Has Jesus baptized you with the Holy Spirit and fire? Many of us have been baptized with the baptism John the Baptist facilitated – the baptism of repentance to salvation in Christ.
But what about the baptism John told us Jesus would baptize us with – the baptism of the Holy Spirit and with fire?
“With water I baptize those who repent of their sins; but someone else is coming, far greater than I am, so great that I am not worthy to carry his shoes! He shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” Matthew 3:11 The Living Bible
Perhaps you felt the fullness and the fire of God at one time or many years ago, but how about today? Has your love and passion for God burned out? Has your love for God and your desire to worship Him been extinguished by the fiery trials of 2020? Has your love and empathy for others grown cold too? Has your fire to follow and feast on His Word and His presence dwindled to a vapor of smoke, or perhaps only ashes now remain of what was once a burning flame.
Our God is a consuming fire. 🔥
He desires to consume us with His love, His Truth, a passion for His presence through worship, and a passion to see others experience His love and power too.
His LOVE never fails.
His TRUTH transforms.
His POWER redeems and restores.
Love and fire are both powerful. The love of God and the fire of the Holy Spirit are supernatural and they empower us to live as powerful overcomers no matter our circumstances. The power of the Holy Spirit enables us to be bold in our witness. This is not a quiet or timid faith that never speaks about the Lord in our homes, in our communities, or among our friends and relatives.
“…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere…” – Acts 1:8
“…the godly are as bold as lions.” Proverbs 28:1
Obviously in 2020, we witnessed the opposite of the love and firepower of the Holy Spirit among those who are consumed with hatred, greed, anger, fear, foolishness, and deception (and the list goes on). We are definitely witnessing a lot more boldness from the not so godly. May the Jesus loving fiery followers arise, shine and overcome every spirit of darkness and every evil agenda for such a time as this.
Lord, awaken more fiery witnesses filled with Your love and boldness for such a time as this.
Could it be that many of us, who claim to be part of the city set on a hill, the lamp of the Lord, the Church, are still consumed with much of the wrong things too?
The baptism of the fire of the Holy Spirit will be evident by hearts ablaze and overflowing with the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. As we let the Father’s holy fire consume us, His Spirit will burn away the ugliness of our flesh and leave the beautiful gold within us shining brightly as the light of the world we faithful followers are called to be.
Hopefully, 2020 helped us all shake off, separate from and burn away some unnecessary things we no longer need to carry into 2021. Hopefully, 2020 purged some impurities and brought more refining to those of us who desire to truly follow Jesus no matter what joy or suffering this life brings.
We will overflow with whatever consumes us.
We need to be consumed by the fuel that inspires and ignites us to burn bright in the midst of the darkness, instead of the fuel that dissipates our firepower and destroys our love for God and others.
We have experienced a shaking, a sifting, and now the sweltering fiery trials continue. We are not to be surprised (1 Peter 4:12-19). These fiery trials are being used to burn away the impurities of our motives, extinguish the idols of our hearts, and ignite the radiant brightness of our Father’s glory planted within. We are being refined by the Refiner’s fire to radiate His love, grace and glory.
So, for 2021, what will consume you?
Will it be the love of your Holy Father? Will His holy fire consume and burn away complacency, compromise and casual Christianity? Will your heart be ignited to burn with zeal for the Constant One who knows you better than anyone else, but still loves you unconditionally?
Will you be a bold, bright flame spreading His LOVE and LIGHT to others?
Will you be consumed with the Father’s love and passion for His purposes in the world, in His church, and for all people to experience the “great joy” and “peace” Jesus came to bring all people? The joy and peace people all over the world desire to experience, but eludes most who are often looking for joy and peace in all the wrong practices, people and places.
What was Jesus passionate about? Being about His Father’s business and about loving and liberating people to follow Him and not dead religious practices and principles. As we follow the Truth in His Word, we overcome all the lies and power of the enemy and are free to experience the abundant life Jesus spoke of in John 10:10.
Is this abundant life alive within me and overflowing for others to see?
The Father’s business is about building and spreading His kingdom that will never be shaken. Jesus came to bring us the “good news” over all the “bad news” – wow, do we need more of this in 2021! We are called to overcome evil with good. The only One who is truly good is God. We need the goodness of the Spirit of Jesus working in and through us in these dark and evil days. Yes, amen.
“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who replace darkness with light and light with darkness, who replace bitter with sweet and sweet with bitter.”Isaiah 5:20 The Passion Translation
Yes, we have seen a lot of this in 2020, but, again, this goes back to what we are consumed with.
Again, whatever consumes and fills us, will overflow through us.
Lord, help us return to what You define as good, true and lovely and worthy of praise. Lord, help us return to the light of Your Word.
In 2021, Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:33 still hold true – above all else, seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (or His right way of living based on His Word and not our own thoughts or ways). The kingdom of God is all about righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Jesus demonstrated the Father’s heart as He walked the earth…
…sharing the good news of the gospel,
…opening blind eyes to clearly see,
…setting sin bound hearts truly free,
Joy to the world, The Lord has come, and
The Lord’s favor is over His remnant for such a time as this.
Father God, baptize us with a fresh baptism of LOVE and the passionate FIRE of God. May all Your sons and daughters burn with zeal and passion to love and worship You, Jesus, the One True God, in this new year of 2021. 🙏❤️🔥
I challenge you. Look up these verses referenced below.
More Consumption of The Word of God, which is Jesus, over the words of the wayward and worldly minded, will keep us freshly baptized with the LOVE and the FIRE of the Holy Spirit.🔥
May God’s fiery and fierce love for us and for others and the firepower of His Holy Spirit take us higher. May the LOVE and the FIRE of His holy and eternal flame forever burn in us. May His fiery lovers burn brighter than all the darkness around us for such a time as this. Amen!
“I will bring that group through the fire and make them pure. I will refine them like silver and purify them like gold. They will call on my name, and I will answer them.” Zechariah 13:9
“Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you. Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in His suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing His glory when it is revealed to all the world.”
1 Peter 4:12-13
Hebrews 12:28-29; Matthew 5:8-9, 14-16, 19:17; Galatians 5:13-26; Luke 2:10; Mark 12:29-31; John 1:1-5, 4:23-24, 5:19, 16:33; Romans 8:37-39, 12:21, 14:17; Ephesians 2:14-18; Philippians 4:8-9; Isaiah 48:10-11; Isaiah 60:1-5