Divine Refinery

 

File:Red Lake Gold Ore, Red Lake Mine, Ontario, Canada.jpg
An ore of silver. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

 

Daily Devotion Monday June 19, 2017

See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction”

Isaiah 48:10

Pure silver, a precious metal which is found “embedded in several different minerals, namely copper, zinc and lead[1] is often obtained through a refinery process. The reason for refinery is to remove impurities from the ores of silver. Without the refinery process, there is hardly any pure silver which can be put to the desired use. As there is hardly any pure silver before refinery so is the human heart which must be refined if purity of the heart is to be obtained.

Sin has infested and infected the human heart that it is has become impure. The heart of man is impure, on itsin is written with an iron pen; it is engraved on [the] hearts [of man] with a diamond point” (Jer. 17:1 GNT). As such, “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked” (Jer. 17:9 NKJV). Without any biblical references, the wickedness of the human heart is very evident. What other than the wickedness of human heart can explain an action of a man ramming a heavy truck into a crowd? What other than the wickedness of the human heart can explain a man of age sexually molesting an infant? Isn’t it for the wicked heart that mankind must regulated all the time? Or, can man say there is no God without being enslaved by sin?

No one can claim purity of the heart, for everyone has a “deceitful heart” which is “desperately wicked.” Therefore, the heart must be refined if it is to be pure. This refinery can’t be done by any human means. Trying to be good alone cannot even purify the heart. A divine refinery is needed to obtain a pure heart. A refinery that is done by the potter, the one who has formed the heart. It is for this that God took human flesh in the person of Christ to do what we couldn’t do for ourselves. Through his death and resurrection, mankind can now be dead to sin and rise to purity of the heart.

In the past, God used several other methods including atonement through the blood of lambs and his hand of discipline to refine his people. Of Israel—a people of God in the Old Covenant, God said; “See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction” (Isaiah 48:10). In the New Covenant, the purification is obtained through the blood of the Lamb of God—Jesus Christ. Believing in Christ takes one to God’s surgical room where he performs the miracle of making the heart new; “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (II Cor. 5:17 NKJV).

This purification is not an instant occurrence albeit believing in Christ is the start of the divine refinery process.

As a patient must be in the surgical room if his surgery is to be complete, so a believer must not jump off God’s hands if this divine operation is to be complete. As a patient must follow the doctor’s instruction after surgery, a believer must continue in obedience to God’s word all his life after inviting Christ into his heart.

A believer must throughout his life desire nothing but the purity and holiness of the heart. His prayer should be;

Purify my heart Let me be as gold and precious silver. Purify my heart Let me be as gold, pure gold

Purify my heart Cleanse me from within. And make me holy Purify my heart Cleanse me from my sin Deep within[2]

Without divine refinery, mankind will remain in wickedness and be separated from God eternally. I pray that you persist in your faithfulness to Christ “so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honour at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (I Peter 1:7 NASB). Amen! Rev. J

________________________________________________________

Foot notes

[1] https://www.reference.com/science/process-refining-silver-e8c82a908d4a7e89

[2] Brian Doerksen in the song “Refiner’s fire” http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/b/brian_doerksen/refiners_fire.html


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Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are taken from the New International Version (NIV). Rev. Julius Izza Tabi is a pastor in the Anglican Church of Uganda, Ma’di & West Nile Diocese. Julius served as an assistant Chaplain and lecturer at the Arua Campus of the Uganda Christin University. He is a graduate of Master of Philosophy in Religion, Society and Global Issues at Det Teologiske Menighetsfakultet alias the Norwegian School of Theology, in Oslo, Norway. He is an author of the Popular Triumphing Over Odds . For pastoral assistance you can contact him here and you can also help to support this site and his ministry by donating here.

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