Brand Plucked out of the fire
"And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; ... is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?"(1)   The
'brand' (burning stick) here represents the nation of Israel
(Jerusalem) in the person of Joshua, during the postexilic period,
which the Lord redeemed by His mercy from their sinful ways and Babylonian exile.  Each believer is a 'burning stick' the
Lord has snatched from the 'fire of judgment and destruction'
(2)  through His completed finished work at Calvary.  How
increasingly seldom, today, we hear about the fate which awaits those who either refuse to accept Christ's saving grace or
have fallen away from their first love
(3)  and backslidden into a Laodicean-type(4)  complacency and false sense of security.  
If a 'brand' does not know it
(s/he) is in the fire or about to be consumed, it most likely will not be ardently searching for a
means by which it may be 'snatched out' of the devouring ravaging flames.  The 'self-help' type gospel being preached in
many corners of the 'church' today can draw a large and boisterous attendance.  When "I determined not to know any
thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified"
(5)  is preached in second and third-world countries where people
are giving themselves over to repentance and searching for
the way(6)  (to be plucked) out of oppression there are large
numbers of salvation's, conversions, rededication's and moves of the Spirit.  As the 'righteousness of God'
(7)  continues to
uncover and reveal the hidden things in our political system, in some religious institutions, and in the hearts of men ... we
will come to understand the verse that reads
: "But if our unrighteousness brings out God's righteousness more clearly,
what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? ... Certainly not! If that were so, how could God judge
the world?"
(6)  God's judgment is surely coming and some 'brands' (people) will not be snatched from verdict's fire by their
own choosing, for "they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge.  Since they did not know the
righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness."
"Let your roots grow down into Him and draw up nourishment from Him. See that you go on growing in the Lord, and
become strong and vigorous in the truth you were taught.  Let your lives overflow with joy and thanksgiving for all He has
(9)   To be a 'brand' (soul) plucked out of the fire is just the beginning of our new life(10)  in and through Christ.  Once
redeemed, we must seek to deepen our spiritual root structure and pull our sustenance from Him and His rich soil of
promise and fellowship.  We seem to hear less and less in ministry today about the trials and tribulations
(11) believer's
experience as they navigate His pathway of righteousness
(12).  Our faith seems to grow stronger as we are able to endure
and stand against the storms of life that tug, yank and wrench against the anchor we have in Christ.
(13)   Unless the root is
tested and forced to grow deeper for its nutrients and strength, it only draws upon the shallow subsurface for its livelihood
(i.e., the secular world).
As knowledge increases(14)  and prosperity abounds, man will be less and less likely to seek his security in 'spiritual things'
through increasing his faith.  When adversity comes man is often easily 'pulled up' by his shallow roots and may not
survive a dry spell, much less a drought
(both spiritual and material).  Listen ever so carefully today to what you are hearing in
the sanctuary and through other mediums
(e.g., 'christian' TV), for your "faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of
(15 )   Not all that is presented as the 'word of God' is His gospel ... rather, it may be "another gospel"(16): Spiritual
'discernment' is required to know His Word from man's interpretation(s) and his religiosity.  We remain confidently
persuaded "that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day".
(18)   Christ said, "So be on your
guard; I have told you everything ahead of time"
(19)  and "Be on guard! Be alert ! You do not know when that time (His 2nd
will come."(20)   We were taken (plucketed) out of this world so that we could be brought into the Kingdom of
Heaven on earth ... until His appearing
(1) [Zec. 3:2] (2) [2 Pet. 3:7 / Jer. 21:12] (3) [Re. 2:] (4) [Rev. :14] (5) [1 Cor. 2:2] (6) [John 14:6] (7) [Rom. 3:5-6] (8) [Rom. 10:2-3] (9) [Col. 2:7 - TLB] (10) [2 Cor.
5:17] (11) [1 Pet. 4:12-15] (12) [Prov. 12:28] (13) [Heb. 6:19] (14) [Dan. 12:4] (15) [Rom. 10:17] (16) [Gal. 1:6-8 / 2 Cor. 11:4] (17) [2 Tim. 2:12] (18) [2 Tim. 1:12]   
(19) [Mark 13:23] (20) [Mark 13:33]  (21) 1 Thes. 4:17
amen_ministries@hotmail.com ========= aamen.org ========= P.O. Box 27683 Austin, Tx 78755
Jon D. Hannum, Ph.D.
Amen Ministries of Austin