Got the Fire?
“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 (Greek here can be translated in, with or by) 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.” (Matthew 3;11-12 NASB)
Man’s baptism is the public statement that a sinner is turning to Jesus for salvation. The sign of a repentant heart now filled with hope. John the Baptist’s job was to get men ready for a different kind of baptism. God gave him the words to say, “Prepare the way of the Lord, Make His paths straight!” Instructions! Something man was to do. Now I will leave it to you to determine John’s meaning.
Baptized by Jesus with the Holy Spirit and fire.
What is the fire in Jesus’ baptism? First, let Scripture describe who will be saved. “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.” (Romans 10:9-11 NASB)
Belief that “results in righteousness”
With heartfelt belief in everything Jesus said and confessing Him as our Lord we come to recognize the fire that purifies our soul. This fire burns away the dross of habitual and continual sin. His is a refining fire perfecting our faith through trials and tribulations. Look around and look within, when we repent Jesus baptizes. Got the fire? Is it burning the dross and refining your faith. An unpleasant but necessary born-again reality.
Thank You, Jesus.