The purpose of fire

Jeremiah 52:13: and he burned the house of Jehovah, and the king’s house; and all the houses of Jerusalem, even every great house, burned he with fire.

Fire as a spiritual symbol comes with various meaning. Derived from natural application, fire could mean renewal; it could mean empowerment, transformation it could mean purging in purification or in judgement.

The idea of purification is in place when we are referring to fire. In the purification of metals, fire is applied to separate the impurities from a substance. When speaking on the new order of priesthood in the book of Malachi, God reveals that under the New Testament, the people who will draw near him would have been refined by fire (Malachi 3:1-3).

Fire removes whatever elements that would affect the strength/durability/ flexibility, and the consistency, the integrity, of a particular metallic substance. The fire of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer is to remove anything that is not consistent with the nature the nature of Christ in us with. That is conveyed by his word in our lives.

Fire can change the very nature of things. That is why, when people see that you are different, as they saw in the lives of Peter and the apostles (Acts 4:1-13), it was the fire of the Holy Spirit that changed their nature from being cowards to being able to stand against the religious hierarchy of their time.

The explanation that the Pharisees had for the unparalleled boldness of the Apostles was that they had been with Jesus. But that is not the whole picture. Had they not “been with Jesus” when after Jesus was killed, they locked themselves up in a room (John 19:20)? No. The difference was the fire of the Holy Spirit. That changed their very nature from self consciousness to God-consciousness whereby they were transformed into the very nature of God, bold as a lion.

Paul speaking of his aim in working among the gentiles said he sets out to offer God the offering of the gentiles sanctified by the Holy Spirit. We know fire to be is a symbol of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4) and Paul was saying if he was going to present the offering of gentiles there lives must be marked by the transforming power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:16).

The impact of the Holy Spirit is what keeps the fire, the passion for God up in us. When the bible says a time is coming when, the love of many shall wax cold; the person who has maintained a constant communion with the Holy Spirit cannot fall into such situation (2Corinthians 13:14).

Isaiah experiences the fire of the Holy Spirit when after he saw the glory of the Lord and saw the gap between the holiness of God and himself, he lamented his wretchedness and the immediate response from the throne of God was for the coal of God to touch his tongue (Isaiah 6:1-8).

This means the fire of God the Holy Spirit has something to do with our mouth. To Jeremiah, God said, he has made His word in his mouth like fire (Jeremiah 23:20). The words were designed to be effective by the fire of the Holy Spirit. No wonder Jesus said the words that He speaks are spirit and life (John 6:63).

Paul proclaimed that he does not come to the people with empty words but that he speaks word that are expressions of the Holy Spirit, he even said that the words he uses are what the Holy Spirit teaches.

What all these goes to show is that the purpose of fire can be seen in purification and the invigoration of a minister’s words with the effectiveness of heavenly fire for unqualified impact.

Of Jesus, John the Baptist said, he is some one who will cause us to experience the only Spirit as fire (Luke 3:16-17); which causes separation, of impurities from the material. One thing that many struggle with and which God has provided a solution for in the fire of the Holy Spirit is lust. Job said that I have signed an agreement with my eyes not to look with lust on a female (Job 31:1).

In an attempt to deal with lust certain persons may recommend segregation from the society in radical ways, but let us examine the eyes of Jesus Christ, yes His literal eyes! We are told that his eyes are like a flame of fire (Revelation 2:18, 19:12). He has fire in his eyes. With eyes like that, there can be no impression of the spirit of lust on it. The fire will purify whatever that is seen by the eyes, never interpreting people as objects of lust. What would you give to have eyes like that? I believe that one of the purposes of fire is to purity ours eyes.

From the forgoing we have established that fire on the tongue means divine empowerment to speak forth the effectual word of God. The word of God is beyond mere speech in the mouth of God’s ministers, it has a living quality by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit also has a role to play in the eyes, giving you divine perspective of things and has become untouchable by the spirit of lust.

You may not be there yet, but you have the right to embrace it by faith as your ordained reality. And it is written, as Jesus is, so we are in this world; “flame-y” eyes and all (1John 4:17).

But don’t go playing with pornographic materials to test it. Remember Satan told Jesus to jump from a high hill to prove he was a Son of God (Luke 4:9-12). What I am saying is that in your day-to-day dealings, you are not as everybody else, not on your own account but because of the Holy Spirit who enable you to act with purity of eyes.

Peter describes some people has having eyes full of adultery (2Peter 2:14). They have even “graduated” and are proclaiming adultery as the alternative to the “limiting” monogamy, confirming the biblical diagnosis for such kinds of people (eyes full of adultery). The fire of the Holy Spirit takes care of such for the believers.

But you ask, what about Christians, even pastors, who fall into adultery? I don’t have all the answers, but I guess if they had read a piece like this; they would have realised that they don’t have to be a victim of the spirit of lust through the fire of the Holy Spirit and maybe it would not have happened.

WordFromGod: Embrace the fire

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