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Godfire - a Word Study

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Lazarus Short, Jan 2, 2020.

  1. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    Keep in mind that the following was written as a book chapter...

    GODFIRE

    I keep coming up against fire in the Bible as being part of God’s plan and even of His essence, so this chapter will be a word study on fire and related words: fire, firebrand, firebrands, firepans, fires, flame, burn, burned, burneth, burning, burnings and burnt. Most instances did not bear on the subject, but enough did to carry the theme. Instances of natural fire will get little attention, as we will focus on supernatural fire, or as I shall call it, Godfire.

    We see fire for the first time in Genesis 3:24 – it mentions a flaming sword which prevents Adam and Eve (flesh) from access to the Tree of Life. It is a theme we will see again, especialy in the NT, where it is formally stated that flesh and blood cannot inherit in the Kingdom.

    We see fire next in Genesis 15:17 – the smoking oven and burning lamp which pass between the divided carcasses Abram had laid out before God. It was a sign of Abram’s coming inheritance.

    In Genesis 19:24, Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed by fire and brimstone, aka, sulfur. In ancient times, sulfur was used as to drive evil spirits away, so they believed, and as a general fumigant. Along with fire, it was a purifying agent. In fact, the Greek word for “fire” is transliterated as “pur.”

    Then in Exodus 3:2-5, we see the Burning Bush, from which God spoke to Moses. That bush may be there yet, but the important thing to note is that the Fire did not consume it. Moses was forbidden to approach, so again, flesh was denied access.

    As part of the ten plagues on Egypt, there was (Exodus 9:23-24) hail, thunder and fire...but note that the damage was by the hail, not the fire.

    On the way out of Egypt, God gave Israel a pillar of fire at night, not only to lead them, but to give them light (Exodus 13:21-22). So you see, it was a good thing. Later, the same pillar was not good for the Egyptians who were pursuing Israel through the gap in the Red Sea, as we see in Exodus 14:24. Mind the gap!

    In Midian, back home for Moses, and probably in the vicinity of that special bush, God descended on His mountain with smoke and fire, as we see in Exodus 19:18. No threat was expressed or implied – it was just how the presence of God was manifested.

    Exodus 24:17 states that “...the sight of the glory of the LORD was like a devouring fire...in the eyes of...Israel.” Note that this verse does NOT say it was a devouring fire, but that it simply appeared so to those who saw it.

    The very last verse of Exodus mentions the cloud and the fire above the Tabernacle, and it was simply the presence of God.

    The Book of Leviticus mentions fire many times, always in connection with the natural fire of the Tabernacle, but it is worth mentioning that the altar fire was never to go out, as we see in 6:13. Looking at the whole system of animal sacrifice in Leviticus, it becomes clear that it shows us the way for flesh to come to God: it must go into the fire.

    Also, among all the many mentions of fire having to do with sacrifices, we have Leviticus 9:24, describing a supernatural fire consuming the offering and the fat. Then, in 10:1-2, we see Nadab and Abihu coming before God with incense and “strange fire,” and God answered with fire, killing both of them. The account says they were “devoured,” but their dead bodies had to carried outside the camp.

    Later, more were devoured. As we move on to Numbers 11:1-2, we see that when God became angry with Israel, He sent among them the same fire that killed Nadab and Abihu, but Moses intervened, as he often did.

    Later still, 250 followers of Korah were devoured by fire from God, as we see in Numbers 16:35. Rebellion or not, the fires in the censers of the 250 were said by God to be holy (verse 37). This fire is mentioned again in Psalm 106:18.

    We see something of interest in 31:22-23, in which metals are purified
    with water like other things, but are also purified with fire – because they can endure the fire. Compare this with First Corinthians, chapter 3, verses 12 thru 15.
     
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  2. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    In Deuteronomy, we see in 4:11-15 how God spoke from the fire on the mountain, as He spoke from the fire in the bush. Then in verse 24 we are told, “For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.” We can take this as a statement of His nature – also see verses 33 and 36.



    In chapter five, Moses mentions fire in verses 4 and 5, just before he recites the ten commandments. In verses 22-26, God’s Voice is spoken of, along with fire, clouds and thick darkness.



