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Don Stewart :: Why Is the Holy Spirit Compared to Fire?
Why Is the Holy Spirit Compared to Fire?
The Identity of the Holy Spirit – Question 25
The Bible uses many different symbols for the Holy Spirit. One of them is fire. We find John the Baptist comparing the Holy Spirit to fire.
I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire ( Matthew 3:11 RSV ).
John said that the Holy Spirit will baptize people with the Holy Spirit and with fire. Consequently we have this comparison of the Spirit of God with fire.
Fire Appeared on the Day of Pentecost
On the Day of Pentecost, we are told that “tongues like fire” appeared on the disciples when the Holy Spirit came down in a special way. The Book of Acts records it as follows.
Then they saw what looked like fiery tongues moving in all directions, and a tongue came and settled on each person there. The Holy Spirit took control of everyone, and they began speaking whatever languages the Spirit let them speak ( Acts 2:3 , 4 CEV).
Among other things, this would remind the Jews of God speaking to Moses by means of the burning bush. Scripture records what occurred as follows.
There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up ( Exodus 3:2 NIV ).
This was a well-known miracle for all of the children of Israel.
Fire Speaks of God’s Presence and Power
Fire speaks symbolically of God’s presence and His power. It also testifies to His approval of what is occurring. For example, God’s power and approval was demonstrated through the fire that came down and consumed the burnt offering that Elijah had prepared. The Bible explains what took place in this manner.
Then the fire of the LORD fell and consumed the burnt offering, the wood, the stones, and the dust, and even licked up the water that was in the trench ( 1 Kings 18:38 NRSV).
The fire of the Lord came down and consumed the sacrifice. This is how God demonstrated His presence in a practical way.
God Himself Is Compared to Fire
We also find that the God of the Bible is compared to fire. The writer to the Hebrews put it this way.
For our God is a consuming fire ( Hebrews 12:29 KJV ).
Since the Holy Spirit is God, it is not surprising that He also is compared with fire.
Fire Can Speak of the Purging of Sin
Fire is used as symbolizing God purging sin. In the Book of Malachi, we read.
The Lord will purify the descendants of Levi, as though they were gold or silver. Then they will bring the proper offerings to the Lord ( Malachi 3:3 CEV).
Here we find that sin is purified by fire.
Isaiah the prophet wrote of something similar when he spoke of the “spirit of burning.” He explained it in this manner.
When the Lord has washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and purged the bloodshed of Jerusalem from her midst, by the spirit of judgment and the spirit of burning ( Isaiah 4:4 NASB ).
Thus, the Lord uses fire to purge sin.
After Isaiah saw the Lord upon His throne, He had to be purged from his sin with fire. We read the following.
Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for” ( Isaiah 6:6 , 7 NIV ).
Sin is purged through fire.
Fire Speaks of God’s Judgment
Fire can also speak of God’s judgment. We read of this in the Book of Leviticus.
So fire came out from the presence of the LORD and consumed them, and they died before the LORD ( Leviticus 10:2 NIV ).
Those who rejected the message of Jesus will be judged by means of fire. The city of Jerusalem, with its temple, was destroyed by fire one generation after the coming of the Holy Spirit.
The ultimate destination for unbelievers is the “lake of fire.” Therefore, fire is indeed a proper symbol of the work of the Holy Spirit.
Summary – Question 25 Why Is the Holy Spirit Compared to Fire?
Fire is used symbolically in Scripture in a number of ways. Among them, we find that the person and work of the Holy Spirit is compared to fire. Indeed, it tells us a number of things about who He is as well as what He does. For one thing, God’s presence and His approval are symbolized by fire. In fact, the Lord used fire to demonstrate that Elijah was a genuine prophet of God. He did this by sending fire from heaven and consuming the sacrifice which Elijah put on the altar.
God Himself is compared to fire. The Bible says that He is a “consuming fire.”
Fire is also symbolic of God purging sins from believers. We are told that He cleanses believers through the refining process.
Fire is representative of judging unbelief. Scripture says that there will be a final judgment where unbelievers will be thrown into the lake of fire. Sadly, fire will be their judgment for all eternity because of their rejection of the work of the Holy Spirit who reveals Christ to them.
Thus, fire is a fitting symbol for the Spirit of God.
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5 Bible Verses about The Holy Spirit Described As Fire
Most Relevant Verses
And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.
When the Lord has washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and purged the bloodshed of Jerusalem from her midst, by the spirit of judgment and the spirit of burning,
“As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear His threshing floor; and He will gather His wheat into the barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
John answered and said to them all, “As for me, I baptize you with water; but One is coming who is mightier than I, and I am not fit to untie the thong of His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in His hand to thoroughly clear His threshing floor, and to gather the wheat into His barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
Do not quench the Spirit;
- Described ( 27 instances )
- Fire ( 627 instances )
- Holy ( 1282 instances )
- Spirit ( 766 instances )
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- 108 more topics on Spirit
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How Is the Holy Spirit Like Fire?
Throughout the Bible, God's power appears as or gets compared to fire. So what does that tell us about the Holy Spirit appearing as fire?
I could see the smoke from my house. My mom and I went outside and watched while black smoke billowed from a different part of the neighborhood in a dark plume into the sky.
Motivated by care and questions, we walked from our house toward the smoke. Whose house was it? Did we know them? Is everyone okay? With the column of smoke as our guide, Mom and I made it to the burning house. Firetrucks and responders had arrived, and the house’s family was on the street, safe and unharmed.
We weren’t the only ones that had walked over, though. A crowd gathered for the same reasons.
Fires draw a crowd. People remember witnessing or experiencing fires.
Scripture speaks of God and uses all natural imagery to describe his nature – mountains, thunder, lightning, and water. The most consistent, however, is flame and fire. Fire is full of mystery and wonder, causing both comfort and fear.
What about the Holy Spirit? We sing songs and use the idea of flame to refer to the Spirit. But how is the Holy Spirit like fire?
Where Does the Bible Compare God to Fire?
Scripture compares God to fire early in the narrative, in one of the Bible’s central events that matters deeply to God’s redemptive story: the covenant to Abram (Abraham). Abram questions God’s promise—that he will have a son in his old age and his descendants will have a promised land. God tells Abram to bring animals, cut them into two pieces, and leave them on the ground. Abram goes to sleep, and God passes between the sacrificial pieces, an ancient sign of covenant agreement ( Genesis 15 ).
