Holy Spirit and Fire!


:laughing: A eureka moment? Lets find out shall we? :slight_smile:

Luke 3:16 John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire:

Now, the word “baptize” is an interesting word. Notably because it has been argued over for eons between Sprinklers, and Immersers, but sufficed to say; “immersion” holds the best case. But I’m not here to argue that particular point, what I’m here to do is point out a little interpretation of this prophecy - for a prophecy it is indeed.

Lets look at the Greek real quick;

Apekrinato ho Ioannes apasin legon ego men hudati baptizo humas erchetai de ho ischuroteros mou hou ouk eimi hikanos lusai ton himanta ton hupodematon autou autos humas baptisei en pneumati hagio kai puri

John answers saying to all; “I indeed in water am baptizing you, yet coming is one stronger than I, the thong of whose sandals I am not competent to loose. He will be baptizing you in holy spirit and fire” -CLV

And for my translation of the relevant part;

“He will immerse you in the Holy Spirit and fire”

Now John “immerses” people with water. But Jesus will “immerse” people in The Holy Ghost, and also in Fire. But for what purpose will Jesus do this? Obviously the next verse would be quoted by our ETC proponents;
Luke 3:17 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.*

Pointing out with deft accuracy “the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable”. But what is being burned? The chaff of course. What is the chaff? Part of the plant, the same plant whence the grains of wheat are also a part. Wheat and Chaff are of the same plant, what is worthy in each individual plant will be gathered, what is worthless will be burned away as dross from silver in the refiner’s unquenchable fire. But even this fact is not quite my point that I want to express, what I want to show is rather…this.

Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

What is it that they are being thrown into? What is happening to these sinners? Why, first of all…a lake. Now, not just any lake, but a lake of fire. What happens when you are tossed into a lake? You become “immersed”… What is happening here is a mass case of prophetic fulfillment that went all the way back to John the Baptist. “He will immerse you in fire!” Here we find the chaff of every sinner being burned away, so the wheat may be gathered.

1 Corinthians 15:36-37 Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die: And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain:

After the Resurrection are these sinners, these plants which were sown and now grown up and quickened after their first death, thrown into the Lake of Fire; these are in bodies those in the Lake of Fire, who have been immersed in fire, and their wheat gathered as the chaff burned away.

And they’ve been given a body;

1 Corinthians 15:38 But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body.

And they are seeds, even the sinners, since the unjust are resurrected too. And so it follows that those who yet remain sinners in the Resurrection must, having died a first death which was required for their quickening; “except it die”, must die a second death in the prophesied fire that will burn away the chaff! And all shall have their chaff burned away.

1 Corinthians 3:13-15 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

And what to those who would say; “But they shall be fully consumed then, and cease!”

Lamentations 3:22 It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.

Psalm 100:5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Isaiah 55:7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

Dying to Sin is also an important factor in these verses, and the Second Death fulfills the process.

Romans 6:9-10 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.

Romans 6:11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

If one did not die to sin in “this life” then it stands to reason he must die to sin in the next, The Second Death which burns away the chaff. In dying to sin, we live unto God.

And last but not least, is that He will immerse not only in fire, but in The Holy Spirit.

“He will immerse you in the Holy Spirit and fire”

Shall The Lord immerse all in both? Is that not what it says? Will The Holy Spirit do his work on those whom are immersed in the Lake of Fire?

There is so much more I could say! But lets expand on this together. :slight_smile: Expand away!

Joe: The most frightful + wonderful view from the OT?
prepared for the devil and his angels

My first response is "Wow! :astonished: :open_mouth: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: "

This really is quite outstanding deduction, even if some say it’s not true. It’s just another case of me personally having not taken the time to chew on these bits of Scripture.

If I’d chewed on the wheat and the chaff, I would have seen that they’re on the same plant.

If I’d chewed on the lake of fire, I might have connected a lake with something into which people are thrown, and thereby immersed.

