“Elijah Must Come” (1998)


Immediately before all the lights went out and Israel plunged into 400 years of prophetic darkness, Malachi the Prophet declared the coming of "the great and terrible day of the Lord". A wonderful day for "you who fear and revere My Name", but dreadful for "all the arrogant and every evildoer" destined to be set ablaze like chaff. Then in the fifth verse of Malachi 4 came God's astonishing promise, "Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the Prophet before the coming of the great and terrible Day of the Lord."

Four silent centuries later, a shaggy, desert-hardened young prophet suddenly appeared in Israel on the banks of the Jordan River to break that prophetic drought, "Make ready the way of the Lord. Make His paths straight. He who is coming after Me is mightier than I. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. He will gather His wheat into the barn, and He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire."
(Matthew 3.3,11,12)

John the Baptist was of course referring to his cousin, Jesus of Nazareth, who went on to the Roman Cross to pour out His life's Blood to redeem and save the whole world. He died for you and me, but death could not imprison Him and He got up and walked out of the grave by the power of the Holy Spirit. Today He sits in Heaven's heart at the right hand of the Throne of Almighty God. But early in His earthly ministry the Son of God explained to His followers that John had been the fulfillment of Malachi's prophecy. He was Elijah.
(Matthew 11.14 and 17.10-13)

Now this is not just some cute or esoteric issue. It's of ultimate importance right now for Christians everywhere, because today we are eagerly and passionately anticipating the return of Jesus to be this world's King of kings and Lord of lords. It will be "the great and terrible Day of the Lord" and again, according to Malachi's ancient prophecy, Elijah must come first!

Throughout this amazing final century of the 2nd Christian millennium a powerful fascination for the person and ministry of the Prophet Elijah has been stirred up by the Lord. Sadly, it has occasionally led some to the mistaken belief that particular, greatly anointed and wonderfully used men of God have in fact been the promised prophet. It is fearful and yet necessary to note that two of these - John Alexander Dowie and William Branham - were removed from their place of divine appointment by the Lord because of this serious deception. You see, I am convinced that Elijah is going to come, but he will not appear as one very powerful individual, but as a corporate prophet. "Elijah" will be those followers of the Lord Jesus Christ who hunger for His appearing and enthronement, who are prepared to live in a particular and peculiarly demanding kind of relationship with His Holy Spirit and His anointings, and are deeply committed to being overtaken and caught up in the Last Days' purposes of God for His Church and the nations.