Word on Fire

Paul writes to Timothy

'I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you'
(2Tim 1:6)

so, to help the church with this, we offer this brief word, because

“Is not my word like fire,” declares the Lord'
(Jeremiah 23:29)

We Need the Fire!

So you're saved from the fires of hell? Praise the Lord! Then let me tell you, brothers and sisters, what this means, concerning the fire from heaven. It means you need the fire now! Today. For this life. Before judgement day. Fire destroys and it consumes, but it doesn't destroy itself. It doesn't destroy that which is in its own nature. Jesus said 'I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!' (Lk 12:49). We need the fire so that we will be united with God in his character and his charismata, and with fellow believers in our passion and our purpose. Let me explain.

What a privilege a Christian has, to be united with God through Christ Jesus! what a privilege that he whose eyes are like flaming fire (Rev 1:14) should make his home in us! John the Baptist promised 'after me will come one who is more powerful than I ... He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and with fire' (Mt 3:11). Have you received the baptism of water (Acts 2:38a)? Have you received the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Acts 19:2)? Then know this. We must also receive the fire that the Holy Spirit brings! If we want God in our lives, we must want the fire! If we want to become more Christ-like, being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory (2Cor 3:18), then we must want the fire! Our God is a consuming fire (Deut 4:24)! The church in the UK needs to become more consumed by God. There are too many who are saved from the fires of hell, but not on fire with the character of God in this life! When two fires converge, come together, there's an explosion of power! When a believer's character becomes aligned with God's character, there is a similar mighty outbreaking of heaven's power in his/ her life!

Charismata is the New Testament Greek meaning 'graces' or 'gifts'. It is the word used for spiritual gifts. A Christian who is not on fire with the character of God is most unlikely to be moving regularly in spiritual gifts, and will be missing up opportunities to see people saved, healed, and delivered from the Devil's clutches. A Christian who's not on fire will be overcome by spirit-quenching doubts when the Master calls for a servant to perform a miracle! Turn with me to Acts 2:1-4.

The believers gathered in that upper room had a form of unity with God, but this was only a unity of his presence with them and not in them (Jn 14:17b). They had neither passion nor purpose. They were hiding away, unsure of what to do, or how to go about it. Then whooosh! Fire roared down upon them accompanied by a sound like wildfire racing through a dry field! The fire is the presence of God - in the Bush, in the Cloud, on Carmel, and at Pentecost. Immediately they were all inspired with the purpose of the Holy Spirit, guiding them, driving them, out into the wilderness world around them, as the Spirit had earlier driven Jesus out into the wilderness (Lk 4:1) to win battles over Satan in preparation for winning the ultimate battle for the world!. The fire was there for all to see 'They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them'. The fire was promised (Mt 3:11), and the fire was given. God's promises will never fail you, brother or sister. His promises never fail anyone in Christ Jesus (2Cor 1:20), all of them - including the promise of fire from heaven - are given so that you may participate in the divine nature (2Pet 1:4). This same fire is a promise to you and to your children, and all who the Lord calls (Acts 2:39).

The Lord's purpose is to save, heal, deliver, and prosper everyone. For this to happen he calls on his servants to be flames of fire (Heb 1:7), so that the world might see, hear, and experience the goodness of God. Sadly, this world is plagued, not blessed, by so much of the Church. In large measure today's UK church is lukewarm (Rev 3:15-16). Charles Haddon Spurgeon once said 'Religion is a dish to be served hot; once it becomes lukewarm it is sickening'. How true! The heavenfire is evangelistic, and to win the lost, with signs following to confirm the word, our religion needs fire. A lukewarm church may well (and evidence shows it does) win members, but not converts, not disciples! As Peter of Rheims, a thirteenth century friar, is quoted as saying 'Anyone who is not burning will not be able to set anyone else on fire'! A Christian who loses passion soon loses power, and eventually loses purpose! Lord protect us from the asbestos of religion!

But be sure of this. Every reader of this message, every believer of the Word, is born to be a world-changer - by the power of the Spirit, in the name of Jesus! Born to be a life-changer by the life-changing power that changed my life, and can change your life! See what happened to the 120 when the fire came upon them that first Pentecostal day! The word says 'the Spirit enabled them' (Acts 2:4). The baptism of Holy Spirit fire does the same for each and every one of us too! Brothers and sisters, we need the fire!

This message is abbreviated from chapter 1 of 'Seeking Heaven's Fire', available from Resources