    Fire again, in chapter 9, verses 3,10,15 and 21 – also 10:4 and 18:16.



    In 32:22, we have this: “For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest hell [sheol], and shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains.” This might refer to the Lake of Fire.



    We see a bit of God’s fire in Judges 6:21, as it consumed Gideon’s offering.



    There is an interesting story in I Samuel 30:1-19, in which the town of Ziklag is burned and the families of David and his men were taken captive. They were grieved, but managed to recover everything and then some. The lesson is that the town was burned, but the people in it were under God’s protection, and survived unharmed.



    In Second Samuel 22:9 & 13, David sings of God: “There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it...Through the brightness before him were coals of fire kindled.”



    In the famous sacrifice duel between Elijah and the prophets of NOPE, they got no fire, but Elijah’s sacrifice got fire from God,and that fire consumed the sacrifice, the wood, the stones, the dust and even the WATER with which the altar had been doused. See First Kings 18:30-39.



    A caution, in First Kings 19:12, that God is not the fire, or contained in the fire: “And after the earthquate a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.”



    Later, king Ahaziah sent for Elijah, but fire came down heaven to make Elijah’s word true, and it consumed 102 men. See Second Kings 1:10-14.



    In Second Kings 2:11, we see Elijah taken up by a chariot and horses of fire. I suppose he was NOT consumed. Some time later, more chariots and horses were seen by Elisha’s servant when the prophet asked God to open his eyes – see Second Kings 6:17.



    Moving on, we see fire at the dedication of the Temple, closely associated with God’s Glory – see Second Chronicles 7:1-3.



    Nehemiah mentions the pillar of fire from the Exodus, in Nehemiah 9:12 & 19.



    While I don’t care to delve too far into Satan’s bargan with God, we do see that “...The fire of God is fallen from heaven...” and destroying, in Job 1:16. Later, Job’s verbal tormenters mention the wicked being consumed by “a fire not blown,” or not fanned. This could refer to Godfire, but it is not clear in Job 20:26, 22:20 and Job’s own statement in 31:12.



    As we move on into the Psalms, we see God telling us what He will do to the wicked: “...rain snares [burning coals], fire and brimstone [sulfur], and an horrible tempest [burning wind]...” Psalm 11:6.



    Psalms 18:8 give us this: “There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it.” Verses 12 and 13 again mention “coals of fire.”



    See Psalm 21:9 - “Thou shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of

    thine anger: the LORD shall swallow them up in his wrath, and the fire shall devour them.” Note that the fire is NOT called “Hell Fire” but that it is closely associated with God, even though the wording makes the fire separate from Him. We see it again in Psalm 29:7.



    “...a fire shall devour before him...” - in Psalm 50:3.



    Possibly a look ahead at baptisms, in Psalm 66:12 - “...we went through fire and through water...”



    Another comparison of God to fire, here in Psalm 68:2 - “...as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.”



    Psalm 78 presents us with fire from God, but reiterates what we have already seen, verses 14, 21 and 63.



    Asaph asks God in Psalm 79 if His jealousy burns like fire (verse 5).



    In the same way, Ethan asks God in Psalm 89 if His wrath burns like fire (verse 46).



    Psalm 97:3-4 - “A fire goeth before him...His lightnings enlightened the world...”.



    Psalm 104:4 declares that God’s ministers are a flaming fire.



    Exodus fire is again mentioned in Psalm 105:32 and 39.



    Exodus devouring fire is mentioned in Psalm 106:18.



    Psalm 140:8 states that fire praises God, and thus we leave Psalms.



    Moving on into the Proverbs, we might begin to suspect a deeper meaning in that classic verse 25:21-22, all about being kind to an enemy and by doing so, heaping coals of fire on his head.



    Early in the book of Isaiah we see Godfire as a means to cleanse us. Chapter 4, verse 4 reads, “...the Lord shall have washed away the filth...and...purged the blood...by the spirit of of jdugment, and by the spirit of burning.” Verse 5 speaks of “..the shining of a flaming fire by night...”.



