More than Ashes: Becoming the Burnt Offerings of God.
We are more than the ashes say. They will fade away when the Spirit comes in our midst. We are not the same when the fresh wind of the Holy Spirit blows.
There is something about the Burnt Offering in Leviticus 6 that is very encouraging to people who are of faith and believing for revival. It is we are more than ashes and that the fire on the altar will never go out!
The priest shall then put on his linen clothes, with linen undergarments next to his body, and shall remove the ashes of the burnt offering that the fire has consumed on the altar and place them beside the altar. (Leviticus 6:10)
The process under the Old Testament system would be for a priest that would put on special clothes, go to the altar, remove the ashes and put fresh wood in the fire so it would never stop burning.
They had to remove the remains of yesterday’s fire in order to keep today’s fire burning. What God did for the people anytime before the day in question was not enough. They needed the fire of God every day. After all, God’s mercies are new every morning.
Everything God does it for us must be consumed within its’ life cycle. Living is the touches from yesteryear was never enough for the people of God.
The opportunity of a lifetime must be seized in the lifetime of the opportunity. (Leonard Ravenhill)
Why yesterday’s fire is no good?
God has designed things so every day requires an experience with the Holy Spirit. It is not like some spiritual resume that we have because we was touch on this and that day in yesteryear.
I think of a pastor in a small Assembly of God that use to tell me all the time God touched him in a Kathlyn Kuthlman meetings in 1974. He talked about it with eyes lit opened. However, the thought that always ran through my mind was the fire from that day was long burnt out.
Many like him want to live from the ashes of some fire that has long burnt out. Our churches are full of people that are still in the glory days of the tent revivals.
If we do not remove the ashes of the fire from before, we can actually slow down or even quench the fire of today. The miracles from the 1990’s aren’t doing anything for us but serving as memories.
The burnt offering of our lives can’t be full of them and the ashes of prior moves of the Spirit if we want to see the fire of Heaven to full its’ fullness in our lives and ministries today.
Like many, I am thankful and grateful for the power of the Holy Spirit in the moves of God that I was part of but they are enough today.
Wanting revival vs needing revival
In Leviticus 6, we read the the priest was told to arrange the day’s fresh wood to help burn the fat of the fellowship offering,
Every morning the priest is to add firewood and arrange the burnt offering on the fire and burn the fat of the fellowship offerings on it. (Leviticus 6:12)
There was many offering in the Old Testament and most of them was required. The only one that wasn’t is called either a peace offering or fellowship offering.
This was something that people offered to God out of desire, not requirement. They wanted to give back to the Lord. It was above and beyond the offerings that were demanded of them.
The offering of free will was burned by the day’s fire at the altar. (Burnt Offering) This is where we move past requirement of sanctification but hunger for more of the presence that we have. God’s promise was that “more than we think or imagine.” (Ephesians 3:20)
There was also a commanded blessing that flowed from the fellowship offering that did not happen from the required ones. It was also after the presentation and consumption of the peace offering that prosperity came to those offering it.
The Holy Spirit is calling us to move from needing revival and His fire to actually desiring and wanting fresh fire on the altar every day.
May the fire on the altar never go out
In just five verses, we are told to not let the fire on the altar go out three times. If almost every verse mentioned it, it must be important. It is, as if, it was possible to get to a point there was not a fire on the altar.
It has been the mission of the saints since Pentecost to keep the fire burning just like they did in the Torah. It has been fanned daily from Acts 2 until today. Every morning, people have had to remove the ashes of the day before and get fresh fire. This the story of the “great cloud of witnesses.”
We could talk about the great missionary movement that came out of Herrnhut, Germany in the 1700’s that was marked by a mission to never let the fire on the altar go out. Count Zinzendorf spoke of this often at the time.
The great Pentecostal revival that started in Topeka and later in Los Angeles known as Azusa Street Revival is another example of keeping the fire burning. They knew that every day could be the end of the outpouring. They had to steward the fire!
The same mission that was given to Count Zinzendorf and William Seymour is before us: keep the fire of the Holy Spirit burning in our churches for one more day. Every day is a call to have it “just one more day.”
In the Old Testament, they had burnt offerings; In the New Testament we become the Burnt Offering.