TALK ABOUT POWER!
I pray also that the eyes if your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints and His incomparably great power for us who believe (Eph. 1: 18-19).
Once again we must remember the background of these Ephesian believers. Many of them had come out of witchcraft. After their conversion, they had made a huge bonfire of their witchcraft paraphernalia in the city. Their lives had been invaded by the power of God, the God of pure love. From then on, they could no longer have a part of anything that misused other people.
Why do people dabble in witchcraft? Why do some even sell their souls to the devil? He promises them power! But the only power the devil can give is power to control and power to destroy. It is evil power because it affects the lives of other for the worse. The next problem with demonic power is that it diminishes the person who uses it. Every time one person brings harm to another, he is diminished and dehumanised.
These ex witches and wizards burned their past when they burned the tools of their sorcery, to tell the world and the devil that they had finished with that life. They were now under a new Master, one who also had power, a different kind of power of which they had never dreamed. Perhaps at that point of their new-found faith, they did not know the magnitude of the power that resided in them.
What did they need? Enlightenment. Understanding. Knowledge. Up this this point in their lives, they had been fed and had believed lies. Since the early history of man, a false religion had grown up around Nimrod, great grandson of Noah, and his evil wife Semiramis and her illegitimate son, Tammuz. Through a series of fabricated stories that Semiramis spawned, she had deified Nimrod as the sun-god, Baal, and she became the moon-goddess, known as Ashtaroth, or Astarte (Diana), or by other names in many parts of the ancient world.
Behind these false stories, the father of lies was garnering worship for himself under a variety a nom de plumes, which was exactly what he craved, even if he had to do it by deceit. Paul came to Ephesus with a blistering message of the truth. Satan, alias Caesar, alias Baal or any other name behind which he hid, was not Lord. Jesus was Lord and He proved it by His resurrection. Satan, through the evil religious leaders in Israel, tried to destroy Him but, instead, his plan backfired and Jesus destroyed him.
Those who were held captive to the devil and were enslaved to live in wickedness, were now free to escape the devil’s clutches. Jesus had rescued them from their hell, forgiven their sin, power-washed them clean by His blood and relocated them to the kingdom of God where they had always belonged. Satan was the squatter, the hijacker and the felon who had usurped God’s position on His earth. Paul said, “If you want to know real power, that’s power.”
Many of us have seen effects of the raw power of nature. Fire, wind, water, earthquakes, rip through a region and leave utter devastation in their wake. But have you even noticed the power of a seed. I have seen buildings split open by the force of a growing seed. That’s power! Power does not only destroy. God’s power is able to restore, renew and recreate. He can heal broken hearts, broken people, and broken relationships. He can give people whom the devil has destroyed, a fresh start. Jesus said that it’s like being “born again”.
Paul wanted these people, who had only known destruction in their lives, to experience that kind of power. He prayed that they would have their spiritual eyes opened to the truth of what had happened to them. God had removed the cloud of doom that hung over them, and the deep-seated fear of death which was the legacy of those who gave allegiance to the devil. He had replaced it with hope, the unseen end product of what He had done for them through Jesus.
Their faith in Jesus had cancelled fear. They were safe in God’s kingdom – under His authority and protection from the one who had now become their arch-enemy. Jesus had bought them back from slavery. They were legitimately His. They now belonged to God, body, soul and spirit, and He had the power to keep them from wandering back into enemy territory as long as they kept their eyes on Him.
But the power of God didn’t end there. He had put a power source in them that had created the universe. Take that, devil! Satan is not a creator; he can only counterfeit what God has created. Even the people who worship him do not belong to him. He stole them and put his mark on them, the mark of rebellion in their hearts. God put His plan right back on track by rescuing the ones the devil had kidnapped, cleaned out all the evidences of his ownership and replaced them with His Spirit, His guarantee of ownership.
What power is there in the universe greater than the power of the Holy Spirit? His power is recreating, regenerating, restoring, and renewing power. “That’s the power of God I want you to know,” said Paul. God alone can give you understanding and experience of His power that is able to set aspects of your life right that went horribly wrong when Adam rebelled against God – your relationship with God, and your relationship with people. When these two areas of your life are back on track, everything in your life will come back into focus.
God’s power does something amazing inside of you. He enables you to take control of yourself. That’s it! When you have your own heart in check, through the power of the Holy Spirit in you, your world will turn right side up. It’s part of the fruit of the Spirit and it’s called “self-control”!
Scripture is taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Have you read my first book, Learning to be a Son – The Way to the Father’s Heart (Copyright © 2015, Partridge Publishing)? You’ll love it!
ISBN: Softcover – 978-1-4828-0512-3, eBook 978-4828-0511-6
My second book, Learning to be a Disciple – The Way of the Master (Copyright © 2015, Partridge Publishing), a companion volume to Learning to be a Son – The Way to the Father’s Heart, has been released in paperback and digital format on www.amazon.com.
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