There Is Power Within You
Updated: Aug 2, 2019
Mark 4:35-41 (ESV)
- Jesus Calms a Storm
"35 On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” 36 And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. 37 And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. 38 But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” 39 And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. 40 He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” 41 And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?"
Sometimes, the pain and the suffering of a present affliction is so strong that we forget the power and majesty of our Creator who can do anything in an instant. We forget His power and ability to change our circumstances in a moment, and because we do, we find ourselves trapped and sinking under the affliction of a pain or suffering which can so easily be resolved by His grace and power.
Jesus was very tired, but even though He was tired, He was still able to perform miracles - why? Because, as we read in Zechariah 4:6, it is "not by might nor by power, but by His Spirit.
You might be going through pain and hardships and feel like there is no other option. Maybe you went to every doctor out there and found no diagnosis for your pain, or, perhaps you do not see a way out of your current struggle. If this is you, you are in the same boat as the sailors in this story. The storm was wearing them down, and they didn't know what to do. They exhausted all the options that availed them, and knew that there was only one option left, and that was to wake the Almighty, to awaken Jesus from His sleep. In that moment, as soon as Jesus awoke, He told the wind and the storm to quiet down and it did. He is Jesus, the King of Kings, of course the storm and wind will be still. However, His response was important for us to consider - in verse 40, Jesus says, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” Sometimes the impossible seems impossible because we view the problem through our fleshly eyes. "What is impossible for man is possible for God" - Luke 18:27. The sailors saw the end of their days, a problem before them that was too big to comprehend. There was no solution in sight, nothing they were able to do would have worked. Despite their years of experience, they were unable to think of an idea. Nothing came to mind. They struggled their way to Jesus and awoke Him because they knew that He was their only hope.
The challenges we face are not there to break us, or to destroy us, but they are opportunities for us to exercise our faith, to stand up and use the power that God so graciously gave us.
The kingdom is like a key to a car, a car that can be used to transport not only individuals, but also items across a variety of terrains, and great distances. A man sits in the car, turns on the engine, and enjoys the heat that the heater provides in winter, and likewise, enjoys the cold that the air conditioner provides in summer. He sits in the car, enjoys the comfort and shelters himself from the adverse weather outside when his hut no longer meets his expectations. The man sits in something that is able to take him to great places, however, he doesn't use the car for where it can take him, but only for some of the benefits. In many ways, we are like the man - we don't use the power of God in our lives because we do not exercise our faith. We sit in the car, and we experience His grace, but we do let His power be manifested in our lives, and we don't step out in faith. The sailors were unaware of the power of God and lacked faith. They were scared.
"Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom" - 2 Corinthians 3:17. Did the sailors experience freedom in this moment? No, they didn't, because they were operating outside of the spirit of the Lord. The challenges we face are nothing when we decide to view them as Christ would view them - a challenge is simply an opportunity to exercise faith. The challenges we face are not there to break us, or to destroy us.
The wind that those sailors saw was no ordinary wind, it was howling, and it was powerful. Likewise, the waves were abnormal, huge, continuing to overwhelm not only the boat but anything in its way. The boat was not able to withstand the storm’s power and dominion, and, as a result, it became flooded. As most in that situation would, the sailors, drenched and scared decided to give up. They made their way through the water which was flooding the boat, through the strong wind, and past the helmsman who was so desperately trying to hold on to keep his place. By the time the sailors reached the stern, they were desperate and shook Jesus awake. Everything they did in their own power was meaningless, and everything they did together jointly was meaningless. In other words, everything they did by power and everything they did by might was meaningless just as we read in scripture, "not by might, nor by power, but by His Spirit." At the end of their tether, and all the hardship of trying to do everything in their own personal and combined power, they gave up, and turned to Him. Keep in mind that, in this moment, Jesus was a novice in comparison - He was amidst sailors, fishermen who knew what they were doing. Yet, despite their ability and their talent, they were confused and wondering, why were they who knew the ins and outs of being a sailor so concerned about the storm, and yet Jesus, who was not a sailor, nor a fishermen was able to rest so peacefully amidst the storm. So, the sailors, once they awakened Jesus, asked, in verse 38, "Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” Their question was one that came out of the fear of brave men, men who did all they could against the powerful forces of nature, but did God not create nature? Let us never forget that the power, true dunamis power comes only through Jesus, through the Holy Spirit. "But by my Spirit,” says the LORD Almighty.