And this was my eureka moment:

All this time I’d been thinking the Christians might be “saved by the skin of their teeth”, but suddenly you’ve made it all so clear. It makes sense! Seemingly another verse for EU.

I for one think this is first-rate. I agree: let’s hear some more thoughts.


Nice work, I like the connections you’re drawing there, but too late at night for me to add anything :slight_smile:


Nice work Lefein, I’m liking this a lot! :smiley:


Here is a pretty good article that reiterates some of the concepts the OP has presented:



Interesting. Though I maintain Gehenna is the Lake of Fire, more importantly than the pit which is called Gehenna, the judgment of Gehenna which cut-off God’s people (Israel) so that those who were not God’s people (Everyone else) would be called Sons of God, grafted in by the Vine (Christ).

Not all fire is the same fire mentioned throughout Scripture. There is fire to light the way, there is fire that burns away, there are big fires, there are small fires. Fire is a universal metaphorical word for change, but not all change is the same.


Interesting thoughts Lefein in the OP! The two metaphors do seem to dovetail nicely, especially considering that:

  1. The LoF is in the presence of the Lamb and the presence of the Angels (Rev.14.10). Where does the Lamb sit? Next to the throne of God. What surrounds the throne of God? Angels.
  2. Scripture elsewhere says that God is an all-consuming fire.
  3. Brimstone (sulfur), theon, means divine fire.
  4. Brimstone was burnt as incense both for spiritual purification (to ward off evil) and for physical healing.
  5. Hot sulfur (brimstone) springs were widely known for their healing properties.
  6. Torment, basanizo, means to test gold/silver by rubbing it against a touchstone to reveal how pure the metal is, to determine if it needs more fire.

Considering these things, I believe the LoF is the “Volcanic lake of the all-consuming, purifying, healing presense of God!” So to me this does dovetail well with being “baptized in the Holy Spirit and fire”, and Paul’s note that such fire purifies what is good in us and burns up what is evil!

Of course, this is assuming that one is interpreting Revelation futuristically. If one interprets it Preteristically, Historically, or Metaphorically, one will see something else.


Enjoyed reading that Lefein! Will have to reflect more on it. I’m always amazed at how much is there that I never put together. I do think you’ve made some nice sense of things. Wish I could articulate it more, but I’ve got to get some sleep too. :slight_smile:


I agree (link)
and I am glad you got a hearing on this.
Good job with references and communication! :slight_smile:


Good stuff, Lefein! Really expresses and crystallizes thoughts I’ve been having along those lines. My meditations were triggered by Mark 9:49: “Everyone will be salted with fire.” In fact, it’d be interesting to figure out how Jesus’ teaching in those verses (9:42-50) fits in with what you’re synthesizing here… :nerd:


I’m glad to find so many people blessed by this. :slight_smile:



I have been pondering these things and believe there is even more that can be said.

  • baptism for the believer involves being “thrown” down into the water, and then being raised out of it but your sins (figuratively of course) being left in the water

  • baptism in the Holy Spirit and fire involves being “thrown” down in the lake of fire, where the Holy Spirit will do his sanctifying work and then being raised out of the lake but leaving sins behind

  • John’s baptism was specifically for repentance (John said to the pharisees not to be baptised but to produce fruit in keeping with repentance)

  • lake of fire baptism is also for repentance

  • John was speaking at this time to the pharisees and scribes, not the general public. He told them that they’d “need” a different baptism. This accords with Jesus’ followers not going through the lake of fire

  • It’s unlikely that John’s prophecy about “Holy Spirit and fire” had anything to do with the upper room at pentecost, since Jesus’ disciples were still fishing at the time

  • John says that Jesus will “thoroughly cleanse his floor”, meaning he won’t stop the threshing until every last bit of chaff is gone, until every last person is saved from their sin (which of course is why Jesus came)

  • John says that Jesus will gather “his” wheat into the barn, but “the” chaff to the fire, lending weight to the idea that the wheat are God’s creatures, the ones who belong to Him, but “the” chaff is not supposed to be there.

