Thought of the Day May 25, 2022 Fire: symbol of the Holy Spirit

By 11:17 AM


Have you been baptized with the Holy Spirit and fire? This is what John the Baptist preached:  "I am baptizing you with water, for repentance, but the one who is coming after me is mightier than I. I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the holy Spirit and fire." (Mt 3:11) One of the symbols of the Holy Spirit is fire. When the Spirit descended upon those in the Upper Room on Pentecost, "There appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the holy Spirit." (Acts 2:3-4)

What is the meaning of this symbol? The fire is a sign of the presence of God. Recall the experience of Moses' encounter with I AM in the burning bush. Or the column of fire which accompanied the Israelites during their exodus journey. The fire is symbol of the passion a person has for after hearing the Word of God explained. Recall the experience of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus on Easter. "“Were not our hearts burning [within us] while he spoke to us on the way and opened the scriptures to us?" (Lk 24:32) Fire is a symbol of purification. The Spirit comes to purify us from the obstacles that prevent us from growing in holiness and in witnessing about Jesus to others. Again, I ask: have you been baptized with the Holy Spirit and fire?

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