Lecture Hall Archives
THE POWER WITHIN
Ephesians 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.”
The difference between religion and Christianity, is that religion fills the head with knowledge, while true Christianity fills the believer’s heart with power from God.
Remember how Jesus told His disciples after they had been with Him for over three years of indoctrination into the principles of Christianity, that they needed to go to Jerusalem and wait there to be endued with power from above.
Acts 1:4-5, 8 “And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, ‘which,’ He said, ‘you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now...But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you…’”
In religion, the power that enables the believer to carry out the doctrinal duties that his religion requires of him, is derived from the commitment of such believer to the doctrines that he has been taught. His fervor for what he believes and has been taught, is what drives his motives to attain what is required of him, but he himself provides the power.
In Christianity, we have doctrines, and they require fervor, but the power to attain what is required of its believers is provided by God Himself. Now why is that?
Ephesians 3:19 “To know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”
Is a matter of love and hate!
If the human nature had good in it, then a good doctrine would incite that good nature to do the righteous requirements of the Christian doctrine. But the Bible declares that there is no one, no not one, that does good. So to entrust a good doctrine upon those who are incapable to live up to its godly requirements would be folly.
Romans 3:10 “As it is written: ‘There is none righteous, no, not one.’”
Now in religion that is not a problem, if those who practice such religion are in it for self-gain. Whether it is to lord it over others, or to gain profit from its practice, or just simply to make the claim that they are better than others because of the accomplishments that they themselves are able to achieve through their religious convictions.
1 Corinthians 15:19 “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.”
True Christianity is rooted in unconditional love, that is why true Christianity cannot be exercised by self-generated power. Those who try to live up to the requirements of Christian doctrine by their own power are destined to fail, for it is an impossibility.
The only way to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge is by being filled with all the fullness of God.
When we become born again Christians, the Lord provides us with His Spirit, He fills us with Him, so that we can fulfill the law of Christ which is rooted and grounded in His love.
Ephesians 3:17 “That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love.”
So that we can fulfill the requirements of the Christian doctrine.
Galatians 6:2 “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”
But we have to believe that it is the Spirit of God who empowers us from within to fulfill that which is required of us.
Now there are questions as to when are we filled with the power of God’s Spirit, and as to what the difference is, if any, about the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I want to shed light on these questions in this lesson.
The first thing that we need to be aware of is that during the ministry of Jesus, the believers had not yet received the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. For the Holy Spirit could not come until after Jesus left.
John 7:38-39 “‘He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water’. But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.”
Jesus told His disciples that He was going to Jerusalem to die for men’s sins, and then He told them that He would not leave them comfortless, but that they should wait for the Promise of the Father, that is to be filled with the Spirit and with power.
Now since Jesus has already been glorified, all those of us who believe in Jesus and become born again, are immediately filled with God’s Holy Spirit and power.
1 Corinthians 12:13 “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.”
One cannot be a true Christian unless he/she is born of the One Spirit, and made part of the body of Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 1:19 “And what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power.”
It is very clear then, that within all the born again believers resides the power of God in essence form: according to the power that works in us, but notice how our opening text words it, the power that works in us.
Works implies that a progression is taking place, as in a work in progress, as I wrote in my last lesson on the deliverance page, the renewing of the Holy Spirit goes from essence, to presence, to power, but it is always according to the power that works in us, because of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit through our born again experience.
What is the working of the Spirit trying to accomplish in us?
It is working to transform us from the old nature of hate into the new nature of love.
Even though His power will always be present in us who have been born of His Spirit in essence form, His presence in us will not always be evident, much less His power, if we are not fulfilling the law of Christ.
Galatians 5:16, 25 “I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh...If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.”
Here we see then, that it is possible to have the Spirit of God in us, and not be walking according to the Spirit.
How do we fail to walk in the Spirit of God? When we fail to walk by faith and to abide in love! That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love.
Love is the manifestation of the presence of Jesus in us, and faith enables His power to be manifested in us and through us.
That is why we are commanded to be filled with the full manifestation of His Spirit.
Ephesians 5:18 “And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit.”
Dissipation means to break up into different parts, if we walk to fulfill the lust of the flesh instead of walking after the Spirit, we separate the essence of the power that works within us, by preventing the love of God from manifesting itself, thereby disqualifying the power of faith.
What about the baptism of the Holy Spirit through the laying on of hands?
1 Timothy 4:14 “Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership.”
Since all born again believers have the essence of the Spirit within them, all are qualified to receive the anointing power, as long as they continue to walk by the power of faith and in the Spirit of love.
We need to recognize also that there are diverse gifts that come with the essence of the Spirit within us, once we become born again, and those gifts are available to those who believe.
These gifts are activated by words of prophecy and by the laying on of the hands of the eldership, those who are spiritually mature in Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:1, 31 “Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant...But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way.”
Paul tells us that there are gifts that are available to all believers, he does not want us to be ignorant, or to ignore them, and he wants us to desire the best gifts that are available to us, but then he adds this: And yet I show you a more excellent way.
1 Corinthians 13:1 “...But have not love…”
The essence of love is the manifestation of His presence, if we abide in total unconditional love, then everything that we are or have belongs to Him. It does not matter what gift we have as long as is the one that He wants us to have. For by faith we believe that whatever gift He gives us will be the best for us to glorify His holy name.
For details about the gifts and their operation go to the Manual’s page in the houseoffaithministries.org web page, open the Intercessors Manual and go to the chapter titled Application of the Gifs of the Holy Spirit.
To this date it is the most downloaded of all the books and manuals that I have written.