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According to, Isaiah 40:18, “To whom then will ye liken God? Or what likeness will ye compare unto him?” God is not man, but He became a man to die for the sins of mankind and reconcile man to God. In life there are many things that confront us; but the bible said in Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” God has His master plan for each of His children from the foundation of the world.

During my childhood I visited a goldsmith shop with a friend. It was a pleasant experience. A goldsmith is someone who makes objects from gold, cleans and brightens any gold material. Several tools are found in the goldsmith shop including pliers, ring formers, long and wide beaks, cutters, liquids. Water is also needed in a goldsmith’s shop, but most importantly, a billow and charcoal. The billow is a source of air to fan the fire to get the temperature to the required level.

As I walked with my friend into the goldsmith’s shop, I recognized that the atmosphere was hot. He showed us a rustic piece that he was going to put to the heated little furnace. I paid not much attention to the rustic material that looked like a small lump. My attention was on the source of the fire. He was puffing the fire through a double-sided puffing devise called a billow made of hard leather with a stick rod on top. It looked like a balloon tied to a stick rod from the upper side. Generally pushed up and down to fan the fire pit.

As the goldsmith pushed down on the billows alternatively it pushed air into the fire and increased the temperature until the desired level was reached. Then it was time to put in the rustic lump. With passage of time and with him turning the lump around, the size of the lump decreased, and the remaining lump began to take on some glow. When I asked him the reason for the reduction in the size of the lump, he explained that a lot of chaff was burnt out and that the real material was coming up. He brought it out, dipped it in a solution and water and put it back in the little furnace and applied the billows again. He said he needed to increase the temperature to get the material called gold. He would transfer it to a pan; to melt and shape it the way he wanted with the perfect and desired shine.

Now that I am more mature, I have a better understanding of what the goldsmith did on our visit, and I can relate it to my Christian life. Job said in Job 23:10, “But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.”

Right now, on earth every Christian is a hidden gem like gold. There is no glare or shine to them. They have not gone through the furnace completely. Every true believer will go through the furnace for a cleansing action. These cleansing agents include trials, sufferings, cruel mocking and much more as can be found in Hebrews 11.  According to evangelist Charles Price of the 16th century as quoted by Neal Frisby, “ Some trials will be absolute necessity for the clearing away of all infirmities of the natural mind and the burning away of all wood and stubble nothing must remain in the fire, as a refiner’s fire so shall He purify the Sons of the Kingdom.” I know when he hath tried me I shall come forth as gold.

In this life every true child of God must go through the furnace; the required temperature must be reached, for each child of God, before a glimpse of shine will appear. The Master Goldsmith (JESUS CHRIST) is the one who determines the required temperature at which each of His children will put on a glow. This glow is a trademark that identifies you as His child. The ultimate glow will come with the translation because we are sealed by the Holy Ghost until the day of redemption.

According to Apostle Paul, every child of God goes through chastisement; only bastards do not experience fatherly chastisement (Hebrews 12: 8). Let us be comforted as we count our own experiences, to help us know that in most cases God allows us or makes us go through the furnace for our own eventual good. Remember that according to Romans 8:28, all things work together for our own good.

As we go through the furnace, no matter how hot it gets, keep Jeremiah 29:11, always before you which reads, “For I know the thoughts I have towards you are for your good to give you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, not of evil, to give you an expected end. Yes, you may be in the furnace like the three Hebrew children, but He knows His thoughts towards you, even from the foundation of the world. This is comforting to know and believe it as you go through the furnace.

Imagine Lazarus and the rich man, Lk 16:20-21. Lazarus in the furnace–he suffered hunger, neglect, despised, full of sores, sitting at a gate looking for help and received none; even dogs leaked his sores. He still looked up to God. He went through his own furnace period, like Job who said in Job 13:15, “Though He slay me yet will I trust him.” That is supposed to be the attitude of every believer going through the burning furnace. Your present fiery burning furnace experience is serving your future glory.

These different trials and problems are just the goldsmith’s billows at work to raise the temperature to the required level to help burn off the dross and refine the real gold. That’s why some trials are absolute necessities. What are you going through that is new under the sun? You are not the first in the furnace and you will likely not be the last. Paul said in Philippians 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord always.” The Lord told Paul in one of his furnace experiences, “My grace is sufficient for you” (2 Corinthians 12: 9). When you are in the furnace, the Lord is with you, remember Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

The Lord appeared to Paul during his shipwreck furnace and comforted him. Paul and Silas sang and praised God while in jail going through their furnace encounter. Peter and Daniel slept soundly in jail and in the lions’ den furnace respectively. They were not sleepless like many of us would have been. In the furnace your level of trust and confidence in the Lord is made manifest. As you endure hardship, pain, suffering even unto death, your attitude towards the Word of God will make you shine or burn as chaff. Hebrews 11 details many who went through the furnace and came out with good report. Some were sawn asunder and burnt. Likely, they remembered Deuteronomy 31:6 which reads, “Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doeth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.” He is there to see you through the furnace, just hold fast and remain faithful in the hand of the Refiner with His billow.

