WOMEN OF THE BIBLE SERIES
Widow of Zarephath (I Kings 17:13-16)
I Kings 17:13-14, 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. 15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. 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.
During a famine, this widow fed the prophet Elijah before feeding her son and then herself. This widow was at the point of starvation. She and her son had enough food left for one last supper and they planned to lie down and starve to death. She did not have very much, only a handful of meal and a little oil. Notice! Here arrived the man of God! He told her to feed him first. When she heard the Word of God, she went and did as Elijah had commanded her. This required great faith to use the last little bit of meal she had to prepare bread for a total stranger. Yet she did it by faith! God wants us to learn to trust Him in every circumstance, regardless of what outward appearances may suggest. When God gives you His Word you can bank on it. If you have dedicated your life to the Lord and are fully committed in carrying out His will, then you are the Lord's servant, and He is responsible to provide your need.
The outcome of the faith giving was a barrel of meal that would not “waste” and a cruse of oil that would not “fail”. They would eat many days. She gave to the Lord and the Lord gave to her. She was rewarded for her faith giving as the widow gave to Elijah first, then to her son and to herself. As was with the widow, we must give to God first, before we can see God provide for us. The widow’s barrel of meal and cruse of oil never ran out. The power of God never fails, especially when you are scraping the bottom of the barrel. The flour that was used is a great reminder of Jesus Christ and His Word, the Bread of Life. The oil is a reminder of the Holy Spirit. They never fail. The meal and oil strengthened Elijah and the widow. The Word of God and the Spirit of God strengthens us. When we put the Lord first, He will multiply the little we have and meet our needs. No one has ever, or will ever, discover the limits of God’s great ability. God provides for His people. But there is a condition. We must trust and obey God's Word. Just as the widow trusted and obeyed the Lord, so we too must trust and obey Him. If we seek the Lord and His righteousness first, He promises to provide food, clothing, and shelter for His people. God will be with us every step of the way. He will hold our hands, hold us up, and even carry us when needed.
PRAYER: Father in Heaven, thank You that you are always faithful to Your promises of provision. You have faithfully provided for me and my family. You have promised to supply all my needs according to Your riches in glory. You are both our Provider for both our physical and spiritual needs. Thank You that You delight to provide for my needs. Lord, it is a great comfort to know that You know everything about me. You know the needs and necessities of life I have before they arise. Forgive me for not relying on You as I ought. Teach me to rely on You and to rely less on myself. Help me to cast all my care on You. Keep my heart ever thankful for Your gracious provision. In Jesus Name. AMEN!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.