Strange 🔥 🔥 🔥

Strange Fire

Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, who ministered in the holy office of priesthood, partook freely of wine and, as was their usual custom, went in to minister before the Lord. The priests who burned incense before the Lord were required to use the fire of God’s kindling, which burned day and night and was never extinguished. God gave explicit directions how every part of His service should be conducted, that all connected with His sacred worship might be in accordance with His holy character. And any deviation from the express directions of God in connection with His holy service was punishable with death. Con 80.1No sacrifice would be acceptable to God which was not salted or seasoned with divine fire, which represented the communication between God and man that was opened through Jesus Christ alone. The holy fire which was to be put upon the censer was kept burning perpetually. And while the people of God were without, earnestly praying, the incense kindled by the holy fire was to arise before God mingled with their prayers. This incense was an emblem of the mediation of Christ. Con 80.2Aaron’s sons took the common fire, which God did not accept, and they offered insult to the infinite God by presenting this strange fire before Him. God consumed them by fire for their positive disregard of His express directions. All their works were as the offering of Cain. There was no divine Saviour represented. Had these sons of Aaron been in full command of their reasoning faculties they would have discerned the difference between the common and sacred fire. The gratification of appetite debased their faculties and so beclouded their intellect that their power of discernment was gone. They fully understood the holy character of the typical service, and the awful solemnity and responsibility assumed of presenting themselves before God to minister in sacred service. Con 81.1Some may inquire, How could the sons of Aaron have been accountable when their intellects were so far paralyzed by intoxication that they were not able to discern the difference between sacred and common fire? It was when they put the cup to their lips that they made themselves responsible for all their acts committed while under the influence of wine. The indulgence of appetite cost those priests their lives. God expressly forbade the use of wine that would have an influence to becloud the intellect. Con 81.2“And the Lord spake unto Aaron, saying, Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations: and that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; and that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the Lord hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses.” Con 81.3The special injunction of God to the Hebrews in reference to the use of intoxicating liquors should be regarded in this dispensation. But many who are holding the highest responsibilities in our country are, in too many cases, liquor-and-tobacco slaves. Con 82.1Jurors in our courts, by whose verdict the innocence or guilt of their fellow men is decided, are many of them liquor-drinkers and tobacco-inebriates. And, while under the influence of these, which becloud the intellect and debase the soul, judgment is given upon the liberty and life of their fellow men. Con 82.2Perverted judgment in many cases clears from all punishment the greatest criminals, when the safety of society demands they should receive the full penalty of the law which they have violated. Con 82.3The men who are legislating, and those who are executing the laws of our government, while they are violating the laws of their being in debasing appetites, which stupefy and paralyze the intellect, are not fitted to decide the destiny of their fellow men. Those only who feel the necessity of keeping soul, body, and spirit in conformity to natural law, to the end that they may preserve the right balance of their mental powers, are fitted to decide important questions in reference to the execution of the law of our land. This was the mind of God by decrees to the Hebrews that wine should not be used by those who ministered in holy office. Con 82.4Here we have the most plain directions of God, and His reasons for prohibiting the use of wine; that their power of discrimination and discernment might be clear, and in no way confused; that their judgment might be correct, and they be ever able to discern between the clean and unclean. Another reason of weighty importance why they should abstain from anything which would intoxicate is also given. It would require the full use of unclouded reason to present to the children of Israel all the statutes which God had spoken to them. Con 82.5Anything in eating and drinking which disqualifies the mental powers for healthful and active exercise is an aggravating sin in the sight of God. Especially is this the case with those who minister in holy things, who should at all times be examples to the people and be in a condition to properly instruct them. Con 83.1Notwithstanding they have this striking example before them, some professed Christians will desecrate the house of God with breaths polluted with the fumes of liquor and tobacco. And the spittoons are sometimes filled with the ejected spittle and quids of tobacco. The effluvia is constantly arising from these receptacles, polluting the atmosphere. Men professing to be Christians bow to worship God, and dare to pray to Him, with their lips stained by tobacco, while their half-paralyzed nerves tremble from the exhausting use of this powerful narcotic. And this is the devotion they offer to a holy and sin-hating God. Ministers in the sacred desk, with mouth and lips defiled, dare to take the sacred word of God in their polluted lips. They think God does not notice their sinful indulgence. “Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.” God will no more receive a sacrifice from the hands of those who thus pollute themselves, and offer with their service the incense of tobacco and liquor, than He would receive the offering of the sons of Aaron, who offered incense with strange fire. Con 83.2God has not changed. He is as particular and exact in His requirements now as He was in the days of Moses. But in the sanctuaries of worship in our day, with the songs of praise, the prayers, and the teaching from the pulpit, there is not merely strange fire but positive defilement. Instead of truth being preached with holy unction from God, it is sometimes spoken under the influence of tobacco and brandy. Strange fire indeed! Bible truth and Bible holiness are presented to the people, and prayers are offered to God, mingled with the stench of tobacco! Such incense is most acceptable to Satan! A terrible deception is this! What an offense in the sight of God! What an insult to Him who is holy, dwelling in light unapproachable! Con 84.1If the faculties of the mind were in healthful vigor professed Christians would discern the inconsistency of such worship. Like Nadab and Abihu, their sensibilities are so blunted that they make no difference between the sacred and common. Holy and sacred things are brought down upon a level with their tobacconized breaths, benumbed brains, and their polluted souls, defiled through indulgence of appetite and passion. Professed Christians eat and drink, smoke and chew tobacco, and become gluttons and drunkards, to gratify appetite, and still talk of overcoming as Christ overcame! Con 84.2

One thought on “Strange 🔥 🔥 🔥

  1. We should not be careless or indifferent to things of God, but should strive always to ensure total compliance to the commands of God which includes the Sabbath Commandment, the fourth Commandment. Look at Deuteronomy 5:12

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