One of the ways God passes through is as a flaming torch. Additionally, only God passes through, not Abram. The tradition would have been for both parties to pass through the sacrifice as a commitment to the covenant. But God makes this covenant with himself to Abram. It’s going to happen through Abram’s power.
Moses encounters God in a bush that burns without being consumed ( Exodus 3:2-3 ). Moses feels awe and wonder, and God uses this conversation to commission him to go back to Egypt to set his people free.
The next time God comes to make a covenant is with the whole nation of Israel at Sinai ( Exodus 19:16-19 ). God descends upon the top of the mountain in a dark cloud, with thunder and lightning. There is also smoke because God descended in a “form of fire.” God spoke to the people from that fire “face to face,” according to Deuteronomy 5:4 , just like he did with Moses at the burning bush.
Moving forward as a people, the Israelites were led by a cloud during the day. God led and protected them at night with a pillar of fire ( Exodus 13:21 ). It must have been a continually miraculous sight to see a pillar of fire hovering in the air above the Tabernacle, then moving when God decided to move.
Speaking of the Tabernacle, its instructions included a burning incense in front of the Holy of Holies ( Exodus 30:9 ) and a lampstand with burning oil to be lit day and night ( Exodus 27:20-21 ).
Generations later, during the dedication of Solomon’s Temple, the first sacrifice was accepted by fire from Heaven and thick smoke ( 2 Chronicles 7:1-16 ).
Along with God’s presence, leading, and speaking, fire represented ways that God punished and judged people. A fire goes before God, consuming people in his path ( Psalm 50:3 ). Fire’s destructive force also played a big role in Elijah ’s ministry. First, in Elijah’s confrontation with the priests of Baal ( 1 Kings 18 ) and later when King Ahaziah sent a captain and soldiers to arrest the prophet ( 2 Kings 1:1-14 ).
Fire as judgment also appeared in Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego’s story when they were thrown into the fiery furnace. However, they were innocent. Tyranny sent them there, so the fire didn’t hurt them ( Daniel 3:16-28 ).
The New Testament refers to God as a consuming fire ( Hebrews 12:29 ). At the final judgment, this world will be consumed with fire ( 2 Peter 3:10 ). People will be thrown into the Lake of Fire prepared for the devil and his angels ( Revelation 21:8 ). Jesus also spoke of eternal punishment by fire ( Matthew 25:41 ).
We must remember both the “goodness and severity of God,” as Paul reminds us in Romans 11:22 . God is expressed as fire, as his being and nature, and part of that nature is a condemnation of sin and his enemies.
When Does the Holy Spirit Appear Like Fire?
The New Testament continues connecting Jesus and God with fire ( 2 Thessalonians 1:7 ; Revelation 1:14 ), along with his judgment and eternal punishment from Hell.
Yet the New Testament takes the idea of God and fire a step further. The Holy Spirit is identified with fire , and God’s fire is seen not as judgment for believers but as refining and testing.
John the Baptist begins the idea when he says he baptizes with water (an Old Covenant-related idea of washing the outside clean), the Messiah will baptize with the Spirit and fire (or Spirit-fire, Matthew 3:11 ). Since Christ is (obviously) above John, Jesus’ baptism is far greater. Fire would consume and clean more (and on a deeper level) than water.
4 Signs That Your Hyper-Spirituality Has Become an Idol
This statement reaches fulfillment on the Day of Pentecost. Jesus had told the disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the Holy Spirit. When the Jewish festival of Pentecost begins, they were baptized with that Holy Spirit, seen as a “tongue of fire” on each person ( Acts 2:3 ). They went out from there and began speaking from the Spirit, supernaturally, in other languages about the wonderful works of God.
That fire sure did draw a crowd, and thousands were saved that day.
What does this event from Acts 2 mean? Yes, a fulfillment of the baptism of Spirit-fire John the Baptist spoke of, but even more. Given the Old Testament’s references to fire, we can see this event as God enacting the New Covenant and accepting the sacrifice of their lives unto his service. As he spoke from the burning bush and Mount Sinai, now he speaks through his disciples by his Spirit. In this one event, the disciples of Christ enter a New Covenant through Christ, the Temple of God, and God’s voice of God on Earth.
It makes sense that the Holy Ghost is seen as fire. The Spirit is the third person in the Trinity, fully God like the Father and the Son. Just as the Father and the Son are seen as fire, the Spirit is fire.
Furthermore, God’s judging fire doesn’t condemn those filled with the Spirit. Fire exposes what something is made of. That fire now tests our faith, refining and strengthening our character and the grace we walk in. That refined faith is now more precious than gold ( 1 Peter 1:7 ) because it is eternal and lasts. Gold will be consumed with everything else worldly. At the last judgment, our works will be tested and proven by God’s fire to see whether they were based on Christ’s work ( 1 Corinthians 3:13 ).
Perhaps I’ll put it another way. All will stand before God and give an account ( 2 Corinthians 5:10 ). The fire of God will test what fire our works were made of and judge accordingly. Did we live according to the Spirit-fire of the Holy Spirit? This is why we must be born again and cling to God in relationship through Christ.
When Do We Receive the Holy Spirit?
Scholars and theologians debate the exact time a believer receives the Holy Spirit. The Bible is unclear about a specific moment. The disciples waited until Pentecost. Others received during preaching. Former disciples of John the Baptist had to be told about the Holy Spirit, and Paul laid hands on them to receive it.
Therefore, there isn’t a formula we can follow. It completely depends on God to give the Spirit to whom he will. It is his gift, and he gives it when he deems it prudent. In other words, we can’t jump through the right hoops to get the Holy Spirit. Paul and Barnabas dealt with this misconception when a man named Simon tried to get it by money ( Acts 8:1-25 ).
We are told, however, that God is a good Father who desperately wants to give us the Holy Spirit ( Luke 11:13 ). The Gospel centers around repentance, so our full receiving of the Holy Spirit, being born again from Heaven, is connected to the commitment of our entire lives away from our own strength unto following Jesus. We need his Spirit, his nature and power, to keep up with the Son of God, and that’s why we get him. It’s also a full gift. We have all three persons. He’s holding nothing back. We have everything in him when we give all we are to him.
That’s the pattern, but everyone has their individual stories. I’ve seen the Holy Spirit given in odd ways and unpredictable times.
Like God. Like fire.
What Does the Holy Spirit Empower Us to Do?
First, the Holy Spirit infuses us with God’s divine nature, sharing his being and power through his indwelling presence, which is the only way we can serve that divine being.
