Faithlife Sermons

Tongues of Fire

I. Introduction
A. Tomorrow is a day set aside for remembering those who have died defending freedom.
The freedoms that so many people of the United States of America take for granted.
Freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion, a free press, the freedom to bear arms — just to name a few.
B. I served 3 years in the Army and I have had many family members who have served including both my father and my father-in-law who were both career military, 2 of my 3 younger sisters served and I have a nephew who is currently serving in the Navy.
From that perspective, I am tremendously grateful for all those who as President Abraham Lincoln said in the Gettysburg address “gave the last full measure of devotion.”
He admonished this nation by saying at the end of his speech:
“It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
I am an American, BUT first and foremost I am a citizen of the Kingdom of God, I and WE are commissioned not so much by any U.S. president, but by God Himself to be change-agents in this place where we live.
Committed to the people around us experiencing “a new birth of freedom.”
A new birth of Spiritual freedom
The freedom Jesus declared in: John 8:31–32, 36 (NASB95) [Jesus said…] “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” 36 “So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.
The only way — THE ONLY WAY — that we can help this nation gain that “new birth of freedom” is under the anointing of the Holy Spirit.
An enduement of, an anointing of, a clothing with power and fire such as the 120 experienced on that first Pentecost 2000 years ago:
On this Sunday following Pentecost Sunday, we continue to emphasize what happened that day 2000 years ago when a fire broke out among 120 Christ-followers who were seeking for that which Jesus had told them to wait — power from on high.
Acts 2:1–4 NASB95
1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.
D. So many living around us in our neighborhoods,
So many in our families, who go to the schools we attend, who work in the same places we do are living in bondage.
Bondage to the devil
Bondage to his agenda to steal, kill and destroy
May God himself anoint OUR tongues with fire of the Holy Spirit to proclaim a “new birth of freedom.”
E. Even more important than the sacrifice of all those who have given this nation freedom for the past 245 years are the many martyrs who have died proclaiming, defending the freedom of Jesus over the past 2 millennia.
The freedom from sin that comes through Jesus
The freedom from the hell we deserve because Jesus suffered and died in our place.
C. These martyrs died speaking with tongues set on fire by the Holy Spirit.
Speaking prophetic words that illuminated the darkest corners of human depravity
Speaking fiery words that burned up arguments set against the truth of God.
Speaking unassailable words, irrefutable words of light, life, and liberty
D. Like Stephen of old:
He spoke in the wisdom and anointing of the Holy Spirit
Irresistible speech Acts 6:10
Acts 6:10 CEV
10 But they were no match for Stephen, who spoke with the great wisdom that the Spirit gave him.
With his tongue set on fire with the Holy Spirit Stephen spoke words that cut to the quick (Acts 7:54)
Acts 7:54 NASB95
Now when they heard this, they were cut to the quick, and they began gnashing their teeth at him.
Speech that flowed out of a fresh revelation of Jesus (Acts 7:55-56)
Like the disciples who stood in front of the religious council in ...
Acts 4:13 NASB95
Now as they observed the confidence of Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed, and began to recognize them as having been with Jesus.
Being with Jesus, walking in the power and fire of the Holy Spirit — that’s what set the disciples apart from all other pretenders.
Stephen too, one of the first deacons, spoke with a tongue set on fire by the Holy Spirit because he too had a revelation of Jesus
Acts 7:55–56 NASB95
But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”
Stephen paid for his fiery speech with his life.
He gave his life for freedom’s cause.
Church, may we speak with tongues set on fire by the Holy Spirit.
the alternative is to speak with tongues set on fire by hell:
James 3:5–6 NASB95
So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and yet it boasts of great things. See how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell.
God has given us free-will.
We get to choose our speech.
Proverbs 18:20-21 (Passion Translation) Sharing words of wisdom is satisfying to your inner being. It encourages you to know that you’ve changed someone else’s life. 21 Your words are so powerful that they will kill or give life, and the talkative person will reap the consequences.
