Weekly bulletin article by Mike Johnson

I just heard that there was a snow challenge that people could participate in this past week. Apparently, this was an online challenge issued to anyone who would go out into the snow in a tee shirt and shorts and fall into the snow! I wanted to call it snow stupidity! The only crazier thing I heard was when my son-in-law made a snow angel, had me take a picture of it, and then proceeded to tell Ezra, “Look an angel fell from heaven and landed in the snow!” He is not!

Then, of course, there was that bucket challenge. Also issued online, this was an ice-water challenge. The challenge was to have ice-water poured on you in some odd or unique way and video it for broadcast on the internet. It was in support of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). The cause I appreciate; the course I did not! I don’t like being cold!

Challenges are not new. There was a challenge about 3 to 4 thousand years ago that was a spectacular event! The king of Israel was Ahab. He was an evil man who did not honor God as the only true King of Israel. He encouraged and participated in idolatrous worship.

Through His prophet Elijah, God issued a challenge to the 450 prophets of the idol god Baal and to the 400 prophets of the idol god Asherah (I Kings 18:19). The challenge was simple—that is, if these gods were real!

Make two altars—one for the two idol gods and one for the God of heaven. Have the 850 prophets pray to their gods to consume with fire the sacrifice on their altar. Elijah will do the same to the God of heaven with his altar. Elijah’s challenge to the Israelites was simple, “How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” ( I Kings 18:21)

Daily, we are being challenged in the same way. The challenge is to follow God or follow some other god. We cannot follow both. We must choose. The challenge has been issued. What will you do?