Monday, April 3, 2006

The Power That Works in You

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or imagine, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)
The Greek word for “power” is dunamis, the ability to get things done. Notice that God is not only able to do superabundantly above all we can ask or imagine according to His own power, but more precisely, according to the power that works in us. It is His power, of course, but it is present in us to work in this wonderful way.

How can that be?

Before He ascended to heaven, Jesus promised the disciples, “You shall receive power [dunamis] when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

By the dunamis of the Holy Spirit at work in them, the disciples would be witnesses concerning the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. A witness is one who brings evidence or produces proof. By this power, the disciples not only preached boldly in the name of Jesus, but in His name they performed signs, wonders and miracles, just as Jesus had done.

Preaching to Cornelius, the apostle Peter spoke of this same power at work in Jesus:
God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power [dunamis], who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. (Acts 10:38)
Although He is the eternal Son of God, the Second Person of the Trinity, that is not how Jesus performed His miracles of healing and exorcism. Rather, it was by the power of the Holy Spirit at work in Him—that same power He promised would come on His disciples. By that power, God is able to do much more than we can ask or even imagine.

Remember the woman with the issue of blood who came up behind Jesus, saying to herself, “If I can just touch the hem of His garment, I will be healed.” She did, and she was. She felt healing power flow into her body (see Matthew 9:20-22).

Jesus was not even aware of her until she received healing power from Him. He turned around and said, “Who touched me?” Peter answered, “Lord, there’s a lot of people pressing in all around — and You want to know who touched You?” Jesus said, “Yes, I know somebody touched me, because I felt dunamis flow out of me” (see Luke 8:43-48).

Jesus had not asked the Father for this woman’s healing, nor did He think about her being healed. He did not even know she was there — until she touched Him in faith. It was her faith that released the healing power which was resident in Jesus.

Consider the extent of this great power, which we receive by faith. In Ephesians 1, Paul prayed that we would know
What is the exceeding greatness of His power [dunamis] toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is name, no only in this age but also in that which is to come. (Ephesians 1:19-21)
If you know the Lord Jesus Christ, the same power that was at work in Him is also at work in you. By that power, God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all you can ask or imagine — and it is released by faith. That is the way it is supposed to be from now on. Glory be to the Father, to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. Amen.