The Wind And The Fire
“And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” —Acts 2:1-4
THERE ARE SEVERAL symbols used in the Bible for the Holy Spirit. Their purpose is to illustrate, illuminate, and to give insight and understanding.
Those symbols are:
Oil—represents the anointing of the Holy Spirit. When kings or priests in Israel were consecrated to their office, oil was poured over their heads.
The dove. In Luke 3:22, we read of the Holy Spirit descending upon Jesus in the form of a dove. The dove represents the gentleness and comfort of the Holy Spirit.
Living water—another symbol representing the life of the Spirit (Jn. 7:37-39).
There is no life outside of the Holy Spirit. The final two symbols are the only two symbols represented in the Acts, Chapter 2, account of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. I believe that this is because the final two symbols—wind and fire—represent the two most important works of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. Let’s take a closer look at these two.
The rushing mighty wind of Acts, Chapter 2, is symbolic of the power of the Holy Spirit. The true church of the Lord Jesus Christ is to be a church of power—power that is greater than the powers of Satan.
Without the power of the Holy Spirit, there is no reason to have church, but with the power, sinners are saved, and believers are healed and filled. We see the power of the Holy Spirit in operation during Pentecost as 3,000 were saved. In Acts, Chapter 3, the lame man is healed. This is what the power of the Holy Spirit can do.
Jesus And The Holy Spirit
There is no doubt of the importance that Jesus placed on the Holy Spirit. In Luke, Chapter 3, we see the visible appearance of the dove descending from heaven and coming upon Christ. In Luke 4:1, the Scripture states that Jesus was “full of the Holy Spirit,” and in Luke 4:18, the text states, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me.” Every miracle performed by the Lord during His earthly ministry was done as a man operating within the power of the Holy Spirit. If the Lord had to have the power of the Holy Spirit, then how much more do we have to have the power of the Holy Spirit?
The Purpose Of The Power
The purpose of the power of the Holy Spirit within our lives is to fulfill the Great Commission as given to us by the Lord in Mark 16:15-18. To do the works of Christ is one of the greatest honors that any believer could ever have. To be able to lay hands on one who is sick in body and see him healed, to lay hands on a poor demon-possessed soul and see him set free, or to proclaim the good news of Christ’s atoning work is what the power of the Holy Spirit is all about. We must have the wind of the Spirit blow again as He did on the day of Pentecost. Wherever the wind is blowing is where you will find the Lord, and that’s where I want to be.
Fire is symbolic of purity. This speaks of the sanctification process of the believer. It is our re-creation into “the image of the heavenly” (I Cor. 15:49) by the flame of purification. As this is the final symbol used in the text, this makes me believe that this specific work of the Holy Spirit is by far His most important task.
Though we are saved, still, there is much in each of us that is of the flesh and not of the Spirit. Actually the doctrine of sanctification is just as important to the believer as the doctrine of salvation to the sinner. The process of sanctification is a lifetime process, and it is a process that can be violent to the flesh but pleasing to the Spirit.
The Words Of John The Baptist
In Matthew 3:11-12, John addressed this very process. He said: “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but He that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire: Whose fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor, and gather His wheat into the garner; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
At the time of the harvest, the grain would be taken to the threshing floor, a large round rock that sloped downward. The grain would be laid on the floor and trampled under the feet of oxen or the wheel of a wagon. The purpose of this was to separate the grain from the chaff or husk. The grain would be tossed into the air while people who stood around the edge of the threshing floor would wave large palm leaves that would create a current of wind that would blow the chaff to the edge, with the grain falling to the floor. The wheat would then be stored in the garner with the chaff then being burned by fire.
The chaff attached to the grain is a type of the flesh that all of us battle. The fire of the Holy Spirit is the only way that separation can come. Our works and our good intentions cannot and will not benefit our sanctification. It is strictly the work of the Holy Spirit that we must desire and yield to daily.
The wheat is the finished work of the Holy Spirit and the only thing accepted by the Lord. If we allow the Holy Spirit to burn off the chaff, then as grain or the finished product, the Holy Spirit can then “present you (us) faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy” (Jude, Vs. 24).
I pray that your desire as a believer is to walk in holiness, a vessel of honor, purified and sanctified by the fire of the Holy Spirit.
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