Second, this infusion and regeneration brings us into God’s family. We experience adoption and marriage (being lovingly chosen) and rebirth (emanating from him as children). We are eternally and completely united with God.
Third, the process empowers us to be God’s witnesses unto the world ( Acts 1:8 ). This was Jesus’ stated purpose for giving the Holy Spirit. Now that we have his presence within us, we can be willing expressions of God’s greatness.
Fourth, witnesses give an account before others. They speak. We can now speak the words of God as they did on the day of Pentecost. This includes the supernatural way we live, the Fruit of the Spirit, and the Gifts of the Spirit.
Fifth, the Holy Spirit will lead us into all truth ( John 16:13-15 ). Like the pillar of fire, even in the night, we will see clearly and know the right way to go and what to do.
Sixth, the Holy Spirit cleanses us from within, purifying us in a way that a simple washing of the outside (the weakness of the Old Testament) can’t do. This purifies our thoughts, feelings, and motives, all from God’s presence and voice.
Seventh, being consumed by the Holy Spirit’s fire and walking by the Spirit means we escape the fire of Judgment, the condemnation coming to the world. God’s holy fire is greater and protects us while he leads and empowers us.
Thank God for his Holy Spirit fire! What a gift to us as believers. Let us let his Spirit do his work within us and through us to give hope to a dying world.
Photo Credit: Max Kukurudziak/Unsplash
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← June 10, 2016 →
The Holy Spirit as Fire
Scripture reading — acts 2:1-13.
They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.
— Acts 2:3
June 10, 2016
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The New Testament uses several unique images to represent the person and work of the Holy Spirit. One image shows the Holy Spirit as fire. On Pentecost, following the sound of rushing wind filling the house where the apostles were staying, what appeared to be tongues of flame rested on each of them. They were immediately filled with the Holy Spirit, and their lives were changed forever.
A number of Old Testament passages help us understand the Holy Spirit as fire in the New Testament. Primarily fire represents the presence of God, as when Moses encountered God at the burning bush, and later when God appeared in a pillar of fire to lead his people in the wilderness (Exodus 3:2; 13:21).
In Acts, the tongues of fire represent the presence of God the Holy Spirit. This fulfills John the Baptist’s prophecy that the Messiah would baptize “with the Holy Spirit and fire” (Matthew 3:11-12). This also means that the purifying work of the Holy Spirit carries on in our lives today. The Spirit comes into our lives to transform us, cleansing and purifying us to become more like Christ in our daily living.
The thought of being purified by fire can be terrifying, but we can be assured that the same holy God who gave his only Son and poured out his Spirit at Pentecost wants to make us holy, just as he is holy.
Holy Spirit, enter our lives today as you did with the believers at Pentecost. Cleanse and purify us so that we can radiate the glory of Jesus in our world. Amen.
About the author — Kurt Selles
Kurt Selles is the director of ReFrame Ministries and serves as the Executive Editor of Today . He is a graduate of Calvin College and Seminary, and received his PhD from Vanderbilt University. Before coming to ReFrame, he served 19 years in Taiwan and China with CRC World Missions. Kurt later taught missions at Beeson Divinity School, where he also acted as the director of the school’s Global Center. Kurt and his wife, Vicki, reside in Grand Rapids and have three adult children.
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- 23 May 2021
The Fire of the Holy Spirit
The Scriptures present us with a variety of visible images which signify the presence and action of the Holy Spirit. These signs include wind, fire, breath, and rivers of living waters.
Signs of fire in Scripture signify in a special way God’s holy presence, power, and glory, as well as the purification and cleansing action of the Holy Spirit. Some examples include:
- The Burning Bush – Exodus 3
- The Pillar of Fire in the wilderness – Exodus 13:21-22
- The Consuming Fire on Mount Carmel – 1 Kings 18:17-40
- The Burning Coal that purified the lips of Isaiah the Prophet – Isaiah 6:6-7
- The Tongues of Fire at Pentecost – Acts 2:1-4
- God’s Consuming Fire in the new heavenly Jerusalem – Hebrews 12:22,28
When the Lord Jesus began his public ministry, the first thing that John the Baptist said about him was:
“He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire ”. (Matthew 3:11 and Luke 3:16).
What does it mean to be baptized with the fire of the Holy Spirit?
When the Holy Spirit comes he sets our hearts on fire with the love of Jesus Christ. Paul the Apostle tells us that,
“God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us”. (Romans 5:5).
When we surrender our lives to Jesus Christ, and pray for the Holy Spirit to be fully released in our lives, what happens – what does the Holy Spirit do?
- The Holy Spirit opens our ears to hear God’s voice – the Spirit enables God’s Word to come alive in us so that God’s word becomes a living and life-changing Word that is sharper than any two-edged sword – Paul the Apostle calls the Word of God the Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6).
- The Spirit opens our eyes to give us vision of what God is doing today in the Church, the world, and our personal lives. “Without vision the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18)
- The Spirit opens our minds to give us knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of God and his ways (Isaiah 11:2). Jesus said the Holy Spirit will teach us the truth and help us remember all that Christ has taught (John 14:26; 16:13).
- The Spirit opens our tongues to praise God and to speak his word with faith, conviction, and boldness and to encourage the fainthearted, the hopeless, and the weak.
- The Spirit anoints our hands to bring blessing, healing, comfort, and help to others.
- The Spirit equips our feet with speed and haste to bring the good news of the Gospel to every neighbor near and far.
- The Holy Spirit purifies our hearts and minds and sets us on fire with the love of Christ.
When Jesus began his ministry, he was led by the Holy Spirit to proclaim the good news of the kingdom to every village, town, and region of Israel. The Spirit gave force or power to every word Jesus spoke. The Spirit revealed the thoughts and intention s of people’s hearts to Jesus. The Spirit empowered Jesus to perform signs and wonders and miracles, and power to free people from Satan’s oppression in their lives.
We are Christ’s body – members of his church on the earth. Jesus calls us to do the same works he did and he equips us with spiritual gifts to carry on the work which he began.
Saint Theresa of Avila wrote:
“Christ has no body now but yours. No hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which he looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good. Yours are the hands through which he blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are his body. Christ has no body now on earth but yours.”
Outpouring of the Holy Spirit today
Why is God pouring out his Holy Spirit today, with signs, healings, and spiritual gifts? I believe one reason is that the Gospel and the Christian people are under unprecedented attack today.