We get to choose whether we will speak words that kill or give life
Moses stood before Israel and said:
Deuteronomy 30:19 NASB95
“I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants,
He was talking about obedience to God commands, but included in those commands are guidelines for speaking words that bring blessing and life — may we choose blessing and life!
The words we speak will ultimately come from our hearts:
Jesus said in:
Luke 6:45 NASB95
“The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.
Jesus, speaking to the Pharisees said in:
Matthew 12:34–37 NASB95
“You brood of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak what is good? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. “The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil. “But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. “For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
D. There are so many people outside and even inside the church who have been touched by horrible, devastating things.
E. They’ve been touched by:
1. Violence,
2. Verbal, physical and sexual abuse
3. Divorce
4. Discrimination
5. Abortion
6. Depression
7. And so many other devastating, destructive forces.
F. Folks, we live in a hurting world, are we willing to speak words that lead to freedom and life?
Words set on fire with the anointing of the Holy Spirit?
And may we BE SURE we are speaking the words of the Spirit?
ESPECIALLY if we purport to be speaking for God by making such a statement as, “God told me to tell you...”
We are a Pentecostal church, we believe in the gifts of the Spirit which include many gifts that use language.
May we be careful to ONLY speak that which comes from the Holy Spirit when we manifest such gifts?
We not only encourage the Gifts to operate, but we also judge the gifts:
1 Corinthians 14:27–29 NASB95
27 If anyone speaks in a tongue, it should be by two or at the most three, and each in turn, and one must interpret; 28 but if there is no interpreter, he must keep silent in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God. 29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment.
Let those who are likewise gifted in the Holy Spirit judge what is said by the standard of the Word of God.
No prophetic utterance, no Word of knowledge or Word of Wisdom will contradict the Word of God — it will line up with it and validate it.
G. So, will we touch our world for Jesus?
1.Will we speak His words?
2. Will we be His hands?
This world needs the gentle, loving, compassionate touch and words of people who belong to the King of Love — Jesus.
Words of love and compassion such as the King of Love gave to the prostitute, the leper, the tax collector, the sinner, the cripple, the sick
H. Not a word or touch that condones or endorses their sin, but a word that says things like that old hymn:
1. I came to Jesus weary, worn and sad,
2. He took my sins away, He took my sins away.
3. And now His love has made my heart so glad,
4. He took my sins away.
That’s OUR testimony to a world that needs the message of hope, the message of life.
I. The last verse gives the message that our lost world needs to hear:
1. If you will come to Jesus Christ today,
2. He’ll take your sins away, He’ll take your sins away.
3. And keep you happy in His love each day,
4. He’ll take your sins away.
But before we speak, let’s surrender our tongues to Jesus.
Let’s ask that the fire of the Holy Spirit burns away the dross.
Burns away anything NOT of God.
As we sang Wednesday night:
Holy Spirit fall like fire Burn away everything not of You
IX. Close
What about us this morning?
Will WE allow the Holy Spirit to anoint our tongues?
An anointing that cannot be withstood?
The anointing of fire that will bring a “new birth of freedom” for this country?
Will we, like Stephen of old, like the Apostles of old, walk in a FRESH vision of Jesus?
Will people take note of us that WE have been with Jesus?
NOT that we have any certain degree from a university or NO degree from a university — just that we have been with Jesus.
After we have experienced a vision of Jesus, will we respond to His call?
Will we GO into all the world?
Will we touch our world for Jesus?
Will we teach those we win to Jesus, obedience to His commands?
Will we speak with words set on fire by hell or set on fire by the Holy Spirit?
Dick Brogden said in his devotional Missionary God, Missionary Bible:
There is a vicious war for the glory of God being waged, and it is a war of words. Christians and missionaries have a stewardship duty to sharpen their weapons, to practice with them, and to use them wisely. As our words are so precious, so finite in number, let’s commit them all to the King and His gospel. Let our words be few and focused, pure and piercing, prophetic and loving, anointed and fearless.
X. Altar
A. Salvation call.
Related Media
Related Sermons