What Does Fire Represent?

(pp. 90-91, The Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation, CFP white covers, by Watchman Nee)

“And his eyes were as a flame of fire”—A flame of fire is able to illuminate things. The eyes of the Lord are as a flame of fire, therefore He can search the reins and hearts of men (cf. Rev. 2.23). Nothing can be hidden from Him. Whenever His flaming eyes perceive something at odds with His holiness, He will judge and condemn. He is light and He himself is the Illumination. He will search out sins, causing the righteous to be preserved in purity and the evil to go to perdition. When the Book of Malachi speaks of the Lord’s appearing, it asserts that “he is like a refiner’s fire” (3.2). During the time of the restoration of Israel, the Lord will purge the Jews “by the spirit of justice, and by the spirit of burning” (see Is. 4.3-4).

When we stand before the judgment seat of Christ, the Lord will use fire to prove each man’s work: “For the day shall declare it, because it is revealed in fire; and the fire itself shall prove each man’s work of what sort it is” (1 Cor. 3.13)—“Wherefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and make manifest the counsels of the hearts; and then shall each man have his praise from God” (1 Cor. 4.5)—“For we must all be made manifest before the judgment seat of Christ; that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (2 Cor. 5.10). We should remember that “there is no creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and laid open before the eyes of him with whom we have to do” (Heb. 4.13). Who can escape before such eyes? Not one of us. Therefore let us sing this song today:


Daily lift I up my eyes,

                        the light of judgment-seat survey;

May all my life and work

                    stand the fire of that great day.*

*A stanza of a hymn written by the author.-Translator