We need spiritual power to counter this attack and to proclaim the Gospel in the joy and power of the Holy Spirit.
The charismatic renewal is a key part of God’s work to renew, restore, and equip God’s people to stand strong in faith and courage, to persevere with unwavering hope, and to be on fire with the love of Christ.
Our task is to make Jesus known and loved by all who will receive him and the good news of salvation he brings.
Our role in the charismatic renewal movement
We are first foremost disciples of Jesus – disciples who are personally committed to the Lord Jesus, to follow him and obey him and to submit to his word for our lives.
The Lord Jesus calls us to be servants just as he came “not to be served, but to serve.” As his servants who use their gifts, talents, and time to generously and selflessly serve others to help them grow in faith, hope, and love. We use our gifts, not to build up ourselves, but to build up the body of Christ and to advance his mission in the world.
The charismatic renewal is a sign of what God is bringing about through the gift of being baptized in the Holy Spirit. It is a visible public sign of the Lord’s work of renewal in bringing people into a revitalized relationship with God and a sign of the unity he desires for all of his people.
The Spirit unites, Satan divides. A true sign and fruit of charismatic renewal is love for our church – our church leaders and members, and for all believers who are brothers and sisters in Christ. A sign can’t do everything – but it can point to God and to the work of the Holy Spirit to renew the churches and to bring God’s people into greater unity and love for one another.
Some traps or pitfalls we must avoid
We don’t lead or serve to draw attention to ourselves, to gain esteem, praise, or applause. We serve in humility like John the Baptist who said, “He [Jesus] must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30).
Our reward comes from our Master Jesus Christ. He suffered abuse, mistreatment, and even rejection, and yet he loved his own to the very end (John 13:1), even those who rejected him and those who nailed him to the cross. Paul the Apostle said, “It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me” (Galatians 2:20).
Don Schwager is a member of the Servants of the Word and he is the editor of Daily Scripture . This article was adapted from Living Bulwark June-July 2015 issue . Used with permission.
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You and I have been called to experience the adventure of life in and with the Holy Spirit . We all need the Fire of the Holy Spirit in our lives. In fact, Ephesians 5:18 urges us to constantly be filled with the Spirit. If you are in a place of hunger for more, you will be blessed by this teaching entitled Fire of the Holy Spirit.
The role of the Holy Spirit is not an ‘optional extra’ for Christians; He is the very essence of our relationship with the Father and the means to accomplish what we have been called to do. We have generations of people that don’t know what it means to experience the Holy Spirit, and that in itself is heart-breaking. However, ordinary people filled with Fire can make all the difference .
I feel it is right to show you this life changing teaching and pray that the principles expressed in the teaching will take root in your life. For over four decades we as a ministry have seen the Holy Spirit radically transform people’s lives, bodies, relationships and circumstances. We’ve seen millions set on Fire from above and we want to see that same Fire released in your life.
FIRE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.”
So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt. ”But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” And God said, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.” Exodus 3:1-4 & 10-12
YOUR WILDERNESS IN LIFE – THE PERFECT CONDITIONS TO CATCH FIRE
The first thing I want you to notice is the location where Moses encountered the Fire of God. I want you to notice that it doesn’t say that when Moses encountered the Fire he was lying next to a lush green pasture next to a cool bubbling brook of water surrounded by lilies. It doesn’t say that he encountered the Fire of God sitting in a 5-star resort getting massages. The Bible says that when Moses encountered the Fire of God he was in the desert.
In fact, let me take it one step further, the Bible actually says that Moses was on the backside of the desert when he encountered the Fire of God. Now, how many of you know that the desert is a dry place, the desert is a thirsty place, the desert is a lonely place. Yet, this is the place where God chose to reveal himself to Moses through this burning bush of fire.
We all go through times of difficulty, we all face trials. Maybe as you sit and read this teaching you don’t feel the presence of God, maybe you’re going through the most challenging wilderness experience you’ve ever experienced. I have good news for you; the dryer a piece of wood is, the quicker it catches on fire .
Unlocking the Miraculous through FAITH and PRAYER binds the burning heart of an evangelist with the burdened heart of an intercessor.
THE FIRE COMES FIRST
The next thing I want you to notice about this story. This encounter Moses had was the precursor to Moses being sent to Pharaoh, and once Moses went to Pharaoh the greatest story of God’s deliverance and God’s supernatural power that has been recorded, possibly in history, began to unfold. It all started right there at that burning bush; and I see a principle here that is enduring. Before God sends you to Pharaoh, before God sends you to your destiny, before God sends you to do that thing that you were made to do, He is first going to send you to the Fire.
The Fire comes first, that encounter with the presence of God comes first. When Jesus was about to go to heaven He looked down at His disciples and He said I want you to go to Jerusalem, and what? Wait. I want you to go and wait. Now, think about this for a moment. These 12 men were the most experienced and educated and qualified men in things pertaining to Jesus Christ of anybody that has ever walked the earth. Who else got to spend 3 ½ years, every day and every night with Jesus? These men had a PhD in the Jesus Christ school of ministry. If they were alive today, I am sure that every denomination in the world would give them honorary credentials and I’m pretty sure that every Christian University would give them an honorary Doctorate. If ever anybody was qualified to go and preach about Jesus, it was those men. Yet, Jesus looked them square in the eye and said you’re not ready, go to Jerusalem and wait.
What did He say to wait for? It was the promise of the Father. Do you know what the promise of the Father was? It was the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Jesus knew that those men, if they were really going to be able to make a difference in the world, they were going to need the power of the Holy Ghost.
I’m convinced that when it comes to the infilling of the Holy Spirit, one of the main ingredients, if not the main ingredient is hunger. Just hunger! You can have what you want, you can have as much of God as you desire. Do you want Him today? Are you hungry for Him today?
LASTING FIRE OF THE SPIRIT
In Exodus 3:3 when Moses saw the bush he turned aside to see why the bush wasn’t burnt. I want you to notice that it was not the fact that there was a burning bush that impressed Moses so much. A lot of people don’t understand this, they think that it was some unusual sight, some unusual phenomenon and that was the reason Moses thought it was so interesting.
The Bible doesn’t say that Moses was interested because a bush was burning. In fact, there are indeed bushes in the wilderness that spontaneously combust. I’m sure that Moses had seen plenty of them, he had lived there for 40 years. He was interested because a bush kept on burning. I imagine it happened like this. Maybe one day Moses was walking through the wilderness with his sheep, following behind him and he passed this particular spot and looked over to his left side and there he saw the burning bush and he thought to himself, very interesting, one of those burning bushes and he kept going. On his way home that night with the sheep still following behind, he passed that spot and he looked and he saw it was still burning, he said wow, that is the toughest wilderness bush I have ever seen in my whole life and he kept walking.
