Tuesday, August 16, 2016

The Consuming Fire

Repeat and or meditate on this verse until your thoughts are centered on God.
I will my grateful offerings bring,
and sacrifice with joy;
then in his praise all of my life
delightfully employ.
 —Psalm 54:6
Suggested tune: Horsley (CM)

Since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us give thanks, by which we offer to God an acceptable worship with reverence and awe, for indeed our God is a consuming fire.
—Hebrews 12:28-29
We have received a kingdom that cannot be moved—whose nature is immovable: let us have grace to serve the Consuming Fire, our God, with divine fear; not with the fear that cringes and craves, but with the bowing down of all thoughts, all delights, all loves before him who is the life of them all, and will have them all pure. The kingdom he has given us cannot be moved, because it has nothing weak in it: it is of the eternal world, the world of being, of truth. We, therefore, must worship him with a fear pure as the kingdom is unshakeable. He will shake heaven and earth, that only the unshakeable may remain: he is a consuming fire, that only that which cannot be consumed may stand forth eternal. It is the nature of God, so terribly pure that it destroys all that is not pure as fire, which demands like purity in our worship. He will have purity. It is not that the fire will burn us if we do not worship thus; but that the fire will burn us until we worship thus; yea, will go on burning within us after all that is foreign to it has yielded to its force, no longer with pain and consuming, but as the highest consciousness of life, the presence of God.
—George MacDonald, Unspoken Sermons 1867
Grant me understanding, O Lord, and teach me your ordinances. The sins of my youth cast far from me, and may my transgressions not be remembered against me. Purify me, O Lord, from the evil scourge, and let it not turn against me...
—from the Qumran community (Dead Sea Scrolls)
Allow the above to help guide your own confession, praise, thanksgiving, and/or petition.

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil; for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.
 —Matthew 6:9-13

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