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Strange Fire on The Altar
Stats: 3,169 words / Reading Time: 15.85 mins

Published: Saturday 21st March 2020

Strange Fire on The Altar is read 418 times on CentreNDL.org 418

Strange Fire on The Altar

How to Retain Your Spiritual Authority for Ministry

Today, we are considering something that is very interesting, interesting to God and something that we must be interested in. Today we want to look at "Strange Fire on The Altar." I am sure most of us, if not all of us, are aware of the implication or the meaning of Strange fire on the Altar. We have watched a number of films and we have as well listened to a number of sermons and our attention over the years have been called to the danger of offering strange fire on the altar. But today we want to examine an aspect of it which is "How to Retain Your Spiritual Authority for Ministry." Considering Strange fire on the altar, we want to see: How you and I can retain our spiritual authority for ministry.

 

Listen To Podcast: STRANGE FIRE ON THE ALTAR: HOW TO RETAIN YOUR SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY FOR MINISTRY

 

I am sure you understand that Ministry is you representing God on the earth. Ministry is you running an errand for God on the earth for a purpose that is released or disclosed to you from the Lord. So, you receive a vision from the Lord and you continue to run with it. Each time that happens, you are said to be in ministry. So, while God has so much to get done on the earth, God actually gets everything done on the earth though His ministers. As a minister of the gospel, your authority is the basis for your influence and effectiveness on the earth. If you lack spiritual authority, then you will lack spiritual influence on the earth. If anyone would respect you, listen to you, obey you, it is because there is an authority backing you up.

 

I am sure you remember the sons of Sceva that the Bible shows us their story in the book of Acts of the apostles, they were exorcists and that was what they do for a living in those days. All they do was to use whatever means they had to cast out spirits. Now, when they saw Paul and the other apostles doing miracles, they were so much attracted to it and they felt adding this power to the retinue of other powers they already have would make their business to flourish. So, they went to a demon-possessed man and said "We exorcise you in the name of Jesus that Paul preach." And the demon-possessed man said "Jesus I Know, Paul I know, but who are you?" Now, what the demon was actually referring to there was their authority in the spirit.

 

Now, they would have been able to command the demons to get out if only they were authorize by God to do it. So, they would have no power over those demons except the power of God was available for them. And you see, power accompanies authority. The issue is not that many of us don't have any form of spiritual authority. The greatest issue is that we don't usually retain the authority that God gives to us. And the question is: How do we lose the authority of God? And if we can know how we lose them, then we can begin to have an idea about how you and I can retain the spiritual authority that is backing us up in the course of doing the work that God has called us into. I want to start this discussion with the book of Hosea 4:6, a popular Scripture that we love to read in the church today. Hosea 4:6, the Bible says:

 

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Because you have rejected knowledge,
I also will reject you from being priest for Me;
Because you have forgotten the law of your God,
I also will forget your children.

 

You see, one thing that we know in leadership, in ministry is succession and so, it is advised that if you are in ministry or in leadership, you must have a succession plan. You don't only exercise your authority, you must be able to pass your authority on to the people coming behind you. Now, for the priest, it is expected that the authority of God on their lives should be passed on to their children. And God made a profound statement, and said "Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children." So, since you are not able to retain the knowledge of God in your heart, then the people coming after you will no longer be regarded by God.

 

So, the question is: What happens to a priest who has forgotten the law of the Lord his God or her God? Now when a priest cannot remember the law of God, then it means the priest is lacking in the knowledge of God. Because the knowledge of the law of God is also rooted in the knowledge of God. You cannot be ignorant in the law of God and still be knowledgeable in the work. And so, even in Daniel 11:32, the Bible says "but the people who know their God they shall be strong and they shall carry out great exploits." Why will they carry out great exploits? Because they know their God. And did they know their God? Through knowing the law of their God. So, what God was actually referring to in Hosea 4:6 is this: These people's children will be forgotten by God simply because their fathers have actually displayed ignorance of their God. Their fathers don't know God, then the question is: How will their children get to know God?

 

And so, when a man does not know God, and yet he wants to worship God who is Spirit, the danger is that such a man will be vulnerable in the spirit. Such a man while trying to look for God and please God and worship God will find himself actually worshipping any other thing other than God. Now, there was a point I noted and I want to read it out. I observed that if you don't know the true God, you will fall for and serve any god in your ignorance. And that is what God was frowning at. Since you have rejected knowledge, I the Lord will also reject you from being priest. Because this is the issue: A priest is someone who is a mediator between God and men. Somebody who brings the petition of the people to God and who brings the response of God to the people.

 

A priest is the link or the intermediary between God and his people. So, if the people who are expected to represent God, if they are lacking in the knowledge of God, then what happens? They will fail in representing God to the people. So God said as long as you fail to retain my knowledge in your heart, then I will refuse you from continuing in your service in my presence, lest while you are trying to serve me, you end up serving other gods. Let us see a case in the book of Jeremiah chapter 7 that shows us a good example of a people who could originally begin in the service of God in offering sacrifices to God and then end up offering strange fire on their altar. Let us see Jeremiah 7 and I will read a few verses there. The Bible says from verse 12:

 

“But go now to My place which was in Shiloh, where I set My name at the first, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of My people Israel. 13 And now, because you have done all these works,” says the Lord, “and I spoke to you, rising up early and speaking, but you did not hear, and I called you, but you did not answer, 14 therefore I will do to the house which is called by My name, in which you trust, and to this place which I gave to you and your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of My sight, as I have cast out all your brethren—the whole posterity of Ephraim. 16 “Therefore do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them, nor make intercession to Me; for I will not hear you. 17 Do you not see what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 16 “Therefore do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them, nor make intercession to Me; for I will not hear you. 17 Do you not see what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough, to make cakes for the queen of heaven; and they pour out drink offerings to other gods, that they may provoke Me to anger. 19 Do they provoke Me to anger?” says the Lord. “Do they not provoke themselves, to the shame of their own faces?” 20 Therefore thus says the Lord God: “Behold, My anger and My fury will be poured

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Strange Fire on The Altar: How to Retain Your Spiritual Authority for Ministry
out on this place—on man and on beast, on the trees of the field and on the fruit of the ground. And it will burn and not be quenched.”

