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This week we launched into our summer sermon series, using 1 & 2 Kings as a backdrop to the lives, words, and work of two prophets (Elijah and Elisha); work which actually highlights the patience, power, and promises of God and how everything in the Old Testament points towards Christ. The whole of the book of Kings is one tragedy after another; from the demise of the splendor of Solomon to the split of the kingdom to multi-generational idol worship and, eventually, the destruction of Jerusalem and exile. Elijah enters the scene in chapter 17 during the reign of the especially evil Ahab and his wife, Jezebel. Elijah’s sudden appearance reminds the people of God that, even though evil is prevalent and disheartening, we don’t need to despair or, in Peter’s and Isaiah’s words, ‘fear what they fear…’ God’s counter-culture work is already in motion. The thread of Scripture is God’s tenacious pursuit of His people. Elijah proclaims the word of God; specifically that there would be no rain, a direct assault on the empty promises of Ahab and Jezebel’s god, Baal. During the famine, we see God’s creative provision through the daily delivery of (unclean) ravens and the care of an (unlikely) Gentile widow. Through it all we see (and will continue to see) God’s unshakable promises being kept throughout the tragic and inconsistent storyline of the Israelites; all paving the way for the King of Kings to redeem, restore, and enact His eternal Kingdom.