The Refiner’s Fire


An important difference for us to understand, just how God separates soul from Spirit in us…

I have refined you, but not like silver. I have tested you in the furnace of suffering. (Isaiah 48:10 GW)

The furnace of affliction is for those who by faith are in Christ. What happens in the furnace of affliction? What is it that is dealt with in the fire? Is it you, and is it I, that are refined in the fire? Are you refined in the fire? Am I refined in the furnace of affliction? I say, No! emphatically NO!! If we say, “Yes!” well, let us look at the furnace of affliction, the fire with the metal in the crucible. What are you doing with that metal? Well, you say, you heat the fire intensely and all the uncleanness, the corruption, comes to the surface; this is skimmed off, and when that process has been carried through to its end, there is left pure gold! Then if you say that is you or that is me you will have to abandon your doctrine of total depravity, and you will have to come back to the place where you say there is good in us, after all! You will have to say there is good and bad in us, and the furnace of afflict ion is to get the badness out of us and leave the goodness! Is that true doctrine? No!

The furnace of affliction is not for the removal of the bad out of us so as to leave the good that is in us, and secure it! Then what is its purpose? Is it to refine Christ in us? We need not discuss that! Christ needs no refining! What is it for? It is to divide between what is us in fallen nature, and what is Christ, and to get rid of the one in order to give full place to the other! The furnace of affliction is the application of the Cross to the getting rid of you and me, in order to leave the whole place for Christ. It is the measure of Christ that God is after, not to cut in between the good and bad in us, but to cut in between what is Christ, and what is ourselves. That is what the Lord is doing. He is after increasing Christ, and in order to do that He has to displace self, the old creation. It is all the measure of Christ in this realm. The realm of God is not going to be refined self, reformed self, or any kind of patching up of self. It is going to be none of self, and all of Christ.

T. Austin-Sparks

8 comments on “The Refiner’s Fire

  1. Mia says:

    Dear Michael

    Amen, Amen, Amen and another Amen. Oh, dear bro, He does that indeed. Madame Jean Guyon, a 16 century aristocrat who was imprisoned in the Bastille for her faith, used to call it the sweetness of suffering.

    When I read her words, I couldn’t understand, but now that I have been and still are going through the refiner’s fire of suffering every day, I know precicely what she was talking about.

    The worse the excruciating pain, weakness and exhaustion, the deeper my spirit withdraws within our Pappa’s Loving Embrace. There are times when I can actually feel His arms holding me.

    Do I want to be healed! No ways!! I used to be such a religious performer before I fell ill, why would I go want to go back to that empty cursed life.

    In fact, He told me that my illness is for my own good, for that ingrained habit of trying to earn love and acceptance runs deep and it is best to not be able to give in to that temptation again.

    Michael, it is hard to explain, but nevertheless true, but one can live so deep in our sweet Lord, that you feel totally removed from the pain and suffering even while you experience it all to the deepest degree.

    It reminds me of Daniel’s friends who was standing in the furnace together with our Lord Jesus and all what mattered was that our Lord was there with them EVEN IF they were not saved. They refused to believe otherwise, but this truth.

    Thank you, this is sooo true. If people truly knew this, they would stop nagging our Lord to heal them.




    • Mia, like the breaking of the alabaster box, until that happens the Lord is not blessed and the whole house will not be filled with the sweet smell of perfume. Our breaking lets Christ out. Paul wrote, “Death works in me that life might abound to others.” Father is looking for those who will unselfishly embrace the cross of Christ as theirs. “He who finds his life will lose it, but he who loses his life for my sake will find it.”

      Love you, my sister,


  2. brywieb says:

    Brother Austin-Sparks was/is such a blessing!


  3. Jessika says:

    I don’t write a great deal of remarks, but i did some searching and wound up here The Refiners
    Fire A Wilderness Voice. And I actually do
    have a few questions for you if you usually do not mind.
    Could it be only me or does it give the impression like
    some of these comments appear as if they are written by brain dead people?
    😛 And, if you are writing at additional social sites,
    I would like to follow everything fresh you have to post.
    Could you list of all of your communal pages like your
    Facebook page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?


    • Michael says:

      Jessika, I am not sure what you base your assessment on that some of the comments on this blog are from “brain dead” people, but I find that to be a fairly harsh statement on your part. People write from where they are at and I find that most of my commenters are seeking to grow in Christ and NOT remain where they are at… and THIS is all that God requires of us… NOT a self-contended assessment of how great we are and how far we have come.
      As for me writing and posting on social media, I keep that to a minimum. But my Facebook account is: michaelclark110
      Thanks for writing.


  4. jacqui says:

    It reminds me Michael when Jesus speaks that He cannot put new wine into old wine skins …..I’ve always been fascinated by this scripture. ….. and to get rid of the one in order to give full place to the other! Gosh this verse spoke to me but at a loss as always ….. oh the mystery of Christ always. ….. jacqui x

    Liked by 1 person

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