Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Power of God

"Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;" (Colossians 1:11)
When we speak of the power of God, we may not immediately think of it going along with patience and longsuffering. If man had written this verse, he probably would have said something like "according to his glorious power, unto the winning of many souls", or "unto being prosperous", or "unto the performing of miracles", or "unto great and mighty things." But the Holy Ghost decided that His power would be made known best, with our suffering, patience, hardships, trials, etc..
The Lord told Paul, "...my strength is made perfect in your weakness." (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Then Paul said, "Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." (2Cor. 12:9-10)
I read a statement the other day that said, "Whenever you're down to nothing, then God is up to something." I like that.
Indeed, God has to get us very low and weak sometimes, and take away our comforts and safety nets, in order to make us depend on Him alone. He has to keep us humble, to continue showing His power in us.
"...God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God." (James 4:6-7)
When most people speak of the power of God, they tend to point to certain things we can see, in order to show evidence of the Holy Ghost's working in someone's life.
I believe the Holy Ghost fulfills many duties in this age. He does many things for us and through us concerning the power of God. And it doesn't always have to do with gaining, prospering or growing, whether your talking about physical things or spiritual.
Many people have entirely the wrong idea about the Holy Ghost, and His power and working, and what it really means. I hear some say, "We had such a good church service, the preacher didn't even get to preach, the Holy Ghost sure was there, people shouted, we sang and sang." I've heard others say that their large attendance or big offerings were evidence of the Holy Ghost's blessing. Still others testify of, healings, miracles, speaking in tongues, visions, and other such wild things, as being the evidence of God's power being among them. I'm not saying theses things can't be a proof of the Holy Ghost's working, in fact many of them are. I'm just saying, these things aren't always set in stone as being from the Holy Ghost. The Devil's crowd can perform miracles. Cults grow large in number and money. Many other groups have a good time and enjoy themselves, without even knowing the Holy Spirit of God.
There are many things that relate to the power of God, the Holy Ghost, which one might not normally consider. Such as being able to suffer, while still having joy, as we saw in Colossians 1:11. What about the fruit of the Spirit, in Galatians 5:22-23? "...love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance:" These are not "fruit of salvation", they are "fruit of the Spirit". Yes, we receive the Holy Spirit when we're saved, but if you're not yielding yourself daily to His will, you won't be showing forth these fruit proofs.
There are many things in scripture, that are always associated with the Holy Ghost. In Ephesians 1:15-21 we read of a few of them: "wisdom, revelation, understanding, enlightenment, knowledge, hope." If you see these things in a Christian's life, it's evidence of the Holy Ghost. Ephesians 3:13-21 gives some more things: "might, faith, love, rooted and grounded, comprehension, the fulness of God." Colossians 1:9-14 lists some more: "knowledge of his will, spiritual understanding, worthy walking, being pleasing to God, increasing in knowledge OF GOD (not of greek, of doctrines, etc..),deliverance from the power of darkness.
We call this the "Grace Age", the "Church Age", and rightfully so. I believe we could just as correctly call this the "Holy Spirit Age". The Holy Ghost gave us the Word of God, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, by inspiring men to write it. The Holy Ghost led us to saving faith in Jesus Christ. He continues revealing Christ in our hearts. He does many other wonderful things in our lives, that we ought to be aware of.
When Jesus Christ is exalted and praised above all other things (like man, music, programs, etc..), then that's evidence to the Holy Ghost. When we show true faith and confidence in God and His Word, that's evidence of the Holy Ghost. When we live live in a manner that's pleasing to God, then that's evidence of the Holy Ghost. When we show forth the light of Jesus in our lives, the Holy Ghost is present. The Holy Ghost always points people to Jesus, whether they're lost or saved. Those who make constant mention of the Holy Ghost, most likely don't have Him. He never draws attention to Himself, but always points to Christ.
"But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:" (John 15:26)
"...for he shall not speak of himself..." "He shall glorify me..." (John 16:13-15)
(taken from Bro. Josh's Bible Thoughts)

5 comments:

Carol said...

A resounding Amen!!!!! Everything you said was true and correct!! I have nothing to add really because you were very thorough! But I'm gonna try. :)

I too have heard people say some of the things you mentioned - they didn't have time to get to read the Bible because they were too busy praising. (that raises a red flag) And I know of a person in particular who speaks of nothing but the Holy Spirit while giving Jesus a secondary role, subservient to the Holy Spirit. If the Holy Spirit "manifests" Himself, it's most likely not going to be outward, but INWARD. I don't fall for the dazzling light show because like you said, Satan can do these things too.

Excellent post!

PamelaK said...

Great post, Reporters! Thank you!

The Good Reporters said...

Sis. Carol,
You're right. Thanks again for taking the time to leave a comment.

The Good Reporters said...

PamelaK,
Glad to hear the post was a blessing. Thanks for your comment.

Julie's Jewels said...

Y'all are putting up some very good posts!! Its good to see y'all are obeying the Lord with your posts. They are very informative!! Y'all are such a blessing!!