The next week, Moses was on his way back on that trail again and when he came to that spot he looked and he said I could have sworn that was the same tree that was burning this time last week, but that’s impossible all these bushes look the same, and he kept walking. That night on his way home he saw it again and it was still burning. By this point Moses was starting to get curious, maybe he took some rocks piled them on the path and he said next week when I come back on this way I’m going to check that bush and see what’s happened to it. So he went home.
The next week as he was passing he saw that pile of rocks on the path, it reminded him. Oh yes, that bush was burning here and when he approached it he looked to his left side. Surprise, surprise, the bush was still burning. Maybe, it was at that point that Moses decided to turn aside to see what was going on with this bush.
I remember, when I was first filled with the Holy Spirit as a teenager. Well my friend, that was over 20 years ago now, and I have good news for you. I’m burning brighter today than I was back then and I believe 20 years from now, I will be burning brighter than I am today. The Fire of the Holy Ghost never goes out! Somebody said, ‘How do you keep the Fire burning?’ That’s the wrong way round, the Fire keeps me burning.
The Lord saw that Moses turned aside, that’s when the Lord spoke to him. People ask me all the time about how I hear God’s voice? Notice that the burning bush didn’t start shouting to Moses as he was walking by on the path taking care of his sheep.
The Holy Spirit is patient; He can wait for a long time. What is He waiting for? He’s waiting for you to turn aside and listen. People ask me, why is it that I don’t hear the voice of God? I think most of the time the answer is very simple, you are not listening. If you don’t believe me, let me ask you a question, a little diagnostic. When was the last time you sat in a room for 20 minutes quietly, without the television on, without the radio on, without praise and worship music on, without your mobile phone, without Facebook, without e-mail, you turned everything off and you sat there and said Holy Spirit I have no other agenda, I’m just here to listen, I’m not even here to talk, I’m not here to fill your ears with all of my needs, I’m just here to listen? When was the last time you did that?
DISTINGUISHED BY THE SPIRIT
So Moses turned aside and the Lord spoke to him. Now, I don’t know how many bushes there are in the wilderness, I assume there are a lot. One thing I do know is that there was only one bush in the wilderness that caught Moses’ attention. It was the one bush that was burning with the presence of the living God.
What is the world looking for? Are they looking for us to build nicer buildings? Are they looking for us to have more eloquent preachers? Are they looking for us to have better music? Or better marketing programmes? What is it they want? What we think is relevant to the world is completely irrelevant. We have just begun to become like them, sound like them and act like them, we never confront them, we never offend them, we think that we will win them by looking like them. The church has thought that we can convince the world that they need what we have, by looking, just like they look.
I tell you what we need, Elijah the Prophet discovered it thousands of years ago, when the people of Israel were serving their false God named Baal. Elijah stood up and he said today we have got to make a choice. I say it to you, we have got to make a choice. If Baal is god serve him, if money is your god then serve it, if popularity and acceptance is your god give your life to that, if partying and pleasure is god then live for that, but if Jehovah is God, Elijah said, then serve Him! This was the test, Elijah knew his God and he knew that the authentic God would be able to demonstrate His power.
Elijah said, ‘meet me on top of the mountain, bring all of your 700 prophets and I will stand there as one lonely man representing Jehovah, and we will find out whose God is the true God. The prophets of Baal began to dance and sing, try to call down the fire, Elijah was falling asleep. Not even a puff of smoke from Baal’s alter. After a while Elijah stood up, he said, ‘guys I hate to interrupt it looks like you’re having lots of fun. Don’t worry, maybe Baal is locked in the bathroom - it’s okay. I understand how it is, these gods are unpredictable. Maybe he’s gone on vacation.’ Then Elijah said, ‘Gentlemen before it gets too late, before the sun goes down let me pray. I don’t need a long time, I don’t need to scream and shout, I don’t need to cut myself, all I need to do is speak to God because He’s living.’
Elijah prayed, ‘Lord hear me, let these people know that you are God and that You’ve turned their hearts back to you in the fire.’ The Bible says fire fell from heaven, it consumed the sacrifice and the wood and the stones, it even lit up the water in the trench. Our God is a consuming fire! The world is not looking for pyrotechnics, they are not looking for Rock-n-Roll music, they are not looking for great entertainment. What they are looking for is the reality, the demonstration of the power of God and when they see it they will fall on their faces as the children of Israel did and begin to declare the Lord, He is God.
WHAT ARE YOU BURNING FOR?
This burns in me, we need revival in this nation. We have generations of people that don’t know what it means to experience the Holy Ghost, and it breaks my heart.
Some of us are way too dignified. Often caring too much about what people think or about how we look. If you care more about how you look than receiving the Holy Ghost then you are not hungry, that’s all I can say. A hungry man doesn’t give a flying leap what anybody else thinks. A hungry man has one agenda, to get that food and when you’re hungry for the Holy Ghost everything else in your life will come second to that. You will desire Him more than the air you breathe, you will desire Him more than the food you eat, you will desire Him more than your dignity, you will desire Him more than your reputation, you will desire Him more than your ministry, you will desire Him more than anything!
It is true that people will look at you and look down their nose and say it’s one of those crazy Pentecostals. Oh my friend, don’t worry, I’ll tell you what you do, let that unbelieving sceptic go to a football game. You follow that unbelieving mocker down to the stadium and watch as their team score the goal that wins the game in overtime. Then you will make a discovery, everybody burns! Some people burn for sports, some people burn for money, some people burn for popularity and power and sex and style and fashion. But everybody burns for something. The difference between us and them is that we burn for something that matters!
Yours in the harvest,
Evangelist Daniel Kolenda
PS. If you haven’t read my bestselling book ‘Live before You Die’ I would encourage you to purchase a copy today from our web shop.
God has a plan for everyone. Do you know yours?
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Exiting Egypt with only what they could carry, they were to change the world. Overnight, slave-Israel became a new nation totally different from the rest of the world. God gave them a reverse culture. This was to prepare and equip them to be his people. He said, “Do not learn the ways of the nations …” (Jeremiah 10:2).
