©2011 Stan Hallett
I was getting ready to preach an evangelistic message and was testing the look of a Powerpoint presentation on the the platform screen. My title had something to do with the Holy Ghost. The background for the title page was fire. A pastor friend who saw it said. “What’s with the fire?” Then he gave me a quick little Bible study. It took about sixty seconds for me to see it.
If you read the verse before and after Matthew 3:11, I think you will see that the Church is baptized with the Holy Ghost, but never with fire. Please do a word study of the word fire in the New Testament. Fire always refers to the punishment and not to the Church.
John the Baptist said that “He will baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire” because he was talking to those that would be saved, as well as those that would not be saved. Those that are lost will be baptized (submersed) in the lake of fire. Fire has nothing to do with the Church.
We cannot take it out of context and just quote verse number eleven. If we read also verse ten and verse twelve, now we can see indeed that we do not want to be baptized in fire. . .
10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
11 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 Ghost, and with fire:
12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
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