The Fire of God
God is holy. "...our God is a consuming fire" (Heb.12:29). But God wants you
also to be holy (1 Peter 1: 16), and He wants His holy fire to burn in you also.
THE BURNT OFFERING
Firstly, in the Tabernacle of God spoken of in the Book of Exodus, the fire of
God burnt upon the brazen altar on which was offered the burnt offering, the first of
the offerings. "... This is the law of the burnt offering: It is the burnt offering,
because of the burning upon the altar all night unto the morning, and the fire of the
altar shall be burning in it The fire shall ever be burning upon the altar; it shall never
go out" (Lev .6:9, 13).
This burnt offering showed the complete surrender, consecration, obedience
and devotion of Christ to the Father. Everything was burnt to ashes (v.1 0). The
ashes signified that the fire had made full appropriation. There was nothing more
left, which could be burnt. God had received fully what He wanted. Do you know,
beloved, how this fire of devotion and full consecration was burning and burning in
the life of the Lord Jesus? Is it burning in your life also? Do you also want to be burnt
to ashes? In suffering, sorrow, sickness, opposition, persecution, misunderstanding
and in a multitude of other painful situations, does that fire of devotion to God burn
continually and ever increasingly in you? Are you willing to become completely
humbled and exhausted of all natural strength and reduced to ashes? Are you willing
to serve your Lord without asking for a reward, without a murmur, without a sigh?
Note that the fire upon the altar had to burn always. Do you forget the Lord
sometimes and go after worldly pleasure? Do you get discouraged and drop away
sometimes from the work which the Lord has given you? The fire has to burn always
and go on burning until that blessed morning when the Sun of righteousness will
arise and the Lord will come (Mal.4:2).
May the Lord find in you and in me something of that full satisfaction which
He found in the fire of the burnt offering in the life of His beloved Son.
Secondly, the fire of God burnt upon the golden altar of incense. The smoke
of the incense stands for the prayer of the saints (Rev.5:8; 8:3,4). It ascended up
before God out of the angel's hand. That angel represents the High Priest Aaron who
had to burn perpetual incense before the Lord (Ex.30:8). We also have a High Priest
Who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners and made higher than the
heavens, Who ever liveth to make intercession for us (Heb.7: 25,26).
Do you know, beloved, how the fire of prayer and intercession burned in the
life of our Lord? He often continued all night in prayer (Luke 6:12). He prayed with
strong crying and tears (Heb.5: 7). Does that fire of prayer and intercession burn in
your life also? Consider the prayer life of Paul (Gal.4: 19) and of Epaphras his coworker (Col.4: 12).
If you neglect your prayer life you are sinning against the Lord (1 Sam.
12:23). Quench not the Spirit (1Thess.5: 19). May the incense of fervent prayer and
intercession ascend up daily in your life unto the Lord.
Thirdly, the fire of God burned upon the seven lamps of the golden
candlestick. These are the lamps of testimony. Jesus is the light of the world, and
God wants you also to shine as lights in this world of darkness. "...ye shall be
witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the
uttermost part of the earth" (Acts 1 :8). If the fire of God is burning upon your altar
of consecration and if the incense of your prayer and intercession is ascending before
God out of the angel's hand, then it will be easy for you to be the Lord's faithful
witness in your home, and in your locality, in your school, office, hospital, or factory.
The fire of God will burn in your heart and the light of God will shine upon your face.
But note also there are seven lamps upon one candlestick. This shows that in
God's plan, our testimony should not only be individual, but it should also be a
corporate one. As children of God, born into God's family by the experience of new
birth, we all belong to one Church, that is, to "the general assembly and church of
the first born, which are written in heaven" (Heb.12: 23). The life and the light and
the love of God bind us all together into one bundle. If God's people know this how
glorious would be the light which shines out from His people. Please read what the
Lord prayed in John 17:20-23.
As the fire of God continues to burn in you, you will not be happy until you
come into the unity of the Spirit with other children of God. May God's holy fire burn
continually in you.