THE REFINER'S FIRE
"Who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner's fire or a launderer's soap" (Malachi 3:2, NIV).
The very last portrait of Christ in the Old Testament is that of the "refiner's fire." He "will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver" (Malachi 3:3, NIV). The imagery is descriptive of the regenerative work of Christ through the Holy Spirit. Fire is used throughout the Bible as a symbol of cleansing. Christ pointed to "gold refined in the fire" as an effective remedy for Laodicean spiritual poverty (Revelation 3:18, NIV).
The refiner's fire is not intended to consume or destroy the silver, but to purify and strengthen it. The refiner's fire is God's way of preparing His people for heaven. It is a work of judgement that purifies and separates the impurities from the silver. Not only does the refiner seek to separate or remove all the dross from the silver; he also endeavors to shape it into a thing of beauty. Daniel expressed it beautifully: "Many will be purified, made spotless and refined" (Daniel 12:9, NIV).
The great Refiner is patiently, quietly, and progressively consuming the dross until His character can be reflected fully through the pure silver of our sanctified lives. In a personal counsel to one going through the refiner's fire, Ellen G. White wrote: "As a refiner and purifier of silver, He kept His eye upon you, watching the process of purification until He should discern His image reflected in you."--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p. 269.
My Prayer Today: Lord, I humbly submit to the Refiner's fire. May I finally reflect His image in all its beauty. Amen.