Even as I write this post for the blog, I am in the land known as God’s own country! This is the place of my birth but every time I come here, it thrills my heart to see the number of Christian believers here in this land. At times, I feel like some Jonah had come and preached here and probably the entire town must have repented and turned to the Lord. It is just phenomenal to see people all around carrying their bibles held close to their chests and walking in for a service on a Sunday morning. What is the essence behind such a large number of people turning to the Jesus? I believe the answer lies in the importance that the church in this land gives to the fiery baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Fire Attracts the World
If there is one thing that the world around us today won’t ignore or fail to notice, it is a person or a church set on fire! I just realized how a pastor of a church in Florida whose membership reduced to 30 people earned a world wide publicity because he declared that he will be burning Quran on Sept 11th. I can’t stop myself from commenting how foolish and non-scriptural such a deed would be! God has not commissioned us to set things on fire, but people!! If only a preacher, a singer, a dancer, an usher, or even the person sitting next to you in a church is on fire, you will catch that fire too! You will want to go back to that church for more of that! The fire of the Holy Spirit is contagious. The best advertisement for a church would be to set the church on fire, people from all around will COME to SEE what is happening in there. I don’t think God could have used a better way to catch Moses’s attention than the burning bush.
Fire Demands a Commitment
Moses couldn’t resist giving a commitment to God the moment he was hearing God speak to him from the burning bush. People seldom say no to a gospel that is preached with fire or to a lifestyle that is blended with fire! The reason most people don’t even care about making a commitment to the gospel when you witness to them is because its very cold and easily escapable. That was not the way John the baptist, Jesus or the apostles preached! Every place that Paul ever preached had either a Revival or a Riot! The world should never be given an opportunity to make a neutral response to the gospel of Jesus Christ. When accompanied by the fiery presence of the Holy Spirit people are forced to make a decision!
Fire Consumes Unholiness
Moses heard a voice from the burning bush demanding him to take off the sandals because the place he was standing on was holy ground. That is what fire baptized people demand of a wicked and perverse generation. Fire demands a life of purity, of cleanliness, and of godliness and consumes every thing that stops us from attaining it! I love to hear messages that are filled with grace. But I can’t imagine Jesus ever preaching a message filled with grace without ending it with an invitation to a holy and godly living! The good new is that we don’t have to do anything, it is the fire that consumes not your ice-cold will power! Anybody who comes in contact with the fire of heaven will walk out with cleansed lips like Isaiah did. It becomes possible to lead a holy and blameless life like Jesus did, if only you and I surrender to the Holy Spirit’s leading and empowering like He did.
Baptized By FIRE
John the baptist proclaims in Matthew 3:11 that Jesus is one who baptizes us with the Holy Spirit and Fire. As a pastor, every time I baptize somebody I remind them that I can only baptize you in the water, but there is someone greater, there is something greater that you are yet to encounter. Seek after that! Often in ministry, we run after the wrong things. Often we get satisfied with a few divine experiences. But a heart that thirsts for heaven will be satisfied with the new wine, will be filled with the divine fire and commissioned with the heavenly authority. My prayer for you is that you will ASK, SEEK and KNOCK for the right things in your life!
Luke 11:9-13 ESV
(9) And I tell you, ASK, and it will be given to you; SEEK, and you will find; KNOCK, and it will be opened to you.(10) For EVERYONE who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.(11) What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent;(12) or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?(13) If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”