John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
The night of 24th December 2002, Christmas Eve, at Mt Elizabeth Hospital, the whole family gathered around my mother, who was breathing her last. We spent the final moments praying, speaking to her and committing her into the loving hands of our Lord God.
On this Christmas Eve some 2000 years back, something was brewing in the cosmos. The Infinite WORD was about to become … flesh. The word flesh (σάρξ; sarx) describes the condition of human existence and the nature of the relation between the living being and the world. It denotes how being is dependent on the created order, for example, how human life is dependent on air and the specific composition of gases. Life on earth is subject to certain conditions and has its limitations.
Being on fire for God will lead one to places less travelled, to where only God our Shepherd has trodden and scouted out before us. To be on fire for God is to rely on God’s pillar of fire, to be comfortable with the tiny light from the lamp unto our feet. If you are, like me, on a road less travelled, I hope this meditation will be of comfort to you.
If God is with us, why? Gideon was one of many biblical figures to ask this question – and with good reason! Israel in Judges 6 was in a state of terror and humiliation – suffering Midianite invasions, hunger and despair. Then the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, and called him a mighty warrior.
The Bible is rich in biographical detail of the exploits of prophets and kings, men and women who could make heavens open in rain and slay giants with a sling and a stone. And we do associate with their journeys of faith, seeing parallels in our own struggles and victories.
John the Baptiser said of Jesus: “He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” (Matthew 3:11). The fulfilment of this prophecy is found in the book of Acts. What appeared as tongues of fire on the day of Pentecost ignited a movement, and by the end of the book it had already reached Rome, the heart of the empire of those days. It is a pattern that has been repeated many times in Church history.