The Gates of Hell will not Prevail
One of my favourite places in Israel is a place that’s known as Banias, known as Caesarea Philippi in the Bible. Today, it’s just a big ruin and archeological dig. But to this day, you can see how otherworldly and strange and mysterious it must have been in its time. The city was built on a huge rock foundation, nestled up against the side of a steep cliff at the foot of Mount Hermon.
You may have heard about Mount Hermon. In the Bible, it’s often associated with strange and creepy things – demonic things. It was famous for idolatry. In fact, more than 20 pagan temples have been excavated there so far. It was the place where Jeroboam built golden calves and shrines to pagan gods and led the northern kingdom of Israel into idolatry.
God’s Promises for Healing and Hope
I will never forget the first healing I witnessed with my own two eyes. I was a very young man preaching in India. After the message, I invited all who needed healing to the front of the field where I would lay my hands on them and pray in Jesus’ name. Soon a young lady stood before me. I instantly recognised her because I had noticed her weeping and praying earlier in the meeting. She got my attention because her voice was loud, hoarse, monotone, and out of synch with the movement of her mouth. I did not know her language, but I could tell she was deaf.
Evangelism By Fire
Jesus Christ is the Great Physician, who is on call day and night. His surgery never closes and we do not have to wait for an appointment. He specialises in all kinds of troubles, whether sickness of the soul, afflictions of the body, or the ills of society.
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Water into wine.
Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. - John 20:30-31
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“This secret of Jesus’ ministry has also characterised the lives of great men and women of God throughout history who discovered the incredible power of prayer.” – Daniel Kolenda
In what ways is the Holy Spirit like a fire?
30 Best Bible Scriptures on Fire of the Holy Spirit
Here are the 30 best Bible scriptures on fire of the Holy Spirit.
Matthew 3:11 I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Acts 2:3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.
Luke 3:16 John answered them all, saying, I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.
1 Thessalonians 5:19 Do not quench the Spirit.
1 Corinthians 12:13 For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.
Acts 1:5 For John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.
Acts 19:6 And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying.
Acts 2:39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.
Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Ephesians 4:30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
Ephesians 5:18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit.
John 14:16 “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever.”
John 14:17 “Even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.”
John 14:26 “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”
John 15:26 “But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.”
John 16:13 “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.”
John 16:14 “He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you.”
John 16:7 “Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.”
John 16:8 “And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment.”
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:34 For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure.
John 3:8 “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
Luke 24:49 “And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”
Revelation 4:5 From the throne came flashes of lightning, and rumblings and peals of thunder, and before the throne were burning seven torches of fire, which are the seven spirits of God.
Romans 5:5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
Romans 8:11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.
Romans 8:14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
Romans 8:16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.
Titus 3:5 He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.
More Bible Verses that Will Move You 50 Most Powerful Scriptures on Faith 60 Transcendent Verses on Trust 50 Strong Scriptures on Perseverance 68 Powerful Verses on Forgiveness 40 Uplifting Scriptures on Patience
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100 Bible Verses about Holy Spirit Fire
Matthew 3:11 esv / 54 helpful votes helpful not helpful.
“I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Hebrews 12:29 ESV / 45 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For our God is a consuming fire.
Acts 2:1-47 ESV / 43 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. ...
Acts 1:8 ESV / 38 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Luke 3:16 ESV / 29 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
John answered them all, saying, “I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Acts 1:5 ESV / 28 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
Revelation 8:5 ESV / 27 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth, and there were peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake.
John 14:17 ESV / 27 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
John 3:8 ESV / 19 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
Romans 8:11 ESV / 18 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.
Romans 8:9 ESV / 18 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
John 16:7 ESV / 17 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.
Acts 2:3 ESV / 16 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.
John 14:26 ESV / 16 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
Galatians 5:22-23 ESV / 15 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
1 Thessalonians 5:19 ESV / 14 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Do not quench the Spirit.
1 Corinthians 12:13 ESV / 14 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.
Romans 5:5 ESV / 13 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
John 6:27 ESV / 13 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.”
Titus 3:5 ESV / 12 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit,
2 Corinthians 13:14 ESV / 11 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
2 Corinthians 3:17 ESV / 11 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
Isaiah 4:4 ESV / 11 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and cleansed the bloodstains of Jerusalem from its midst by a spirit of judgment and by a spirit of burning.
Ephesians 4:30 ESV / 10 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
Galatians 3:27 ESV / 10 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
Luke 1:35 ESV / 10 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.
2 Peter 1:21 ESV / 9 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
Joel 2:28-29 ESV / 9 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Even on the male and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit.
Genesis 1:2 ESV / 9 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
Genesis 1:1 ESV / 9 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
2 Corinthians 1:22 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.
Romans 8:15 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
Romans 1:4 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord,
Acts 16:7 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And when they had come up to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them.
Luke 24:49 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”
Luke 12:49 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
“I came to cast fire on the earth, and would that it were already kindled!
Luke 11:13 ESV / 8 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
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!”
1 Peter 3:18 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,
Galatians 5:25 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
Acts 10:1-48 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort, a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God. About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God come in and say to him, “Cornelius.” And he stared at him in terror and said, “What is it, Lord?” And he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God. And now send men to Joppa and bring one Simon who is called Peter. ...
John 16:13 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.
John 15:26 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
“But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.
John 4:24 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 1:33 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’
Hebrews 1:7 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.”
1 Timothy 3:1-16 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God's church? ...
Colossians 3:23-25 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. For the wrongdoer will be paid back for the wrong he has done, and there is no partiality.
Ephesians 4:12 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
To equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ,
Ephesians 2:18 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.
John 14:16 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever,
Matthew 3:16 ESV / 6 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him;
Romans 1:20 ESV / 5 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
Acts 2:38-39 ESV / 5 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”
Isaiah 44:3 ESV / 5 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour my Spirit upon your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.
1 Thessalonians 5:23 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Thessalonians 4:7 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness.
Ephesians 5:18 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit,
Ephesians 4:3 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
Ephesians 2:4 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us,
Ephesians 1:17 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him,
Ephesians 1:13 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
Galatians 4:6 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”
2 Corinthians 4:4 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
1 Corinthians 14:1 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy.
1 Corinthians 12:7 ESV / 4 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.
1 John 4:6 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.
1 John 2:27 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie—just as it has taught you, abide in him.
1 John 2:20 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge.
Hebrews 13:8 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
2 Timothy 1:7 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.
2 Thessalonians 2:13 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.
1 Thessalonians 5:24 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.
Colossians 1:26 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
The mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to his saints.
