Tag Archives: pentecostal

Churches Calling for Fire from Heaven–But Be Careful: God Is a Consuming Fire

Thousands of sincere people in churches across the land are asking every week, crying aloud to the heavens, that God would send His fire down, igniting a revival in the church.  Not just charismatic, pentecostal, full-gospel, and bible-churches are doing this, but many main stream denominational churches are, too.

But do they know exactly what they are asking?  God is not just a fire; He “is a consuming fire” [1].  Most of the sheep in the pews do not realize that the judgement of this fire first falls on them; it starts with the house of God, His body, His church.  The apostle Peter warns us of the fiery trial of our faith: “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” [2].

“The fiery trial” is when God comes to us to purify us, which means that there is something in us that needs to be gotten rid of. 

God is fire; He is also the Word made flesh.  So the fire is His word.  And He will send His word through His five fold ministry offices.  These are His true apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers.  They are a gift of God to congregations for their perfection and edification, “till we all come in the unity of the faith…unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” [3].

And God will speak through them, and His word, like a fire shut up in their bones, will blast as a refining fire burning away the dross and impurities.  This will be a fiery trial–the getting rid of the childish things that are clung to.  Eventually, the blankies, pacifiers, and rattlers must be put away on the road to spiritual perfection.

Just like the prophet elijah

Elijah is a type of this.  He came and exposed Israel’s sin and corruption at the highest level, demanding them to repent.  But they just could not “abide the day of his coming” [4].  He was a fire burning up their impurities.  But what did the children of Israel do to him and other prophets?  They hunted them down like dogs, tortured them, and chased them into “dens and caves of the earth” [5].

They were persecuted by the very people they were trying to help.  For few want to change so badly that they will submit to the correction of God’s word of fire–especially spoken through just another man, who they feel is really no better than they are.  Anyway, “who made you a ruler and judge over us, Moses?” [6].

God, the consuming fire from heaven, wants to burn out the impurities of false doctrines, concepts and teachings about Him and His plan.  We are told to “purge out the old leaven that the lump may be holy.”

But who will be able to bear it–the correction, instruction and reproof–that the fire brings?  This is what the fire-word of God brings.  It cleanses and purifies His children, until they are no longer alive just to receive God’s “feel-good spirit.”

Joy, peace, and love will come, for they are the fruit of the Spirit.  But the true fruit of the Spirit takes time to develop, grow, and mature.  And few modern Christians have any aspirations to wait very long for it.  And so that is what keeps them coming back week after week, crying out for God’s fire, thinking that it is a feel-good spirit, not knowing that His word is like a fire that purges out all unrighteousness. 

But that is the nature of children.  They are mostly alive for what they can receive from their Father.  As Paul said, “And yet I show unto you a more excellent way” [7].  It is the way to complete the life cycle of God in you–the way to perfection.  KWH

  1. Deut 4: 24; Heb. 12: 29
  2. I Pet. 4: 12, 17-18
  3. Eph. 4: 11-13
  4. Mal. 3: 2
  5. Heb. 11: 34-38
  6. Acts 7: 27
  7. I Cor. 12: 31

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Filed under apostles' doctrine, body of Christ, church, false doctrines, gifts of the Spirit, old leaven, Spiritual Life Cycle

“Speaking in Tongues” Is Speaking in Other Real Languages–Not Gibberish

Many long for the true Pentecost experience that the early disciples had.  Rightfully so, for we should.  But many long so much that they are receptive to a counterfeit experience, which is part of the “strong delusion” sent out in these latter days.  But is their “speaking in tongues” the same experience that the early apostles had?

Now I know that this may deeply offend many sincere believers who have been swept away in the tide of glossolalia inundating the globe.  How can it be wrong if so many are doing it, some would ask.  “Few there be to find this way of truth,” Christ said.  So beware of what the “many” are doing.

Studying It Out with an Open Mind

Putting aside pre-conceived ideas and traditions, we must go to the scriptures and see what they say in plain English about the subject.  He will reveal His truth to the thirsty and sincere and will pour out His Spirit to them (Isaiah 44: 3).

In Acts 2, the early apostles did not utter syllables that no one could understand.  No!  They spoke in other actual languages.  In fact, the feast goers present in Jerusalem from “every nation under heaven…heard them speak in his own language” (2: 4-6).  These were “devout men,” who were amazed that the Galilean fishermen were speaking in their language.  To emphasize this fact, fifteen different specific languages are listed (v. 9-11).

Filled with the Spirit

So what happened exactly?  Peter explained that this is what the prophet Joel foresaw.  “I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and daughters shall prophesy” (v. 17).

The apostles were not just longing anymore to have an experience with God.  They were filled with the Holy Spirit, and God was speaking through them.  They were vehicles of His words to those without.  God was speaking miraculously, expressing His truth through them in another language!  That is a miracle because Christ’s disciples could not have spoken any of those languages, for they had never even heard them spoken.

A Practical Miracle

The disciples on the day of Pentecost were not in their own little worship world.  Nor were they exulting in a unintelligible form of religious ecstasy.  God was using them to speak to others in their own language.  It was a practical miracle performed by God through His servants.  God needed to convey His truth–through those who knew it–to others who did not speak the same languages as His servants.

So God literally took over their tongues and miraculously spoke through Peter, James, and John and the others.

One of the “Gifts of the Spirit”

This ability to speak in another person’s language is one of the “gifts of the Spirit” outlined in I Corinthians 12: 10.  “Divers kinds of tongues” are different kinds of languages.  Tongues are languages.

And I must be honest.  I do speak English and Spanish.  But I have never been taken over by the Holy Spirit and had my mouth speak other foreign languages to people.  Wow.  That would be something.  Other gifts of the Spirit I have been blessed to have received (or rather, to have been a channel of that gift): “word of wisdom, word of knowledge, faith”–but not different languages flowing by His Spirit through my mouth.

But someday God will use this gift again.  Someday His sons and daughters will be sent to foreign lands, and He will need to speak to the people there.  And God will speak through His surrendered servants and will pour out through them comforting words about His soon coming kingdom.  And He will comfort them with words in their own language.   Kenneth Wayne Hancock


Filed under gifts of the Spirit, glossolalia, speaking in tongues