Look at brother Stephen, the martyr. As they were stoning him, the billow was in full capacity, the heat was on. He was not crying but had the Spirit of God manifested in him, while in the furnace. He had the peace of mind to say “Lord, bring not this sin to their charge.” As they were stoning him, the God of comfort showed him heaven. He said, “I see heaven opened and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God,” (Acts 7:54-59). When you are going through the furnace, sometimes you are comforted by a revelation, like Stephen. If you are God’s gold, the furnace will bring you out shining as the billow blow at the command of the Master Goldsmith. He knows the required temperature for you to shine. He promised that He will not pass you through what you cannot bear. He knows your framework and is in absolute control.

You may be in the furnace right now or you may be approaching it, or you may not know you are in one. When the Master Goldsmith sits down and gradually starts applying the billows, then you will know that the furnace is on. Whatever you may be going through, think again, because our Lord Jesus Christ may be working on you right then. He may be turning you in the furnace to heat up some areas of your life. Remember that without a doubt He is with you in the furnace. He promised I will never leave you nor forsake you. He kept His promise with the three Hebrew children in the days of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon. The fourth man was in the fiery burning furnace of fire. The king said, I see a fourth man like unto the Son of God, (Daniel 3:24-25). Thus, confirming the Lord’s statement that I will never leave you nor forsake you.

The lions were friendly to Daniel in the den. They did not attack him. Jesus Christ was there with him as the Lion of the tribe of Judah. The lions may have noticed His presence and behaved as He was the Lion in charge. I will never leave you nor forsake you, saith the Lord (Hebrews 13:5). They that suffer with the Lord will reign with Him in glory (2 Timothy 2:12).

In Genesis 22:1-18, Abraham, our father of faith, went through the burning furnace when he was confronted with sacrificing his only child of promise. When God demanded that, he did not confer with Sarah for second opinion. He prepared and went to do as he was instructed. He did not form a committee to examine what God said. He was sorrowful but endured hardship as a good soldier. As he got to the mount Isaac asked his father, “Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering.” This was like God billowing more heat on Abraham who was in the fire. Abraham calmly answered, “God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering.” Imagine what was going on in the heart of a man over 100years old. When can I have another child? Sarah is also old, is this God’s perfect will? What will I tell Sarah?

Abraham got to the spot on the mount appointed by God. According to Genesis 22:9, Abraham built an altar there, laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. And Abraham stretched forth his hand and took the knife to slay his son. This is the furnace experience, and the Lord said, I will never leave you nor forsake you.  As Abraham stretched his hand to slay his son Isaac, which was the hottest point of the furnace; in obedience to God, he shone as gold and the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven saying, “Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou anything unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not with-held thy son, thine only son from me” (Genesis 21: 11 &12). This was how Abraham came out of the fiery burning furnace shinning as gold and smelling as a rose flower. He overcame by faith and confidence in the Lord his God. When you are going through the furnace, God shows his presence by revelations in your heart, if your heart is stayed upon him. In Hebrews 11:19 we read that while Abraham was in the furnace, “he accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.” Thank God for the fiery burning furnace in our lives. I do not what kind of furnace you are in, what stage or how hot the billow is blowing on you. Hold fast, confess your sins if you are in one; turn to the Lord and remember I will not leave nor forsake you. People turn away from God and say He has forsaken them; no sir, He said He is married to the backslider, only turn to Him while there is still the time and opportunity. It may soon be too late to return to the cross. In an hour you think not; in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye. He who endures till the end joins those in Hebrews 11, amen. The fiery burning furnace is to bring out the gold you are. You may be going through one of these parts of the furnace, family matters, children, barrenness, old age, health, financial, employment, spiritual, housing and much more. Remember the Lord is with you and He is the only solution. Just put away secret or open sins as you go through the furnace.

According to Charles Price, “There shall be a total and full redemption by Christ (the Master Goldsmith). This is a hidden mystery not to be understood without the revelation of the Holy Spirit. Jesus is at hand to reveal the same into all holy seekers and loving inquirers. He that endures till the end shall be saved. He that overcometh shall inherit all things, according to Revelation 21:7. I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me as in Philippians 4:13. This includes going through the burning furnace like those in Hebrews 11; that endured all things, had a good report and stayed in hope awaiting the redemption of their body and they shall shine as stars and come forth as pure gold. The burning furnace is often for our own good. The Lord went through the furnace for us without sin. The cross of Calvary was more than a furnace for one man; it was a fiery, burning furnace for all of mankind, including you. He endured the cross for the joy that was set before Him. The joy was the reconciliation of man to Himself, to all those who believe. So, like the Lord Jesus Christ, let us look with joy to the promise given to use in John 14:1-3; when He comes to take us home to glory. He that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in My throne Rev.3:21, Amen.

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