    Chapter 5, verses 24 and 25 speak of God’s anger being kindled, and fire devouring stubble and chaff, after God has complained over His people, including this from verse 4: “What could have been done more to my vineyard that I have not done in it?” God had not yet sent His Son and after the Son, the Holy Spirit, depicted in the book of Acts as flame.



    There is a countercurrent in chapter 9, in which God states that “For wickedness burneth as the fire...and the people shall be as the fuel of the fire...” (verses 18-19).



    Isaiah 10:16-17 gives us “...under his glory he shall kindle a burning like the burning of a fire. And the light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame...”.



    God tells us, “Thou shall be visited...with storm and tempest, and the flame of devouring fire.” (29:6)



    Isaiah 30:27 describes God as “burning with his anger,” and “his tongue as a devouring flame.” Also see verse 30. Verse 33 compares God’s breath with a stream of brimstone (sulfur).



    Isaiah 31:9 mentions that God’s “fire is in Zion, and his furnace in Jerusalem.”



    In chapter 33 we see, “...your breath as fire, shall devour you. And the people shall be as the burnings of lime: as thorns cut up shall they be burned in the fire...Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?” (verses 11-14) God’s answer to the two questions is: the righteous. To further explain 33:11-14, we have chapter 43, verse 2, which delivers the promise that “...when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Compare this with First Corinthians 3:15.



    I’m not sure if the fire/flame in 47:14 is natural or not: “Behold, they shall be as stubble; the fire shall burn them; they shall not deliver themselves from the power of the flame: there shall not be a coal to warm at, nor fire to sit before it.”



    Isaiah’s 62:1 give us this statement by God: “...I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth.” Both the righteousness and the salvation, of course, come from God, and He says they SHINE!



    Later, in 64:2, Isaiah compares his God with fire: “As when the melting fire burneth, the fire causeth the waters to boil, to make thy name known to thine adversaries, that the nations may tremble at thy presence!” Not long after, God states through His prophet what His people drive Him to: “These are a smoke in my nose, a fire that burneth all the day.” (65:5)



    Isaiah continues with this: “For, behold, the LORD will come with fire...For by fire and by his sword will the LORD plead with all flesh...” (66:15-16)



    Finally, 66:24, which speaks of the time of the new heavens and the new earth, and the carcases of the transgressors: “...their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched...”. I can’t tell here if the fire is natural or Godfire. Many will say Hellfire, but I tend to disagree, having not found Hellfire elsewhere. But let’s move on.
     
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  3. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    Jeremiah writes in much the same way as Isaiah, as in 4:4 where he says, “...lest my fury come forth like fire, and burn that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings.”



    In 5:14, God threatens that He will “...make my words in thy mouth fire and this people wood, and it shall devour them.”



    A little later, in 6:28-30, we see God as a refiner, and His troubles with the people He tries to refine, but perhaps in vain: “...they are brass and iron; they are all corrupters. The bellows are burned, the lead is consumed of the fire; the founder melteth in vain: for the wicked are not plucked away. Reprobate silver shall men call them, because the LORD hath rejected them.” The prophet states that God’s people are like base metals, and that they could be like silver, but are only “reprobate silver.”



    In 7:20, God says, “...mine anger and my fury shall be poured out upon this place...man...beast...trees...fruit...and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched.” Did He mean this to be literal or figurative? We have a hint in verse 31, where He denounces the literal burning of children: “...I commanded them not, neither came it into my heart.” In this regard, see also 19:5.



    Jeremiah 15:14 gives us, “...for a fire is kindled in mine anger, which shall burn upon you.” In 17:4, God states that is His people who have kindled that fire: “...for ye have kindled a fire in mine anger, which shall burn for ever.”



    A little later, in 20:9, Jeremial speaks of God’s Word being “...in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones...”.



    A chapter later, 21:12, God demands that the House of David do what is right, “...lest my fury go out like fire, and burn that none can quench it...”. Continuing in verse 14, God threatens to start forest fires, so there is some overlap between natural fires and Godfire.



    God asks, in 23:29, “Is not my word like as a fire?” In the same verse, He also compares His Word with a hammer.