  • The “unquenchable”: obviously ECT take this to mean endless fiery torment for the damned. But I take it to mean that the consuming fire, the purifying fire which God uses to bring about repentance will keep burning until it has done it’s work. Nothing will stop the fire from accomplishing the purpose for which God set it up. When there is no more “fuel” for the fire, it will die.

  • It helps me put into perspective the meaning of “prepared for the devil and his angels”. God even meant to reconcile the worst of the worst.

With all of this, I am seeing this connection more and more as a really spot-on thing. I see the lake of fire not as a neverending torture by a supposedly loving God, but as mercy. Mercy enough to completely destroy sin, bring about complete repentance and rescue his creation from the lake.


Amen Rline.


Good stuff, guys.

Craig, what is up with that picture of you? It looks like you’ve just been hanging out in a coal mine…


Hi everyone,

I just wanted to offer an alternative interpretation of the “baptism with the Holy Spirit/with fire” that I believe is just as consistent with UR as the view advanced in the OP. I see the “baptism with fire” of which John speaks in Luke 3:16-17 as simply being the second national “death” of the Jewish nation, which took place in 70 AD (How Universalism Has Impacted my Life). Previous to these verses John declared to the religious elite, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruits in keeping with repentance…Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire” (3:7-9). The “wrath to come” of which John spoke was, I believe, an imminent judgment for the Jewish nation, not a post-mortem (or end-of-time) judgment for every person who has ever lived. John was, I believe, prophesying of the same kind of judgment upon the Jewish people as was prophesied by Jeremiah. Notice the similar language used by Jeremiah:

Moreover, it seems likely that the “fire” of vv. 16-17 is the same “fire” referred to in v. 9, which is the same as the “wrath to come” of v. 7. This “fire” is not for all people universally but rather was for those Jews who did not “bear good fruit.” To say that John was declaring that Christ was going to baptize everyone to whom he spoke - let alone everyone who has ever lived! - with both fire and the Holy Spirit is to say that everyone would be baptized with the Holy Spirit and no one would escape the “wrath to come.” For again, the context strongly suggests that the “wrath to come” is in fact the “fire” with which Christ was going to “baptize” certain people. But we read elsewhere that Christ was going to deliver believers from the “wrath to come” (1 Thess 1:10; 5:9; Rom 5:9). IOW, believers were not going to be “baptized with fire.”

But what about John’s words “he will baptize you…?” Well, John had already used the word “you” in an indefinite way when he said “I baptize you with water” (v. 16), when in fact he had not yet baptized those to whom he spoke, and it is likely that some of those to whom he spoke did not, in fact, submit to John’s baptism (cf. Lk. 7:30), especially after John’s stern rebuke and warning. So John’s words could perhaps be understood as implicitly conditional - i.e., John baptized them with water if they chose to comply with the conditions (e.g., repentance). Similarly, Jesus would baptize them with the “Holy Spirit” if they believed on him as the Messiah, but he would baptize them with “fire” if they rejected him as the Messiah.

Another way of understanding John’s “you” is that he was addressing a mixed audience when the promise was made, so the “you” in v. 11 could be understood to take into account both those Jews who believed and those Jews who didn’t believe. Understood in this way, “baptism with the Holy Spirit” could refer to one party (the believing Jews or “fruitful trees”) and “baptism with fire” to the other party (the unbelieving and impenitent Jews, or “unfruitful trees”). Either interpretation, I believe, takes into account the warning tone of the passage better than that view which sees both the baptism with the Holy Spirit and the baptism with fire as taking place for all people without exception.

Does this mean, then, that those who were baptized with fire were not baptized with the Holy Spirit, and that those who were baptized with the Holy Spirit were not baptized with fire? Yes, but this fact poses no problem for the believer in UR. John simply had in view the people and nation of Israel and events that were to take place in the 1st century land of Judea, not the post-mortem fate of those to whom he spoke, or of every person who would ever live.


I went into a time machine and took a picture of myself 40 years in the future. Came back and posted it.