Summary: This sermon will challenge believers and seekers to make a very important decision at flashpoint moments in their lives! Fizzle or Burn? Which will you choose?
Flash Point: Ignite or Fizzle
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:
Alvin Toffler once said, Change is not merely necessary to life, it is Life.
Now in firefighting lingo, there is a phrase that is used to express a very critical moment in the beginning stages of a fire.
It is when the temperature gets to a certain level to which everything combustible in a room spontaneously bursts into flames, spreading the fire immediately and instantaneously.
This phrase is simply called “Flash Point”. It is the point in which everything that can burn will burn.
***Explain the Striking of a match: “And Introduce Title”***
Let me just say that Burning is a Good thing when it comes to the kingdom of God. And our text says: he Who? Jesus shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
Separating Holy Ghost and fire in the spiritual life of a person, would be like trying to separate the soul and spirit of a person, and only God can do that.
My point being, if you have every experienced the Holy Ghost, then you have also experienced the fire.
Let’s take, for example, a house that catches on fire. At first, the fire is grasping for everything that it can burn. The substance in the house becomes the fuel for the fire.
But their comes a point to where the fire has affected the temperature of the house so much so, that it has brought it to a flash point and something powerful is fixing to happen.
Someone once asked Jean Cocteau, the French writer, artist, and film director, what he would take if his house were on fire and he could remove only one thing. His reply was absolutely astounding.
He said, “I would take the Fire.” I would take the fire.
Now, in one sense, Cocteau’s answer seems to be an obvious, almost practical solution.
If you take the fire from a burning building, then the building will no longer burn. But I think he meant it in another way.
As a writer and an artist, he knew that fire—passion—is an indispensable ingredient in the creative process. And if he could have one thing, he would choose fire every time.
Passion—that fire in the belly—is the catalyst of every believer that wants to be a receiver. And the level of passion for God can be typed with the temperature of a fire.
It’s the fire of passion that changes a life, and one passionate life can absolutely change the world!
It yesterday that I was witnessing to this waitress where we were eating and I asked her about her church. She said it was non-denominational. I said, is that kinda like Charismatic?
She said, well, not really, it’s kinda uh uh, and I said, “Laid back”? And she swiftly replied yes.
At that moment this message was born. I began to think, when and where did this idea of being saved without the fire of the Holy Ghost begin?
Who was the instigator? Who was the fighter of this fire? Surely not just one person was powerful enough to put out the fire in churches all over this world.
It was then that the Lord showed me, The Fire, the passion Starts in the Home. Your Passion for God is what gets you to church. It is at that point that things can get dangerous.
Any firefighter will tell you that fire is predictably unpredictable. Under the right circumstances even a small fire can pose a great danger. I like it!
If a blaze reaches the flash point, sometimes called flashover temperature, every bit of combustible material in the room—wood, paper, carpet, drapes, and furniture—will explode into flames.
And they say that there comes a point that the fire doesn’t even half to touch anything to spread! Now are you with me?
The fire gets so hot that it actually spreads by heating up everything around it. A confined blaze will heat the atmosphere in the room until everything in the enclosed space spontaneously ignites.
At this point, if it can burn, at flashpoint it will.
If you follow your passion for God, it will get you to a spiritual flash point, and at that point, you will either Fizzle or Ignite.
Now, if you want a watered down gospel, you will fizzle. But if you want the same fire that John the Baptist was preaching about, then you must be willing to catch on fire and burn.
When did this fire begin? When did this fire start? When did this thing called the church ignite? Was it explosive back then. Or was it a laid back atmosphere, as the young lady’s church from yesterday?