‘Ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening.’
-1 Kings 17.6
Elijah unleashed his prophetic message upon the unsuspecting King. That short and single word did more to upset Ahab’s political-religious agenda than all the internal pundits and foreign powers combined. God now tells Elijah to go hide – and Elijah obeys.
He gets out of the public view and feeds himself on the meat that ravens bring him. Now some scholars argue that the Hebrew word translated as ‘raven’ may be an alternative word for ‘Arab’. So, it could’ve been Arabs that were giving this Israeli prophet food. (Which some may cheekily quip is a greater miracle.)
It was important that Elijah ate meat. He was a man who was not yet done his mission and he needed strength for his upcoming confrontations with the idols of Baal and Ashtoreth. Men need meat.
Now before I get attacked by some nightmarish mob of vegan feminists, I will concede that women also should eat meat and that Elijah didn’t just eat meat. He ate bread with the meat (steak sandwich?) and later on in the same chapter we find Elijah actually eating cake. I’m tempted to think this was an effeminate backsliding on his part, but God seems to grant sanction it when he eats cake yet again in chapter 19. Thankfully, by the end of that chapter, we see Elijah eating lots of beef again. Our man has returned to his senses and all is right with the world.
The author of Hebrews chides his readers for their immaturity (Ch. 5). He says they still have a diet of milk when they should be eating meat. He ends the chapter by saying ‘But strong meat belongs to them that are of full age’ (v. 14). He connects their spiritual maturity – not with the amount of time they’ve been Christians – but with their spiritual diet.
If you want to grow into a man that God can use, you must eat meat. Years passed do not make one strong in God. You will be unfit for confronting the idols of our day if you’re only on a diet of cake and milk. Have a real plan to study God’s word daily. Read Christian classics* that have stood the test of time – no the latest spiritual junk food from publishers trying to make more money. Get alone with God daily and nourish your soul on a grill of spiritual lamb chops, T-bones. See what God will do with you and you get strong.
You staying weak does not serve this world.
*Classic books by authors like Andrew Murray or EM Bounds are a great start.