Zechariah 4:6 is classed as one of the great scriptures in the Old Testament and I find it hard to disagree. It is truly captivating and as applicable now as it once was; a depiction of the fact that reliance on God is the only reliance, and that any assets that you might have are in no way an attribute to true success. “By His spirit," and only then is success a possibility. God's power is to be understood as a power that far surpasses any other, a power that is sufficient for the accomplishing of His will, whether that be with or without the aid of other powers, of individual power or combined might that mere men are accustomed to rely upon. It would be, I must say, improper to use this scripture without explaining the vision in which it is portrayed:
Look at the picture to the left, a depiction of the vision itself. What we see here is seven candlesticks as we read in verse 2, "a lampstand all of gold, with a bowl on the top of it, and seven lamps on it." Each of these candlesticks are supplied with oil which comes from the olive trees on the side, first into the centre golden bowl, then outpoured to each individual candlestick. Without any help of any man, or the help of any team of men, oil is poured in. In the same way, the temple which Zerubbabel must build is not to be built "by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts." The temple is to be built through the Spirit of God, a strength that will enable them to do great works.
With scriptures like this, a lot of times, they are misinterpreted, misunderstood and misquoted leading to confusion amongst His people. Yet, when we think about it, this scripture is a beautiful depiction and actually very clear in its interpretation. Misinterpretation takes place when we focus our attention in every detail within it - sometimes it is best to simply look at the main scope, rather than every particular. The design is plainly declared in words therein, nothing of surprise: The candlesticks are the Church of God, and the oil from the gold bowl is the Holy Spirit; the gold bowl, the Gospel; and the olive trees, which graciously pour out their sacred stores of golden oil, are the outpouring of the Holy Spirit from the anointed ones, in other words, the sons of oil. The sons of oil comes from the Hebrew word for ones, bane (בְנֵֽי־ - ḇə·nê) meaning son, and the Hebrew word for anointed, yitshar (הַיִּצְהָ֑ר - hay·yiṣ·hār) meaning fresh oil which we read about in Zechariah 4:14 – “So he said, “These are the two anointed ones, who stand beside the Lord of the whole earth.” Just like Joshua, the high priest; and Zerubbabel, the governor “stand by the Lord of the whole earth,” so you and I, as anointed ones, make the same choice to stand by Him. The Holy Spirit was freely given to you and me, as the sons of God, for us to be the sons of oil, the anointed ones. To be a son of oil is to be a son that is of service to the church which is the people of Christ in the world. This Hebrew word for oil, yitshar, is also found in Jeremiah 31:12, where we read, "their life shall be like a watered garden, and they shall languish no more." We see this same image here, in Zechariah 4 - even if were mistaken by the precise meaning of it, what is clear is that the candlesticks, which resemble the church, are kept alight, not by the power of a man or the might of many, but by the spirit of God, the oil which is conveyed from God through every one of us as He intends to use us according to His divine appointment. We are His appointed instruments, and through us, His Spirit flows to His people, His church. Some read these scriptures too precisely, taking it to mean two specific people, and only those two, however, the main thing conveyed here is the abundance of Christ, the impossibility of God's grace ever failing to preserve His church - He possesses all abundance and it never diminishes.
The oil continues to flow, to replenish us, to ensure that the Church is preserved, safe and continually growing to its highest perfection in Him.
Looking at the earlier reference to the enablement of the Spirit, in Zechariah 4:6, what we see is empowerment of the sons of oil - "So he answered and said to me: “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts." Zechariah 4 does not exist to speak only of Zerubbabel and Joshua, and their leadership as they restore prosperity to the land, which we read in Zechariah 3:10 - "In that day,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘Everyone will invite his neighbor under his vine and under his fig tree;" it serves to showcase to every one of us the power of the Lord, His ability to do the impossible, and bring things to completion through His servants, which in this case was Zerubbabel and Joshua. The supernatural enablement is what we read about in 2 Corinthians 12:9 - “'My grace is sufficient for you [My lovingkindness and My mercy are more than enough—always available—regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected [and is completed and shows itself most effectively] in [your] weakness.' Therefore, I will all the more gladly boast in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ [may completely enfold me and] may dwell in me." Any project ordained by God in which He has called His people, whether that be to rebuild the temple, or as Peter was called, to build the church in Matthew 16:18, it will be completed successfully as long as things are done, "‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts."