Ephesians 6:18 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,
Ephesians 6:12 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Ephesians 4:29-32 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Ephesians 4:29 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
Ephesians 4:13 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,
Ephesians 4:11 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers,
Ephesians 4:11-13 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,
Ephesians 1:13-14 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
Galatians 5:16 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
Galatians 3:28 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Galatians 3:16 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many, but referring to one, “And to your offspring,” who is Christ.
Galatians 3:14 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
So that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith.
2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
2 Corinthians 4:13 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak,
2 Corinthians 4:7 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.
2 Corinthians 3:18 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
1 Corinthians 15:45 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Thus it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.
1 Corinthians 14:12 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
So with yourselves, since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel in building up the church.
1 Corinthians 14:3 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
On the other hand, the one who prophesies speaks to people for their upbuilding and encouragement and consolation.
1 Corinthians 14:2 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit.
1 Corinthians 13:1-13 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; ...
1 Corinthians 12:4-6 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.
1 Corinthians 12:1 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be uninformed.
1 Corinthians 12:1-31 ESV / 3 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be uninformed. You know that when you were pagans you were led astray to mute idols, however you were led. Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit. Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; ...
Revelation 22:17 ESV / 2 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.
Galatians 3:5 ESV / 2 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith—
1 Corinthians 13:10 ESV / 2 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful
But when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.
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Unless otherwise indicated, all content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License . All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles , a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Contact me: openbibleinfo (at) gmail.com. Cite this page : Editor: Stephen Smith. Publication date: Oct 15, 2023. Publisher: OpenBible.info.
The Holy Ghost and Fire
By ernest angley, august 1976.
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The Holy Ghost in Jesus’ Day
I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I…he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire (Matthew 3:11).
This verse in Matthew makes it clear that there is something to be received other than the baptism of the Holy Ghost—the fire of the Spirit. The fire is the anointing of the Spirit, something we all need. To receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a commandment of Jesus, but it should never be looked upon as the end of your spiritual growth. Growth in the Lord is an ever increasing, ever deepening process. Without the anointing, or fire, of the Spirit in your life, your spiritual growth will be greatly hindered. After receiving the baptism of the Spirit don’t sit complacently in a corner to await the coming of the Lord. Rather, yield to that fire so that it can prepare and direct you in the great work for souls in this final hour. The Holy Spirit is your power for service.
The Babe of Bethlehem didn’t appear to have a baptism of fire to offer anyone. Years later even the disciples did not understand that fire. Jesus said, I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him (John 14:16,17). But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost…shall teach you all things (John 14:26). The disciples listened to Jesus. They wanted what He was speaking about, yet they were unable to separate the Holy Ghost from Jesus. Many people today cannot make that distinction, either. Christ is the Son of God. The Holy Spirit, also called the Holy Ghost, is the third person in the Trinity of the Godhead. We live in the Holy Ghost dispensation which will close when the Bride of Christ is taken from the earth at the second coming of the Lord. The Holy Ghost will leave the earth along with those who will be gathered to Jesus in that catching-away time. The Holy Ghost is here now on a divine mission: to prepare the Bride of Christ for the Rapture, for Jesus the Groom. Be alive in the Spirit, aware of the great power with which the Spirit is moving on the earth today.
Paul had a stubborn temper, a temper he kept under the subjection of the Holy Spirit. You can discover much about him by studying what he had to say. At one place we find him writing a letter to a group of people lest he be too harsh when he saw them in person—that indicates temper! Paul’s temper was too stubborn to allow the devil to push him around. Are you beaten down by the devil; have you learned to use your temper against him? Lucifer tries to get you to blame others for what he brings about. Put the blame where it belongs—on him. Hate the devil that influences people to act in cruel and dishonest ways.
Surrender completely to the fire of the Holy Spirit; do not be afraid of it. Simon did not know how to yield, but in the Upper Room he stayed until he was baptized in the Holy Spirit, until he had that great power within. Jeremiah described the Lord’s word in his heart as “fire shut up in his bones.” Anyone who has ever experienced this wonderful power of the Holy Spirit knows what Jeremiah was talking about. For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people (Isaiah 28:11). And yet, even with the fiery tongue, there will be many who will not hear.
“Without me,” Jesus told the disciples, “ye can do nothing.” When Jesus finished His work on earth, God sent the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost (John 14:26). Accept in your own heart that you need what Jesus said you must have. The instructions He gave the disciples are for all His followers. Jesus commanded them to tarry until they received power from On High, and that same commandment holds true for His followers today. Jesus stressed the Holy Ghost; He was concerned that His children go on to receive the baptism of the Spirit. It was so important that His last message to mankind on earth just before He ascended into Heaven was about receiving the Holy Ghost (Acts 1).
Simon wanted to walk like Jesus to the degree that he even stepped out on the waters. He walked with nothing under him but water and sheer faith. Oh, yes, he sank, but first he walked. Simon tried to imitate Jesus and was broken-hearted to find he had failed. Why did he fail? Because imitation was not good enough. And if you are not aflame with the baptism of fire, you, too, are failing Him again and again. The baptism of fire must burn within you, the anointing of the Holy Spirit will make Christ come alive in your innermost being so that you will not be an imitation of Him. You will have HIM on the inside—no longer will you be striving to work for Him in your own strength. Jesus, through the power of the Holy Ghost, will be working through you. Perhaps it is not within your own ability to be a witness for the Lord, but the Holy Ghost is able to be that witness when He lives IN you and you let Him work THROUGH you. The Holy Ghost can witness, preach, pray—all you need do is yield yourself to Him.
Simon in the Upper Room knew he was weak—blessed is the man who knows his own weaknesses; blessed is the man who is able to feel his weaknesses, for then he will know the importance of the Master’s strength in his life. The Holy Ghost fell on Simon and the others. A drastic change came into Simon’s life. Not long before, he had denied Jesus to three people; but now boldly he stood before a multitude crying, ”YOU crucified Him! YOU crucified Him!” Three thousand souls were added to the Kingdom that day. How did this change happen to Simon? Suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance (Acts 2:2-5). It filled the house and it filled Simon; Simon received the fiery tongue. Simon found a power that enabled him to do the things of the Lord in the way Jesus had taught. Simon wanted to see the power of the Spirit move the way it did for Jesus: the blind to receive sight, the deaf hearing and the sick to be made well. The anointing of fire made those things happen through Simon, too.
