Spiritual Experiences [Part 1]
Are you ready for some good news?
God is a consuming fire. And, yes, that is really good news!
Today’s Text: Now Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law, Jethro, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning, yet it was not consumed. Then, Moses said, “I will turn aside to see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.” When the Lord saw that he had turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Do not come near! Take your sandals off your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” (
This is Moses meeting God on God's own terms. If you are ever going to know somebody, you won’t know him/her until you experience him/her. If all you have is an image of someone in your mind or mental assent to someone’s existence, you don’t really know that person. To know someone is experience that person.
Christianity isn’t about mental assent to doctrines. It is not about acknowledgment of God’s reality. Christianity is an experience of God. He loves you. He saves you. He teaches you. He communes with you. He rejoices over you. He corrects you. He thrills you.
What happens to Moses is, simply put, a spiritual experience. When the exiled murderer hears God speak from the midst of a burning bush, Moses has to decide: Either this is a delusion and I’m losing my mind or I’m experiencing God. If I’m experiencing God, this moment transforms every presupposition and plan of my life.
It was no small thing that God appeared in fire. After all, the scripture has always made it plain: “Know therefore today that he who goes over before you as a consuming fire is the Lord your God” (Dt. 9).
Fire isn’t like other elements. If you touch water, you affect the water. If you touch clay, you mold the clay. But if you touch fire, the fire changes you! God doesn’t want you to blindly believe doctrinal proclamations. He wants you to experience His grace up close and personal. When you experience the fire of God’s love it changes you forever. And that’s the Gospel!
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