Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I Am Telling You, Jesus Sent Us Out With Power

I think we too easily forget who we are in Jesus Christ. We get so used to the rules of this world, the natural laws, the restrictions of our flesh that we forget that we are more than this. Have you read the gospels? Have you read the life of Jesus? Do you know who he is?

Let me tell you, Jesus was 100% man and 100% God. However, he set aside his divinity so that he could take our place. Oh, he was/is divine but he did not avail himself of these powers and privileges. He walked, lived, worked, slept, ate just like we do every day. When he hurt himself he felt pain. If this is true then how did he do the stuff he did? Good question.

You see, those who really don't know anything about Jesus simply believe that he was a good man who taught about love. They say he was a great teacher that had far greater insight into love than most people today. They put him on the same level as Gandhi. But that's because they don't really know anything about Jesus.

Jesus came to cast out demons and preach the good news. He had to get rid of the demons so people could receive the good news. Right there people start freaking out and walking away. Christians today don't want to hear it because they don't want to defend it. But that is exactly what Jesus did. Read it for yourself.

Then our compassionate God could not walk around in the suffering of mankind without responding to that suffering, so when the first person asked for healing Jesus responded from the love of his heart. Then it became a sea of requests as a suffering humanity discovered the compassionate heart of God. How did Jesus do all this if he had limited himself to his humanity? Can't only the divine do this?

Go back to where Jesus stepped away from his life in the world and presented himself for baptism. It wasn't just water Jesus was baptized with but the Holy Spirit as well. As Jesus came out of the water the Spirit of God descended on him and it was by the Spirit of God that Jesus did all these things. Why? Why would he set his divinity aside and operate in the Spirit?

There were a few reasons but the one I am addressing here right now is that he came to set for us an example of what it was to live by this same Spirit. Jesus promised this same Spirit to us and told us we would do even greater things than he did. When he left he said he was leaving so he could send the Spirit. After he left the Spirit came upon the believers and the Church was born. The book of Acts is not the Acts of the Apostles but the Acts of the Holy Spirit because it was by the Spirit they did all these things. Have you read it? It's out of this world. Nothing there about being stuck in the confines of this place. No patterns of the world found in these chapters.

Why am I telling you this? Because we have forgotten, in the trappings of this world, that we are more than this. We have forgotten that Jesus told us to live by the Spirit of God. We have forgotten that the epistles of the Apostles tell us to live by the Spirit of God. We forgot that we are God's glory and he wants to operate through us in power so that the nations will see his glory.

Instead we set up churches to sing songs, entertain people, give out food and clothing and operate like any other charity would. Meanwhile we have the resurrection power in our blood to cast out demons, heal the sick and raise the dead. Jesus first gave this authority to his 12 disciples (Luke 9). Later he gave this same authority to the 72 (Luke 10). Finally it was given to all believers with the giving of the Holy Spirit at the birth of the Church (Mark 16).

There are far too many skeptics walking around disguised as Christians. Either we believe the full gospel or we don't believe any of it. Jesus said it is all or nothing. Too many Christians are calling Jesus a liar. Too many are saying that only parts of the Bible are true. Too many say that the sink can't be healed, that the dead can't be raised, that there are no such things as demons. They say the only power we have is to live a good life. Wimps is what I call them. No spiritual muscle to them at all. No wonder this world is becoming a darker place as the Church fails to bear the Light who is Jesus. Jesus was more than a teacher, more than a statesman, more than this world deserves. We are more than teachers, more than statesmen, more than this world understands. Go ahead, read it for yourself and see if I am lying. Ask the Spirit to open your eyes and you too will see it plainly enough. God has filled us with his power to reveal his glory and he has sent us out to do it. Go ahead, open your Bibles and read. See for yourself.

And hurry up because we have a lot of work to do!
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