Starting a Fire With Water

Some of you are probably familiar with an Old Testament story about a prophet who used water to start a fire.

His name was Elijah. He was trying to convince the Israelites to stop worshipping idols and turn back to God.

He was going up against hundreds of false prophets who worshipped Baal, plus King Ahab. But Elijah had a far more powerful ally. He challenged the false prophets to call on their god to bring down fire from heaven to burn up a sacrifice on an altar.

They tried all day but failed. Before calling upon God to bring down fire, Elijah repeatedly soaked the sacrifice and the altar in water. Just to show it wouldn’t be a fluke when it happened.

Sure enough, God sent fire from heaven to consume Elijah’s sacrifice and the altar. The Israelites responded by choosing to worship God rather than Baal.

Fire is essential for survival

Now, you will probably never offer a sacrifice on an altar. But knowing how to start a fire with water might come in handy in a survival situation some day.

As we know, water is the single most important thing to our survival. We can stay alive without food for several weeks if we absolutely have to.

And we might be able to survive without shelter for a while if weather conditions permit. But we won’t last long without water.

Another element we may not be able to live long without is fire. We might need it to stay warm in the outdoors, and we will definitely need it to cook food. Eating raw meat will expose you to problems far worse than hunger.

No fire starter? No problem!

Boiling water to disinfect it could also be essential to your survival if you don’t have a portable water purifier.

Fire can be used to light your way in the darkness and keep dangerous animals at bay. It could also be used to signal for help if you are lost or stranded in the wilderness.

Hopefully, fire starters are included in your bug-out bag and in an emergency kit you keep in your vehicle.

But a time may come when those fire starters are unavailable. That’s when the knowledge of how to start a fire with water could prove to be very useful.

Baggie or bottle will do the trick

If you have water and a plastic baggie or plastic water bottle, you can start a fire on a sunny day.

Fill the baggie with water and twist it into a shape that is as sphere-like as possible. With direct sunlight and the baggie serving as a lens, you can create fire. Place your dry tinder such as dark paper under the baggie.

You can do the same type of thing with a clear plastic water bottle. The convex edge of the water bottle (near the opening) can act as a magnifying glass, setting fire to your paper under it.

The darker the paper, the better, as it will absorb heat better. In fact, white paper probably won’t work.

If all you have is white paper, rub dirt on it to darken it. As soon as the first sheet of paper starts to burn, add another piece to increase the size of your fire.

Practice makes perfect

Another item you could use if you don’t have a baggie or a bottle is a light bulb. Chisel out the bottom so you can see inside it. Pour hot water into it and shake it well.

Rinse it several times until the water inside is crystal clear. Now fill the bulb with water and cap it with a balloon. It’s now a makeshift magnifying glass.

Like all survival “tricks,” the more you practice it, the better you will be at doing it. And the faster you’ll be able to start a fire.

So, get creative and get good at this in your backyard before you really need it in a survival situation.


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