lord is near, even at the doors. Through this power, sealing ordinances can be performed that unite families for eternity. THUS, we will be Comforted and Guided as we put God First and Heed the Whisperings of the Holy Ghost AND respond to the SPIRIT OF ELIJAH!
  • 28 Old Testament After the Fire a Still Small Voice

    1. 1. “After the Fire a Still Small Voice”<br />1 Kings 17–19 <br />Lesson 28: “After the Fire a Still Small Voice”, Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Teacher’s Manual, 134<br />
    2. 2. Put God First by finding Guidance and Comfort in the Words of the Living Prophet and the Whisperings of the Holy Ghost.<br />
    3. 3. “I draw strength from a simple statement made concerning the Prophet Elijah, who warned King Ahab of drought and famine to come upon the land. But Ahab scoffed. And the Lord told Elijah to go and hide himself by the brook Cherith, that there he should drink of the brook, and that he would be fed by the ravens. And the scripture records a simple and <br />wonderful statement: ‘So he went and did according unto the word of the Lord.’ (1 Kings 17:5.) <br />“There was no arguing. There was no excusing. There was no equivocating. Elijah simply ‘went and did according unto the word of the Lord.’ And he was saved from the terrible calamities that befell those who scoffed and argued and questioned”(Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley, CR, Oct. 1971, 159; or Ensign, Dec. 1971, 123–24). <br />
    4. 4. Elijah seals the heavens against rain, flees from Ahab and Jezebel, and is miraculously sustained in the wilderness <br />(1 Kings 17:1-6). <br />
    5. 5. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said: <br /> “I know we can each Do something, however small that Act may seem to be. We can Pay an Honest Tithe and Give our Fast and freewill Offerings. …<br /> … And we can watch for other ways to Help. To worthy causes and needy people, we can Give Time if we don’t have money, and we can Give Love when our time runs out. We can Share the loaves we have and Trust God that the Cruse of Oil will Not Fail” <br />(Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, CR, Apr. 1996, 41; or Ensign, May 1996, 31). <br />
    6. 6. The Lord sends Elijah to a widow who gives him food and water<br />At his command the barrel of meal and the cruse of oil of the widow of Zarephath fail not<br />(1 Kings 17:7-16)<br />
    7. 7. Elder Holland said …that the widow’s response when Elijah asked her for food was an “Expression of Faith—as great, under these circumstances, as any I know in the scriptures. <br />… Perhaps uncertain what the Cost of her Faith would be, <br /> …she first took her small loaf to Elijah, obviously Trusting that if there were not enough bread left over, at least she and her son would have died in an Act of Pure Charity” (Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, CR, Apr. 1996, 39; or Ensign, May 1996, 29). <br />
    8. 8. President Ezra Taft Benson taught: <br />“When we put God first, all other things fall into their proper place or drop out of our lives. Our love of the Lord will govern the claims for our affection, the demands on our<br />time, the interests we pursue, and the order of our priorities. …  <br />“May God bless us to put [him] first and, as a result, reap peace in this life and eternal life with a fulness of joy in the life to come” (Pres. Ezra Taft Benson, CR, Apr. 1988, 3, 6; or Ensign, May 1988, 4, 6). <br />
    9. 9. Elijah raises <br />the widow’s son <br />from <br />the dead <br />(1 Kings 17:17-24).<br />
    10. 10. In the third year of the famine, the Lord commanded Elijah, “Go [show] thyself to Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth” <br />(Ahab blamed Elijah for the famine.)<br />As Elijah had requested, Ahab gathered all of Israel and 850 false priests at Mount Carmel<br />When the people gathered to hear Elijah speak, he asked them, “How long halt ye between two opinions?” (1 Kings 18)<br />
    11. 11. Elder Neal A. Maxwell said: <br /> “The stirring words of various prophets … urge us to choose, to decide, and not to halt. <br /> … Elijah’s message <br /> has tremendous <br /> relevancy today, <br />for all must finally choose between the gods of this world and the God of Eternity” (Elder Neal A Maxwell, That My Family Should Partake [1974], 22).<br />
    12. 12. After more than two years of famine, Elijah meets with Ahab and challenges the priests of Baal to call down fire from heaven to consume their sacrifice (1 Kings 18:1-2, 17-24) .<br />
    13. 13. Elijah flees into the wilderness and is fed by an angel. Elijah goes to Horeb, where he is comforted by the Holy Ghost and instructed to continue in God’s work (1 Kings 19). <br />
    14. 14. God Comforts Elijah on Mount Horeb<br />
    15. 15. When a news reporter asked President Hinckley how he communicates with God, the prophet responded,<br /> “I think the best way I could describe the process is to Liken it to the Experience of Elijah as set forth in the Book of First Kings. <br /> Elijah spoke to the Lord, and there was a wind, a great wind, and the Lord was Not in the wind. And there was an earthquake, and the Lord was Not in the earthquake. And there was a fire, and the Lord was Not in the fire. And after the fire a Still, Small Voice, which I describe as the Whisperings of the Spirit” (Pres. Gordon B. Kinckley, CR, Oct. 1996, 71; or Ensign, Nov. 1996, 51). <br />
    16. 16. President Ezra Taft Benson taught: <br />“Do you take time to Listen to the Promptings of the Spirit? <br />Answers to Prayer come most often by a<br />Still Voice and are Discerned by our Deepest, Innermost Feelings. <br />I tell you that You Can Know the Will of God concerning yourselves if you will Take the Time to Pray and to Listen” (Pres. Ezra Taft Benson, CR, Oct. 1977, 46; or Ensign, Nov. 1977, 32). <br />
    17. 17. We will be Comforted and Guided as we put God First and Heed the Whisperings of the Holy Ghost.<br />
    18. 18. Joseph Smith said: “The Spirit, Power, and Calling of Elijah is, that ye have Power to hold the Key of the Revelations, Ordinances, Oracles, Powers and Endowments of the Fulness of the Melchizedek Priesthood and of the Kingdom of God on the earth; and to Receive, Obtain, and Perform all the Ordinances belonging to the Kingdom of God, even unto the Turning of the Hearts of the Fathers unto the Children, and the Hearts of the Children unto the Fathers, even those who are in Heaven. …  “I wish you to understand this subject, for it is important; and if you Receive IT, this is the Spirit of Elijah, that we Redeem our Dead, and Connect Ourselves WITH our Fathers which are in Heaven, and Seal up our Dead to Come Forth in the First Resurrection; and here we want the Power of Elijah to Seal those who dwell on Earth to those who dwell in Heaven. This is the Power of Elijah and the Keys of the Kingdom of Jehovah” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, Joseph Fielding Smith [1976], 337–38). <br />
    19. 19. The Spirit of Elijah<br />The Spirit of Elijah refers to the work we do “to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers” (D&C 110:15). This work includes Family History Research and Temple Work for the Living and the Dead. We call it the Spirit of Elijah because Elijah restored the Keys of the Sealing Power of the Priesthood to Joseph Smith (D&C 110:13–16). Through this Power, Sealing Ordinances can be performed that unite Families for Eternity.<br />

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