May 10th – Holy Fire

Yesterday we quoted Paul telling us not to quench the Spirit. I used to wonder,how can any Christian quench the Holy Spirit when after all the Holy Spirit is God within?
Well, I checked the Bible and found that in the New Testament alone the word ‘quench’ can be used to mean to stamp out what could become a blaze; i.e. snuff out what could be but a smouldering wick in a lamp or candle. To quench also means to extinguish with water, to drown out by excluding the air. Mark chapter 9 says that the fires of Gehenna cannot be quenched like this.The big shield used by Roman soldiers was covered in hide and soaked so that it would quench flaming arrows fired at them. It must have been very heavy.

In Ephesians chapter 6 where the armour of God includes that particular defensive shield of the Roman army, the word for it in Greek means ‘a door’. When locked together these shields could extinguish all the blazing arrows hurled at the Roman soldiers, whose power was simply this – they worked in total formation creating a massive, armed caterpillar which marched into the enemy like a tank, protected on all sides and above, and able to quench the enemy’s fire.

From all this we see the main picture. The Holy Spirit’s fire is not the enemy fire aimed to destroy us-but God’s fire of glory given to light up our darkness. To bring warmth to cold hearts, to burn as Holy passion in deadened lives. So when God, the Holy Spirit, approaches you and begins to warm you up, do not (says the New Testament) do not quench, snuff out, extinguish, drown out, or put up your guard against God. Let his fire burn.

These are the words of John the Baptist speaking of what Jesus would do.
“I baptise you with water.But one more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” Luke 3:16

The old lay preacher may have got his metaphors mixed, but you know what he meant when he said ‘If there is a spark in any heart, Lord water that spark!’.

A Prayer:
Lord our trouble is,he wants to be in control of our lives.The thought of being truly consumed by you scares into deadness.Coldness we can manage, but your holy fire sounds a bit dangerous to us.Lord grant us grace to receive your fire.

Now read I Corinthians 3: 1-17.

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Thought 4 The Day

It is better to deserve honours and not have them, than to have them and not deserve them. (Mark Twain)

Through the year calendar

May 2016
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Click on any previous date in the above calendar to read the relevant Through The Year post
Believe it or Not
Sometimes you just can't believe it's true!
A Word in Time
Life has a funny way of connecting us all!
Cooke's Tour of The Bible
Frank Cooke's journey through the Old and New Testaments
Take 2
Some useful life lessons
Mind Stretchers
An open mind is a healthy mind!
Bible Bloopers
Even the Bible has its funnies!