    As we enter Lamentations, we see an echo of Jeremiah 20:9, “From above hath he sent fire into my bones...”. (Lamentaions 1:13)



    Chapter 2 gives us, “...he burned against Jacob like a flaming fire...” as we see in verse 3. Verse 4 continues, “...he poured out his fury like fire.”



    The book of Ezekiel begins with the well-known vision of God, “...and a fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it...out of the midst of the fire...their appearance was like burning coals of fire, and like the appearance of lamps...the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning...the appearance of a flash of lightning...the appearance of fire round about within it...I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about...so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD.” All from Chapter 1.



    We see another such vision in 8:2 - “Then I beheld, and lo a likeness as the appearance of fire: from the appearance of his loins even downward, fire; and from his loins even upward, as the appearance of brightness, as the colour of amber.”



    Chapter 10 gives us another vision, and a strange one at that, having

    to do with wheels, cherubim and coals of fire. (verses 1-7)



    Chapter 15 offers God’s opinion of His people, which is that they are like vine wood, and useful for little, but even less so after they have been burned in His fire.



    Ezekiel 21:31 and 22:20 compare God’s wrath to fire. Verses 22:18-22 show God as a Refiner of men - “...the house of Israel is to me become dross: all they are brass, and tin, and iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are even the dross of silver...Because ye are all become dross, behold, therefore I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem. As they gather silver, and brass, and iron, and lead, and tin, into the midst of the furnace, to blow the fire upon it, to melt it; so will I gather you in mine anger and in my fury, and I will leave you there, and melt you. Yea, I will gather you, and blow upon you in the fire of my wrath, and ye shall be melted in the midst thereof. As silver is melted in the midst of the furnace, so shall ye be melted in the midst thereof; and ye shall know that I the LORD have poured out my fury upon you.” We see God here as a refiner, and His people as base metals – as only “the dross of silver.” But the end of the process is that they have become silver, or at least it seems so to this writer. We see here that God’s fury and wrath are only expressions of how He refines, not an attitude of cruelty or eternal hatred toward mankind.



    Ezekiel 22:31 again mentions “...the fire of my wrath...”.



    28:14 & 16 mention both stones of fire and the mountain of God – remember that I have pointed out elsewhere that the prince of Tyre was a man and not Satan.



    God speaks of “...the fire of my jealousy...” in 36:5 – then in 38:19 He tells us that “...in my jealousy and in the fire of my wrath have I spoken...”.



    God lists some of the instruments of His judgment – overflowing rain, great hailstones, fire and brimstone. By these He states that He will be magnified and sanctified. (38:22-23)



    Daniel 3 relates the famous story of the three captives from Judah

    who were thrown into the furnace, but lived for a time in it along with a mysterious fourth Person, which Nebuchadnezzar thought was an angel, but it could have been Someone more…



    Daniel 7:9 describes the Ancient of Day’s throne as being “...like the fiery flame...” and “...his wheels as burning fire.” Verse 11 speaks of “...the beast...slain...and given to the burning flame.”



    Daniel 10:5-6 describes a Person Daniel saw in a vision, “...and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as lamps of fire...”



    Moving on to the book of Joel, and right after stating that He would pour out His Spirit onto everyone, God states that “...I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.” (2:30)



    There is a lot of fire and burning in the book of Amos, but this is worth

    mentioning - “Seek the LORD, and ye shall live; lest he break out lke fire in the house of Joseph, and devour it, and there be none to quench it...”. (5:6) Besides this, there is the rather mysterious verse of 7:4, which speaks of God contending by fire and consuming the “great deep.”



    Micah 1:3-4 tells us, “...the LORD cometh forth out of his place...And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire...”.



    Nahum 1:6 gives us, “...his fury is poured out like fire...”.



    God tells us through Habakkuk the prophet, “...is it not of the LORD of hosts that the people shall labour in the very fire...”. (2:13) At 3:5, he

    says of God that “...burning coals went forth at his feet.”



    God warns by Zephaniah, “...the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy...” and “...all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of my jealousy.” (1:18 and 3:8)



    Zechariah 2:5 states, “...I, saith the LORD, will be unto her a wall of

    fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her.” In 13:9 we see God again as a Refiner: “...I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried...”.