“My grace is sufficient for you; for my power is being perfected in your weakness" is an incredible depiction of something very important for us to understand about living in the miraculous. You see, without grace, there is no power; the two work interchangeably. It is by God's grace that He empowers us, and; it is only when we delight in our weakness, in other words, we make room for His power rather than our own, that His power is perfected, or at its full manifestation in our lives. To put it plainly, we allow things to be done "not by might, nor by power," but by His spirit. If you want the manifestation of His power in your life, then you have to delight in your weaknesses - to let go of your solutions, thinking, and individual power. In addition, stop depending on your friends and the might (combined strength) of those around you, just depend on God - let God: Let go, let God. Interestingly, the Hebrew word for power in Zechariah 4:6 is koach (כֹּחַ) defined as a small reptile, meaning little strength - the strength of a human or an animal. To the contrary, the Greek word for power in 2 Corinthians 12:9 is dunamis (δύναμις, εως, ἡ) defined as miraculous power, meaning God's strength. I don't know about you, but I would rather depend on power through God's ability than power through my own ability. All we have to do is "delight in our weaknesses" as we read in the scripture that follows, in verse 10 - "Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong." This may not make any sense in the world we live in, but it makes complete sense in God's world – it’s a choice as to which world we want to live in: The kingdom or the world. In Ephesians 3:16, the word (AMP) says, "May He grant you out of the riches of His glory, to be strengthened and spiritually energized with power through His Spirit in your inner self." The One who is in us, let me tell you, "is greater than the one who is in the world" - 1 John 4:4. The Holy Spirit inside of you is almighty and powerful. Don't depend on your own individual power, but depend greatly on the measure of His fullness; His infinite greatness. "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline " - 2 Timothy 1:7. The word fear in this scripture comes from the Greek word, deilia (δειλία, ας, ἡ) which is used only once in the entire bible and it means, to be a coward, to act in a way that is cowardly and/or to have cold feet. Cold feet toward what? Basically, anything that pertains to the gospel; to be deterred from the work of the ministry, the preaching of the Gospel, or the healing of the sick. This is a spirit that is not of God, and we know this because it is not the spirit that God gave us, for He "gave us a spirit of power." Here, God calls every single one of us to be His people, a people that is not fearful, but instead, fearless; not to be cowards, but, through the goodness of Himself within us, a people that focuses on Him rather than our own sinful nature, operating out of His power rather than our own reptile strength.
We are "energized with power through His Spirit in our inner man," - Ephesians 3:16. The word inner in the Greek is esó ( ἔσω ) which means within or inside of. This word is also used in 2 Corinthians 4:16 - "Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day." We have a treasure within us - verse 7, "But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us." There is a treasure within every single one of us, and that treasure is renewed and never perishes. To the contrary, our minds, our thoughts, our bodies, our material possessions, in other words, our outward man - that perishes. Yet, this is what we focus on - we focus on the things that perish, not the things that are eternal. We depend on our own individual ability, rather than the ever-renewing power and majesty of Jesus within us. Often, we try and change our outward man, to become better and to influence more, or to get that dream job we have always wanted, so that we can buy that dream car we always wanted. What our outward man wants is very different to what our inner man wants. We change our conduct, our speech, our appearance and more, so that we stand out in the eyes of others. Why? Because that is what others see with their outward man. Maybe we have some sin we try to overcome, or some habit that we try to stop, all with our own individual power. But unfortunately, it just won't cut it, no matter how hard you try. The inner man are the motives, the conscience, and our affections: Our motives must be pure; our conscience, active and rooted in Christ; our affections, our likes and dislikes, must match the likes and dislikes of Christ, based on His word and the Gospel. To top it all, there is Him, the Holy Spirit within us, in our inner man. All the rest does not matter, that is the outward man: the things we enjoy, we say, we do, we suffer. These things are not eternal and are not where the power lies; the inner man is eternal, and where the power can be found. The outward man is the outward experiences and circumstances which is despicable. Often, we might find ourselves in a distressed condition whether that be a hunger or a thirst, or a feeling of nakedness and therefore, a want of a common necessity. In addition, our bodies are unable to withstand continuous use, and we become fatigued and perhaps even sorrowful. These earthly tabernacles of ours are wavering, but our inner tabernacles are onward and upward, always. Our inner man is often hopelessly buried away under the persona and power of our outward man.