The Holy Ghost in the Old Testament
The Old Testament is filled with types and shadows of things to come. One of the most beautiful of all the stories of the power of the Holy Ghost is told in the lives of Elisha and Elijah. Elijah, full of the power of God—Holy Ghost power—was used by God in a truly miraculous way. Elijah cast his mantle upon Elisha, and Elisha followed him from then on. For seven years Elisha watched the power of God in action through Elijah’s life. Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee said Elijah. And Elisha answered, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me (II Kings 2:9). When you receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost, you have that double portion if you completely yield to Him. There are many, although they have the Holy Ghost, the Holy Ghost does not have—they do not yield all the way to Him. Even before God created man, the Holy Ghost was working: And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters (Genesis 1:2). God said, “Let it be,” and the Holy Ghost went into operation. Realize how greatly the Holy Ghost moved in Old Testament times. Know that now, in the Holy Ghost dispensation, He will work in an even greater way, for now He has more liberty to work and more work to do. Because the Holy Ghost can do anything, Jesus said, All things are possible to him that believeth (Mark 9:23). If you are afraid, if you fear life, then you are not yet in that place with God where you must be. Walking in that place God wants you to travel is walking without fear; you know everything will be all right. Paul knew that if he died it would be gain for him.
The Spirit of the Lord was in Joseph’s life. When Pharaoh called Joseph out of the dungeon because he had heard Joseph could interpret dreams, Joseph answered, It is not in me: GOD shall give Pharaoh an answer of peace (Genesis 41:16). Joseph took none of the glory for the work the Holy Ghost was about to do through him; all the glory went to God. The Holy Ghost moved on a man, giving the interpretation to a heathen king’s dream. The tongue of fire spoke God’s truth.
Later in the Old Testament, we find God filling the workers with wisdom and knowledge to make the tabernacle and the things in it. And thou shalt speak unto all that are wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom (Exodus 28:3). (Read also Exodus 31:3 and Exodus 35:31.) The Lord gave workers in the Old Testament this wisdom and knowledge, and the Lord overshadowed my wife, Angel, and me to give knowledge of what He wanted in the building of Grace Cathedral. It was an astounding experience for us! The works that the Holy Ghost did in Old Testament days, He will do today.
The Lord not only told Moses what to do and how to do it, but He enabled Moses and the elders of Israel to give just judgments. The Holy Ghost anointed the minds of those people so that they could give the judgment of God. I say again, that was not a Holy Ghost age, but still He worked in a marvelous way. We who live in the Holy Ghost dispensation can expect Him to move even greater in our day with His anointing of fire. First, however, we must know what God wants.
The Holy Ghost gave Moses fantastic physical strength. Read of it in the eleventh chapter of Numbers. Moses became impatient with the complaints, the ups and downs of the Israelites; and the Lord took enough power from the Holy Spirit that was in Moses’ life to supply SEVENTY other men. That was a fantastic anointing! Moses yielded to the anointing of the Lord and it grew stronger. Too many today are baptized in the Spirit and think that is the end of it all. Yield to Him until He can use you in any way He wants, day or night; yield by prayer, fastings and living in the Word.
The Holy Ghost Today
Have you received that tongue of fire yet or are you afraid, backing away because someone has wrongly instructed you about it? Acts 2:39 tells us that EVERYONE today can have the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. You must have the fire of God in this last and final hour: the trials, the pressures and sins that come against men now are harsh and deadly. More than ever we need to hold to God’s promise, where sin abounded, grace did much more abound (Romans 5:20). God’s grace will make those who yield to Him more than conquerors. Is there a dryness in your life? Then yield to the kindling of that Spirit of fire; let it blaze out through your life to direct your path in the footsteps of Jesus. How marvelous that the same Holy Spirit that Simon received is available to you today! Let Him possess you completely—be possessed by Him, completely under His control. Let the Holy Ghost possess you to the point He can think through your mind, speak with your tongue. Don’t be afraid of God; in Him is your safety. Let the blood of Jesus stand between you and the enemy, holding him back.
If you honestly and sincerely seek the things of God, you can have them. Those who get in trouble are the hypocrites, the ones who are dishonest in their hearts toward God. Rather than wanting God to use them, they want to use His power for their own purposes and to elevate themselves in the eyes of men. God will not move for people like that, but the devil will. You cannot make a mockery of the things of God and still be His child. However, if you sincerely want the things of God because you love Him, He will answer. Jesus said that parents do not give stones to their children when they ask for bread—how much more does the heavenly Father know how to give the Holy Spirit to those that ask? The Lord gives only holy gifts. If you are God’s property, the devil has no claim on you whatsoever. Use that fiery tongue; hold up the blood-stained banner and tell the story of Jesus without compromise. “YOU crucified Him!” thundered Simon, and multitudes fell to their knees.
The fiery tongue under the power of the Spirit will make men’s hearts burn within them. That fiery tongue is meant to be used by every child of God—this is the hour for the fiery tongue. The greatness of His power is being poured out in this final hour. All over the world people are becoming aware of the need of the baptism of the Holy Ghost. Never has there been an hour such as this! We needn’t be concerned about the enemy; nothing can stand against the power of the Holy Ghost in this hour. He wants many witnesses to tell of His greatness. Call on Him in perfect faith, for those who are faithful will see miracle after miracle. The impact of your fiery anointing will do much to win the lost. Know what manner of spirit you carry at all times; you cannot afford to be deceived about yourself in any way. That fiery anointing will not rest upon you if you are deceived. Keep your eyes on Jesus and His greatness. Don’t delight yourself because you are being blessed; delight yourself because you, through that fiery anointing, are blessing others. Joy will come as you delight yourself in your Lord, bowing down to His will the way Jesus did. Let His voice thunder in your ears when you’re discouraged. Behold His hand of power that separated the waters of the Red Sea, and know that you have hold of that same hand. He is the God of all flesh and He walks with you daily; call at any time upon the name of His Son, Jesus, and He will hear. He calls you into His arms to give you His faith, love, strength and anointing of fire so that He can be poured out to others through you. Receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost and yield to the molding and the shaping of His fire in your life.
AUGUST, 1976, ERNEST ANGLEY, founder & editor in chief, Vol. 21, No. 4, The Power of the Holy Ghost USPS 516-050) is published bimonthly by Grace Cathedral, 1055 Canton Road, Akron, Ohio, 44312. Periodicals postage paid at Akron, Ohio, and additional offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Power of the Holy Ghost, P.O. Box 1790, Akron, Ohio, 44309.
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