Spiritual Depression

By Chette Nichols Jr

Ever get depressed to the point of not wanting to go on in life?

Ever feel like you’re the only one in all the world going through what your going through?

That is Spiritual Depression.

Well spiritual depression is a condition of all men, even among the saved, because we have an enemy that would seek to rob us of our vitality and strength.  There are cycles in a Christians life, well anyone’s life for that matter, and we go through times of plenty and times of want (Ecc 3:1-8).  And it always seems that during the times of want we see wickedness prevail in our lives but God uses all things to work for good in our lives Romans 8:28.

Depression is common to all men, secular psychiatrist call it a “mental or nervous breakdown”.  However God has given us a way of escape.   1Cor 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God [is] faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [it].    We only fail to recognize this and go quickly to him with all things.  I like the attitude of Job when wickedness and evil befell him he said, “What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?”  We must always remember for us these events are nothing more than a form of chastisement for he who trust in God and Christ for salvation. The symptoms of a nervous breakdown or spiritual depression include despairity, worry, anxiety, fear, sinfulness, thoughts of suicide, and anti-social behavior.

The greatest example of the spiritual depression that we all experience is that of one of the greatest prophets ever known.  He did great deeds, his words came true and yet he was just a man like you and me.  This man was Elijah.  We have no record of his birth, though we know he is a Tishbite from Gilead.  He seems to come from obscurity and in the pages of scripture he jumped into action and when he has completed his course God carried him away.  

James wrote this about him. James 5:17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, . . .  Did you get that he was a regular guy and man like any other troubled the same way as we.

A little context might help.  He just finished proving to Israel that the LORD was the true God and that the people should serve him.  After the Baalite priest were unable to get their god to answer with fire upon their sacrifice.  Elijah not only built an alter and set in place the sacrifice but he drenched it with so much water that no man could ever get it to ignite with a gallon of gas and a large box of matches.  After God answered and consumed the sacrifice he then killed the 400 Baalite priests.  He has gone home and receives word that the queen is out to get him.

Let’s look at this moment in the life of this enigmatic man, lets see how one gets into a spiritual depression and what it takes to get out of it.  Like all problems in our lives there are generally steps that lead to its onset and to its end.

1Kings 19:1-18

I.   Vv 1-5 The Cause and Symptoms of Spiritual Depression

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