That inner man is crying out for you, to be better. The inner man is a better you, a potential perfection in Christ. There is an ideal placed in the inner man, in every one of us, which we ought to become.
Stephen is a great example of someone who operated out of grace and power - he was, as we read in Acts 6:8 (AMP), "full of grace (divine blessing, favor) and power, doing great wonders and signs (attesting miracles) among the people," so too, you and I can do the same, but we must ensure that we do not operate out of a spirit of fear which God did not intend for us to use, but a spirit of power (dunamis) which He so freely gave us. My dear friends, a gift is not meant to be thrown away, it is meant to be used.
Applying the word is key, and there are two audiences that will be reading this now. The first of which are those who have not received the Holy Spirit; to you, I say, believe in and seek Him. The second are those who have received the Holy Spirit; to you, I say, stir it up within you. First, let me talk about the former, those who have not received the Holy Spirit. In Ephesians 1:13, Paul explained in a concise way the moment when the Holy Spirit indwells in us, when "in Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise." In Romans 8:9, its even clearer - "now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His." In the Old Testament, God chose specific people to be filled with the Spirit, to use them as a tool to do great wonders; today, that same tool is indwelling within us to also do great wonders. Today the Spirit is indwelling, and in the past, the Spirit filled only key people for certain wonders and purposes. How generous is God that despite our sinful nature, He gives us His Spirit, to do great things here on earth, "not by might, nor by power" but by His Spirit. Today, all we have to do to receive the Holy Spirit is accept Jesus as our Lord and Saviour - in John 3:5, Jesus says, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." I might just quickly, before describing this further, explain what Jesus meant when He said "born of water." There are people who believe that baptism is required for salvation resembled by the "born of water" statement, but this is not true. Look at Ephesians 2:8-9, for example, which states, "For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast." It is not the act of immersion in water, something that we do which is our salvation, but by God's grace that we are saved - it is not by works, but by His grace. All we have to do is make a heart decision and then declare it, as we read in Romans 10:9 - "if you declare with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." What Jesus was saying when He said "born of water" was not that one must be baptised - the reality is, that if He wanted to say this, He would have, and we would find that meaning in the Greek - He would have used the word, baptisei (βαπτίσει) used in other scriptures referring to baptism. Instead, what we find is the word hudór (ὕδωρ, ὕδατος, τό) which literally means water or waters. To further this, if this is what Jesus meant, that baptism is required for salvation, then He contradicted other scriptures such as John 3:16 and 36, Ephesians 2:8-9, and Titus 3:5, and we all know that this is not what Jesus will do. Misinterpretation of scripture takes place when the context of the scripture is disregarded. For example; if we look at the context in John 3:5, it was Jesus speaking to Nicodemus, and at this point, Christian baptism was not yet in effect. Also, let’s think back to the thief on the cross - he did not need to be baptised to be saved. Both the thief and Nicodemus were under the Old Covenant, and here is my final point - why would Jesus tell Nicodemus he needed to be baptised, but not the thief? Scriptures applies equally to all, my dear friends. So, let’s look at the phrase, "born of water," and instead of looking at the meaning of water, let’s think of what water can do? It can cleanse, clean and remove dirt and grime. This is what Jesus intended. To be "born of water" is to be "born again." Jesus was referring to spiritual cleansing or renewal, as we read in Psalm 51:2, "Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin;" Ezekiel 36:25, "I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols;" 1 Corinthians 6:11, "But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God," and; Hebrews 10:22, "let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water." Jesus was referring to the fruit of water, speaking of spiritual cleansing brought by the Holy Spirit, as we read in Titus 3:5, "He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit." Furthermore, in Peter 3:20-21, Peter makes it clear that the act of baptism, as an outward expression of you deciding to believe in Jesus, as a ritual, is not what saves you, but the fact that you are indeed set free through Jesus - "who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ." If we think about Noah, both him and his family were not saved by the water itself but by the providence of the water, by God. The water did not save them – it was only an instrument through the good providence of God which led to them being saved. It was the ark that kept them above the providence of water that saved them, not the water. In the same way, the water of baptism does not save man; but rather Jesus, our ark who saves us. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is everything, and when we give our lives to Him, He gives us His Holy Spirit, to renew us daily. Baptism is simply an outward expression of what Christ has done, in Titus 3:5 - "He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit." Okay so, to conclude, to those who have not received the Holy Spirit; to you, I say, believe in Him, seek Him.
