#635 (1/8/22) PASS ON THE FIRE
(During the summer, I will not be producing our usual daily devotionals. Each week, I will only produce one group study based on the Sunday message. Daily devotions will resume - God willing - on Monday 5th September)
1. THE NEXT GENERATION NEED TO CATCH THE FIRE
You and I are Christians because someone passed on the message of the gospel and taught us what's in the Bible. All around many churches are in decline; why is this? Surely it's because they do not have the fire of God; their passion for God is not being felt by those around them. Like those runners in the Commonwealth Games that has just started, we need to pass the baton on to the next generation; the next generation need to catch the fire from us.
On Sunday, we looked at Psalm 145:1-5:
“I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no-one can fathom. One generation commends your works to another; they tell of your mighty acts. They speak of the glorious splendour of your majesty – and I will meditate on your wonderful works.” (Psalms 145:1-5)
We read of David’s passion for God. He is amazed and full of admiration for who He is. He is convinced that He will not only praise Him ‘every day’, he is also confident that he will worship Him ‘for ever and ever’. David is like a fire for God; he is burning with love for Him. He is not ‘lukewarm’, he is ‘hot’ in His heart for God.
David, however, is dead. He is worshipping God in glory. However, the church continues because the message and passion have been passed on from generation to generation.
2. HOW DO WE PASS ON THE FIRE?
How do we pass on salvation and passion to the next generation? How can we each play our part in this vital work?
i. COME TO KNOW GOD IN SALVATION (145:1)
David writes: ‘I will exalt you, my God the King…One generation commends your works to another; they tell of your mighty acts.’ Firstly, if we are to be the kind of people and the kind of church that passes on the baton of love for God, we must become Christians ourselves. Can we say that God is ‘my God and king’ through repentance and faith? Are we captivated by the ‘work’ and ‘mighty act’ of the cross by which God died in order to justify and save us? The Fire of worship begins with becoming a Christian and the heart transformation that flows from this.
ii. CATCH THE FIRE THROUGH PRAISE (v.2-3)
Secondly, we pass on passion for God through our expressions of worship. How we live, speak and sing should show forth the worth of God. May we be like Daniel who was not afraid or ashamed to be seen as a worshipper. Bill Wilson wrote, ‘If people don’t know what your passion is, you don’t have one.’
When do we worship each day? When do we pour out our oil of thanksgiving? Are we actively involved in magnifying God with the church? Do you see that our being able to say ‘great is the Lord and most worthy of praise’ is the motivation of our telling the next generation - worship is a fire that spreads!
iii. PASS ON THE FIRE - TELL THE NEXT GENERATION (145:4)
Our psalm reads: ‘Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no-one can fathom. One generation commends your works to another.’ How do we get practical about helping non-believers and young people to know and worship God? Here are four ways:
i. Teaching: we need to teach according to capacity and status of the person we are seeking to help; let’s teach children, young adults, adults who have no faith… with wisdom. May our churches seek to expound scripture in wisdom.
ii. Singing: In our churches, let’s ensure that we sing songs of truth and that stir the heart.
iii. Communion: Israel had lots of festivals; these acted as means of passing on the faith. For Christians, Remembering the gospel through Communion is the only ‘feast’ that we are commanded to use in order to remember the most important act of God in history.
iv. Meeting: Meeting with the church in worship and fellowship is vital for passing on knowledge and love. We must not treat church attendance lightly. Let’s do all that we can to show our children that church involvement is of utmost importance.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION OR PERSONAL REFLECTION
Did God speak to you about anything from this blog or Sunday’s message?
Which sections of scripture do you use in your worship - to inspire you in God?
What are your most edifying worship songs?
How do these four tools of teaching, singing, Communion and regular meeting help us to catch fire and pass on the fire of passion for God?
SIV (Serve, Invest, inVite) - How does your life reveal that you are passionate about God?
SIV (Serve, Invest, inVite) - Do you have any non-believing friends that you would like to pray for?