    As the OT closes out, the prophet Malachi says of God, “...he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ sope.” (3:2) The prophet says more in 4:1, “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
     
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  4. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    As the NT begins, John the Baptist says of Jesus, “...he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire...but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” (Matthew 3:11-12)



    We have dealt with this elsewhere, but we have this in 5:22 - “...but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.” This should read, as the CCR says, “gehenna,” so it is not “hellfire” but just the natural fire of the city dump where criminals’ bodies were burned, not given a decent burial.



    Jesus speaks of fire in 7:19, “Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.” We don’t need to think this is hellfire, as it could well be the crucible of God, in which He melts the base metals and extracts at least the silver, as we saw in Ezekiel 22.



    Jesus tells the fate of the tares in 13:40-42 - “...the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world [CCR “age”]...they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.” Refinig again, and Hell is not mentioned. Those cast in are not happy, for to be refined is not pleasant, not at all, but in time will they not come out as silver? See versea 49 and 50 to see that Jesus was speaking of people.



    As with so many things, we have dealt with Matthew 18:8 and 9 in other chapters, but “everlasting fire” is in the Greek, “fire aionion” or we could say, “fire-until-it-goes-out.” Yet, the debate over the proper use of “aionion” just goes on and on. In the next verse, we are given “hell fire,” but the CCR helpfully gives us “gehenna.” I think both fires are the same, the city dump fires which burned most all the time, until they went out due to rain or otherwise – the place is now a park, so the debate between “for an age” and “for ever” may be solved after all.



    Reaching 25:41, we again find “everlasting fire,” but we must wonder if God is simply playing Refiner again.



    In Mark’s Gospel we run again into Jesus’ talk about “if thy hand offend thee,” but the CCR again clues us in: it’s gehenna, gehenna, gehenna. (Mark 9:43-48) Then, Jesus adds, “...every one shall be salted with fire.” (verse 49) Remember what John the Baptist said - that Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire. (Matthew 3:11)



    Luke also mentions the baptism “...with the Holy Ghost and with fire...” in 2:16, and adds in verse 17, “...the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.” Are these the same Fire, or are they not?



    Keeping the above in mind, we can look at Luke 9:54-56 in a new light. Jesus’ disciples must have been steeped in the idea God’s Fire as an agent of retribution, but Jesus rebuked that notion, stating that He came to save, not to destroy. Yet He also spoke of salting with fire and baptizing with fire, so it should start to become clear that God’s Fire is His agent to save men. As He said in 12:49, “I am come to send fire on the earth...”.



    In the Gospel of John, is another verse interpretable as refining: “If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.” (John 15:6)



    In Acts of the Apostles, we see again a close associatin between Fire and the Holly Spirit – see Acts 2:3. Truly, it was a baptism of fire.



    In Acts 2:19, Peter quotes Joel the prophet about the last days, in which there would be “...blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke.”



    In view of the cloven tongues of fire seen at Pentecost (Acts 2:3), we can see heaping coals of fire on peoples’ heads (Romans 12:20) in a whole new light, as a sort of baptism with fire.



    Now for First Corinthians 3:12-15, with its hints of refining: “Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.” As ever, notice God accomplishing His works by way of Fire.



    Second Thessalonians 1:8-9 gives us this: “In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power...” This must be a reference to the Lake of Fire, which we have discussed elsewhere. It results in the Second Death, which I suppose could be equated with “everlasting destruction” except that the Greek word is, again, “aionion,” so “temporary” or “age-long” must be considered as well as “for ever” and “everlasting.”



    Paul’s letter to the Hebrews quotes the Psalms in 1:7 - “And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire.” The invisible world of Spirits must be a place of fire.



    Speaking of the Mountain of God, Hebrews 12:18 tells us, “For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest...” Here is another link between God and Fire. Those who claim to have found the real Mount Sinai in Arabia, tell us that the peak is blakened to this day. The chapter concludes with “For our God is a consuming fire.”



    Fire is mentioned in First Peter 1:7 - “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with

    fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing

    of Jesus Christ...”.