Second, let me talk to the latter, those who have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Saviour and received the Holy Spirit. For you, my dear friends, it’s about a habitual dedication. When cooking, an important element of the end result is the stirring of essential ingredients. A good thing about our walk with Jesus is that He has already given us the essential ingredients - the Holy Spirit inside of you has given you gifts. It’s time to stir up that gift/gifts that God gave you. This was a direction in the Bible that was given to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:6 - "Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands." A gift is meant to be used. Other translations of this same verse says, "kindle up the flame." This phrase in the Greek is anazópureó (ἀναζωπυρέω), and is only used once in the Bible - it means to stir up the fire, fan the flame, or even to revive, rekindle, or resuscitate. The Holy Spirit has given you many graces and gifts, and these are a potential fire within you, but you need to kindle the flame, the gifts that God has given you. I don't know about you, but I have met a lot of Christians who do not live according to the Holy Spirit, or live out a practical life of dunamis power, and, all this means is that the remains of the fire are present and has not been kindled. The gifts are there but are not used. Stirring could mean many things, but to me, the meaning is a number of acts - prayer, reading of the word, meditation on the word, the duty of giving and being generous to the flock of Christ, and lastly, enduring troubles and sufferings for Christs sake. The gifts that God has placed inside of you are a lot like a puzzle: He has given me the picture of my potential, but it is "through the laying on of my hands" that I kindle the fire, pack together the pieces and make my calling a reality. It is through your actions that you kindle the fire. One thing I would mention here, which is important to remember is that a fire cannot be rekindled if the fire cannot be accessed or seen. What I mean is that your environment will heavily impact your ability to kindle the fire. If you surround yourself with people that stop you from kindling the fire, it is like allowing those around you to place a fire blanket over it, stopping the oxygen from being present, and doing the opposite of fanning the flaming. Fire needs oxygen! If God said to you that you are to be a prophet to all the nations, and the Church you attend doesn't enable you to kindle that flame, leave. Obviously pray about it and seek God first. It may be that He wants you there for a reason, but from what I have seen, this is rarely the case - generally this is only the case when there is something else God wants you to learn in that environment. A gift that is inactive is a gift that has been left to idle. When you hear a leader say, "pack the chairs for the next 4 years, and then we will talk about your gift," run away, but to those leaders who say, "serve with me as we pack the chairs on Sunday, and lets meet weekly to build you up to who God has called you to be," to these, say "thank-you" for they are the leaders who obey the word and, as we read in Ephesians 4:12, "equip His people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up." The stirring up of the gift of God in the life of Timothy resolves around the actions that pertain to the duty, for example, actions such as prayer, meditation on the word of God, or, the duty itself which is to feed and care for the flock, the sheep which is the Church, and to endure tribulation as a soldier of Jesus, our Saviour. The agency of man is sometimes set aside, but here we see it as a part of the picture. You may have a rich abundance of gifts that the Holy Spirit has given to you, but however rich they may be, its growth is dependent on nourishment you provide, its flame is dependent on the oxygen you give it - the gift within you needs to be cultivated, not neglected.
