by Clarence E. Macartney

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The Greatest Questions of the Bible and of Life
What Doest Thou Here? (13 of 18)
Clarence E. Macartney
1 Kings 19:9

The devil, according to the legend, once advertised
his tools for sale at public auction. When the
prospective buyers assembled, there was one oddly-
shaped tool which was labeled "Not For Sale." Asked to
explain why this was, the devil answered, "I can spare
my other tools, but I cannot spare this one. It is the
most useful implement that I have. It is called
'Discouragement,' and with it I can work my way into
hearts otherwise inaccessible. When I get this tool
into a man's heart, the way is open to plant anything
there I may desire." The legend embodies sober truth.
Discouragement is a dangerous state of mind because it
leaves one open to the assault of the enemies of the

Elijah was down and almost out. The last time we saw
him was at the moment of his great triumph over the
prophets of Baal. The view from Mount Carmel is one of
the grandest in all the Holy Land. Looking westward
and northward one sees the waves of the Mediterranean
breaking in white lines on the shore of the beautiful
bay and against the gray walls of Acre, the Ptolemais
where Paul landed and the stronghold before whose
walls in 1799 Napoleon Bonaparte suffered his first
serious reverse. Looking eastward and northward one
sees the hills of Nazareth, the great plain of
Esdraelon, and the towering mountain of the
Transfiguration, Mount Tabor. It was here on the
slopes of Carmel that Elijah won his signal victory
over the prophets of Baal when the Lord answered him
with fire. After the destruction of the prophets of
Baal and the coming of abundant rain after the years
of drought, Elijah girded his loins and ran before the
chariot of King Ahab from Carmel to Jezreel. What a
picture! There you have Elijah the very incarnation of
victory and triumph.

But now we see him under a juniper tree, asking God to ...

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