    In Second Peter 3:7, we see once again the theme of baptisms of water and fire: “Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.” Do you see that it is by Fire that this will come to pass: “But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD.” (Numbers 14:21) Peter adds in verse 12: “Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?” There is no need to fear this, for looking at the Bible’s message, it looks certain that we, like Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, will be made able to endure God’s Fire.



    Jude , verse 7. mentions Sodom and Gomorrha, “suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.” The CCR offers us “punishment” rather than “vengeance,” and the Greek interlinear gives us “[the] penalty” - this is toned way down from “vengeance,” and I have seen this bias toward upping the emotional ante many times in the KJV. After all, a penalty/punishment meshes better with other Scriptures, such as the one in which God promises to restore the fortunes of those very peoples – see Ezekiel 16:53. That verse and eternal vengence can not both be true, and Ezekiel is true. As for “eternal fire,” the fire is obvious, but the “eternal” part is as ever, our familiar “aioniou,” which is “aionion” used as an adjective.



    Jude mentions fire once more, in verse 23 - “And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.” This hints at removing people from the refining Fires of God and moving them along to the siver or gold condition, commonly referred to as salvation. In this connection, see Amos 4:11.
     
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  5. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    As we enter the Revelation, John has a vision of the risen Christ in 1:14 and 15 - “...his eyes were as a flame of fire. And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace...” The next chapter, in verse 18 confirms - “...the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass...”. The same imagery can be seen in 2:18 and in 19:12.



    In 3:18, Jesus states, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried [refined] in the fire...”.



    Chapter 4, verse 5 shows us the throne of God: “And from the throne proceeded lightnings, thunderings, and voices. Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.”



    Chapter 8, verses 5, 7 and 8 involve Fire as part of the events after the seventh seal is opened: “And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake...The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up. And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of the sea became blood...”.



    It would seem that not only God is associated with Fire, but so are His angels, as we see in 10:1 - “And I saw another mighty angel…and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire...”



    Speaking of the two witnesses, 11:5 tells us, “And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.”



    There is yet another look at God as a Refiner in 14:10-11 - “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.” First, notice the usual water/wine to fire progression. Second, God’s refining is not pleasnat while it is going on, or as the aurhor of Hebrews says, “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. (Hebrews 12:11) Third, the phrase “for ever and ever” is, in the Greek, “aionas aionon,” or in the English side of the interlinear, it is “ages of ages.” I think they got it right that time…



    In 10:18 we see another angel having to do with fire...also in 16:8.



    Now if we go back to 4:5 about the throne of God, we can go on to the next verse which informs us that a sea of glass lay before the throne, and 5:2 tells us further that the glass of the sea was mingles with fire.



    We read of the whore being burned with fire, in 17:16 and 18:8, but I am not certain it is natural fire or divine fire.



    John had a vision of the fate of God’s enemies - at 19:20, the beast and the false prophet were tossed into “...a lake of fire burning with brimstone.” Refining even for these? It seems so. Moving on to 20:9-10, “And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.” These are devoured here like so many others in the OT, and we are not told of their future, but can only infer it from God’s refining work. As for the time factor, it is again, ages of the ages. The last mention of refining is in 20:14-15, and in 21:8
     
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  6. Maria Billingsley

    Maria Billingsley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Thanks! I have always wondered why some Christian circles call "fire" upon themselves or create "fire" tunnels etc., as being a good thing. I believe they do not read John the Baptist's proclamation in full. Baptism is an immersion. It was in water form through John the Baptist and Holy Spirit form through Jesus Christ of Nazareth. John also makes the point that the power of judgment through "fire" was under the control of Christ and that this type of immersion is possible for those who reject Him.
    Blessings
     
  7. Michael Collum

    Michael Collum Everything began with a voice, use yours Supporter

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    Also good to consider:

    For it is time for judgment to begin with God's household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? (1 Peter 4:17)

    and

    Mark 9:49-50
    49Everyone will be salted with fire.

    50“Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with each other.
     
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  8. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Dear Laz: my goodness brother, this is an incredible study!

