Crosses             LBG                  HateLove

Devotional - week of January 5, 2003


A GIFT FOR JESUS

I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!”  Luke 12:49

The fire Jesus came to send is the Holy Spirit. The day Jesus “poured out” the Holy Spirit on the 120 in the upper room, “… there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:19 Paul writes, “Do not quench the Spirit”—the word “quench” indicating the Spirit as a fire.

In chapters 14, 15, and 16 of John, Jesus tells the disciples that He will send the Holy Spirit to live in them—and informs them of things the Spirit will do in, for, and through them.

Jesus knew that the quality of life experienced by his disciples at the time was a poverty-stricken existence compared to the quality of life “the fire” would produce.

So He said:

… and how I wish it were already kindled!

The day of Pentecost had to be one of fulfilling joy to the heart of Jesus. He knew that the fire He had sent would change everything for his disciples.

That same fire fills the life of each new believer, bringing great joy to Jesus Who made it possible.

Paul’s charge not to “quench the Spirit,” however, reveals that believers can reduce the blaze of the fire into smoldering embers.

Jesus, Who is “… the same yesterday, today, and forever” must look at some believers and churches and say, Oh, how I wish the fire I sent were burning brightly in them now, but they seem willing to live on with the smoldering embers.

That fire will burn brightly in individuals and churches that will experience crucifixion, burial, and resurrection—releasing the fire of the Holy Spirit.

Individuals and churches that release the fire of the Spirit present a fulfilling gift to the Lord Jesus—Who made it possible.