 

So if you examine what happened there, you will see that originally, the place that God has designated for His worship in Shiloh began well. But eventually, the people went into wickedness and so, God punished them there. Now, God was now referring to a generation that were now born after that incidence and God said "have you forgotten what I did at Shiloh? When people became wicked and were no more serving me? In fact, what I did to them, I will do to you." And so that Jeremiah will not continue to intercede for these people before God, God told him in verse 18 "The children gather wood, the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough, to make cakes for the queen of heaven;"

 

The question is: when they were trying to make cake for the queen of heaven originally, what were they thinking they were doing? I am sure there is a tendency for them to assume they are offering things to God. But because of their ignorance of the true God, any god was offered unto except the living God. That is what ignorance does! Since you don't know God very well, and you have responded to the call unto ministry; there is a great tendency for you to offer unto God any kind of fire on your altar - for you to think as long as you are doing it in the name of God, God should accept it. It is possible today for our fellowships and our church auditoriums to become places where comedians make people to laugh. It is possible for those places to become discos grounds where you simply dance any kind of dances.

 

Now when people are dancing in the house of God in quote, they believe they are offering sacrifices unto the living God. But the question is: do these always happen in our meeting places? Do we always offer fire that is unto the Living God or we offer strange fires on our altars? And that is why if you don't understand these things, you will ask yourself, we used to be a people of fire for the true God and for His true purpose on the earth. We used to pant after God, but what has happened? That instead of us panting for God, we are now panting for something else or for someone else. What has happened is you have began as a people to offer strange fire on your altar. Your ministry is now doing something that was not intended for the true God but for any God.

 

You see, as long as you do things with your earth of worship, something will accept it from you. A spirit will accept it from you, it may not be the living God. That is why we should start checking things out, what is happening in our churches, in our places of worship, in the lives of the people who are excited every week under our ministrations. Under the kind of worship services we organize, what is the produce in their life? What kind of life are they living? Are they living in the fear of God or are they living carelessly? Now that will show you who is actually being sacrificed unto in our meeting places every Sunday and every meeting service. It is not enough to say Jesus or to say God, the question is: Whom are you offering your sacrifices unto? Who is glorified in your songs? Who is glorified in your sermons? Who is glorified in your offerings? Who is glorified in your tithes? In your conduct of evangelism and every kind of thing you do in your church; who is glorified. Is it unto God or unto the queen of heaven or other gods?

 

These are things that we must examine, lest we lose our authority. God said "because you have forsaken knowledge, I also will reject you." You rejected my knowledge, I also reject you from being priests. My Prayer is that God will not reject you, from being an apostle, from being a prophet, from being an evangelist, from being a pastor, from being a teacher in His house in the name of Jesus. You have been called as a man of prayer, a woman of prayer; a voice of God in this generation; my prayer is that God will not reject you. You have started well with God, you will not go in search of the unknown gods and worshipping strange gods in Jesus' name. Your heart will pant for the living God, you will not offer sacrifices unto a strange god.

 

You know in Jeremiah 2:13, God said something that I want us to read here.

 

“For My people have committed two evils:
They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters,
And hewn themselves cisterns—broken cisterns that can hold no water.

 

This gives us a summary or a picture of what we have been talking about. For a people to forsake God, then it means they used to be with God but they are no longer with Him. I pray that you will not commit any of these two evils, you will be with God and stand for God in your own generation, and God will be glorified in your life, in your ministry and you will be fulfilled in the name of Jesus.

 

Thank you for the gift of your time, this is what the Lord has laid in my heart "Strange Fire on The Altar: How You and I Can Retain Our Spiritual Authority for Ministry" that God has called us into. I pray that God will continue to uphold you, God will continue to make you a voice and a light that shines in darkness, and darkness cannot comprehend in Jesus' mighty name. My name is Gboyega Adedeji and you have been listening to Forms and Patterns. I hope to connect with you again next week Friday, I want you to stay leading, I want you to stay serving, be a true ambassador of God and no longer an ambassador of Satan or ambassador of demons.

 

God bless you!


Thanks for the gift of your time, I am Gboyega Adedeji!

Feel free to share your thoughts or testimony with me in the comment box below. I promise to respond to them as soon as possible!


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Word of Confession: (Optional)

Lord Jesus, I confess to you that I have sinned against the LORD God - in the rebellion of my heart, I have disappointed your expectations on my life. I have fallen from Your grace and followed wrong influences around me. Today, I retrace my steps back to you - and I ask that in your mercy you accept me as your son and give to me (again) the promise of the Father - the Holy Spirit. Lord Jesus, please, come and make my heart your home, and from there rule in the affairs of all men. In Jesus Name I have prayed.



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On what foundation are you building your marriage, business, ministry or carrier? The wind, storm and rains will definitely come with their own unique kind of test. Your foundation will determine if you will either stand or get blown away......


Published: Apeh Francis Abah | Thursday 10th October 2019


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