All Christians have been given the Holy Spirit - "do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?" - 1 Corinthians 3:16. He is inside of you, and He is not going anywhere. He is in the inner holy of holies, inside of your being - He lives there. Every time you hear a small voice speaking within you, it is the Holy Spirit pleading with you, to do what is right, "for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you" - Matthew 10:20. True sons of God are those who choose to listen to the voice, not neglect it, "for all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God" - Romans 8:14. Those who are leaders, not followers, and willing to go through tribulations and sufferings, to share the gospel, these are like Paul who, in Acts 20:22 said, "and now, behold, bound by the Spirit, I am on my way to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there." Does it matter what challenges lie before us, when we are bound by the Spirit? No, because we know the why (His will) behind the what (the challenges). Just as Paul was someone that not only knew that the Holy Spirit was inside of him, but was so compelled by the love of God that he decided to be bound by the Spirit, not caring about his life, but knowing that God cared and knew what was best, so too, we must be compelled. Paul was so powerfully persuaded to undertake a journey, not led by himself, but by God, to such a degree that he was bound. Let us learn, therefore, not to allow fire blankets to be placed over the fire within us, not to block aside or neglect the voice of God, but to kindle the fire, to listen to His voice that we might discern and have wisdom. Let us obediently give our bodies and minds to Him in such a way that we are governed by Him, ruled by Him, like Paul said, "bound by the Spirit." You and I are free to do as we please, but I would rather be "free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God" - 1 Peter 2:16. Spreading the gospel is all about breaking people free of sin and oppression, but what is that freedom used for? Well, first of all, let’s ensure that we do not use it "as a cloak for vice" meaning that, even though we have the right, as children of God, to the enjoyments of and indulgences in the world, lets choose not to give ourselves up to the sensual indulgences of the world, giving up on the morality and fear of God, and sink into vices; but instead, let’s choose to use our freedom to be slaves to God, "bondservants of God:" To be bound by the liberty, to serve God and not indulge in the pleasures of the world, to be faithful to the Holy Spirit within us, and be obedient to His word. Let’s use our liberty to be bound to serve God, to obey, and therefore, not to indulge and dishonor.
You and I have been sealed for a purpose. We have been sealed, for He has, as we read in 2 Corinthians 1:22, "sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee." There are two things to denote here: First, you are property of God. The word seal in Greek is sphragizó ( σφραγίζω ) which means to stamp or to attest ownership, essentially validating what is for what is possible, in essence, giving you approval as an heir by giving you His Spirit. This is so powerful, and I don't believe that many are aware of how powerful this is. You have been marked as a distinguished asset in the Kingdom. Think of this word, seal, as a logo or trademark of a company, essentially sealing specific goods as the property of the company; or a seal on a currency note, sealing the note as property of the government. Likewise, you and I have been sealed as the property of God by the seal of the Spirit. Second, the best is yet to come as the Holy Spirit is an advance on the full payment. The word guarantee in Hebrew is arrabón (αρραβων) which means earnest-money; a part of the payment; an instalment; deposit meant as a security, a guarantee of greater things to come - the full purchase price. The Spirit is a down payment given to you and me before we receive our heavenly inheritance. Not only is eternal life a promise made to you and me, but it is guaranteed through the seal of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit dwells inside of you, every day witnessing to you who you are in Christ, a son; assuring you of your involvement in heavenly glory; a display of the love of God, as a father to you, the son.
So far, I have mentioned a lot about our anointing as His people, how He gave us the Holy Spirit as an inheritance, and the dunamis power within us. But, why does this matter? It matters because we shall be witnesses "to the end of the earth" - Acts 1:8. "You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you" because you are to "be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth." Firstly, I want to make it clear that you do not become powerful because the Holy Spirit is inside of you, no, the Holy Spirit is the power and where the Holy Spirit lives, yes, inside of you, there is power because He is all powerful. Do not seek the power, seek the Holy Spirit because He is the power that you need. It is a matter of spiritual power, none other than the power of the Holy Ghost. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me," Philippians 4:13 - this is the power, a power that strengthens through someone, not a power that is inside of us, but a power that is made available to us through someone that is inside of us. That someone is the Holy Spirit. We have been strengthened by Him to preach, to teach and to equip, to work miracles, to have courage amidst challenges and to spread the Gospel. What does it mean to be witnesses? To be a witness is to be a representative and the only way one can be a representative is to do and be the same as the one which you represent. You and I are called to be a witness of who Christ is, and the only way we can do this is to do what Christ does. We are to be a witness of the person of Jesus, His sonship, ministry, miracles, suffering, death and resurrection. We are to testify of Christ, His miraculous power, His love and His forgiveness.
My dear friends, there is POWER within you.
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