    [​IMG]

    The Consuming Fire

    Nothing is inexorable but love. Love which will yield to prayer is imperfect and poor. Nor is it then the love that yields, but its alloy. For if at the voice of entreaty love conquers displeasure, it is love asserting itself, not love yielding its claims. It is not love that grants a boon unwillingly; still less is it love that answers a prayer to the wrong and hurt of him who prays. Love is one, and love is changeless.

    For love loves unto purity. Love has ever in view the absolute loveliness of that which it beholds. Where loveliness is incomplete, and love cannot love its fill of loving, it spends itself to make more lovely, that it may love more; it strives for perfection, even that itself may be perfected–not in itself, but in the object. As it was…

    Continued below

    Unspoken Sermons by George MacDonald: The Consuming Fire
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2020
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  9. Shrewd Manager

    Shrewd Manager Through him, in all things, more than conquerors. Supporter

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    Thank you brother for this labour in preparing a comprehensive catalogue and helpful summary of Godfire scriptures.

    So we have in 'short', fire as the description of God's:
    • being (ineffable power and glory) and manifested presence (His eyes, ears, tongue, breath, words)
    • attributes (love, anger and covenant jealousy)
    • effect on ppl (consuming, refining, purifying, cleansing, baptising),
    • throne and issue thereof (stream from the throne into the lake),
    • instruments (baptism, flaming sword, brazier and coals, lamp, fire from heaven),
    • ministers (seraphim, cherubim, angels, chariots).
    For everyone will be salted with fire, and SALT IS GOOD. The Lake of Fire is God's ultimate remedy to purify reprobate silver.
     
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  10. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    The "and be at peace with each other" part is often overlooked. Salt needs not be contentious.
     
  11. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    Well done! You've listed some things I did not pick up on.
     
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  12. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    Sodium and chlorine are VERY contentious, but after they combine, it's salty peace forever.
     
  13. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    Yes. Preservation should follow restoration.
     
  14. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    I didn't see any mention of this scripture in the readings above. Though I may have overlooked it.

    This speaks to the nature of fire in the heavenly realms. A live coal is taken from the altar and used to touch Isaiah's mouth. No indication of pain or hurt. But his guilt is taken away and his sin atoned for.

    Isaiah 6:5-7
    “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.”
    6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”
     
  15. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    Thanks! I'll check my manuscript...

    Yes, I failed to look up "coal" in my Concordance. BTW, did you know that the Book of Jasher mentions the young Moses putting a live coal to his mouth, and for that reason, he was "slow of speech?"
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2020
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  16. Charlie24

    Charlie24 Newbie

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    Fellows I am impressed with the love you find in our Father. I truly believe you all have good intentions.

    Here's my problem with your analysis.

    If sin is so serious that God could not find any other way to forgive man but by sending His only Son to die a cruel humiliating death on the cross. Then we had better be careful to see His judgement for those who have rejected His Son.

    Hell is a real eternal place of punishment, made for Satan and his fallen angels. They will be there for eternity with no hope. They know this better than we, but yet they have loved the pleasures of sin more than the Creator who made them.

    Those of us who have loved the pleasures of sin more than the One who Created us and have rejected the Son who made a way of escape from this place, will have their part with Satan and his angels forever in the eternal lake of fire.
     
  17. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    No. I was not aware of that bit about Moses.
    Seems rather bizarre. I have never associated Moses slowness of speech to an injury.

    Exodus 4:10-12
    Moses said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.”
    11 The Lord said to him, “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12 Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”
     
  18. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    Or...you could address the subject of this thread.
     
  19. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    Here's the problem I have with your analysis. (see bold above)

    You assume that everyone who ends up in the need of restorative fire has REJECTED Christ. This is simply not the case.

    I truly believe you have good intentions as well. Just misinformed.

    Can you address any of the specific points about Godfire?
     
  20. Lazarus Short

    Lazarus Short Well-Known Member

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    As Steve says - I have come to believe that Jesus the Christ baptizes with fire, and that we are ALL must be salted with fire. That is exactly why we cannot stand in the Presence in our carnal flesh: we would go <poof>. For the same reason, we cannot enter the Kingdom in our flesh - we must put on new flesh, just as Jesus boasts that He has made all things new.
     
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