Utility Room: Power Switch
"All power is given to me in heaven and in earth."
After Jesus was crucified on the cross and then resurrected from the dead He appeared to His followers and visited with them for forty days before going up into heaven to stay with the Father God. When He first appeared to them after His resurrection He announced, Matt. 28:18-20. KJV, " All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nation, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world."
In this statement Jesus said that all of the power in the universe is under His control. He then commanded His followers to go throughout all of the world, teaching all mankind about the good news of forgiveness of sins through Jesus' sacrifice. Through forgiveness of sins through belief in Jesus' sacrifice for sin all who believe will receive salvation to live forever in the Kingdom of God which is soon to appear upon the earth.
On the day that Jesus ascended to heaven in a cloud He promised His followers, Acts:1-8, "You shall receive power 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."
Jesus had demonstrated that He had power over the power of evil as He lived among mankind during His three years of preaching in the land of Israel. He had healed sick people instantly, caused evil spirits to leave the bodies of people who were suffering and even raised dead people back to life on three different occasions that we know about. Jesus had great power.
During the time of His ministry on earth He gave His power to his followers and they were able to do the same miracles that Jesus did. Mark 6:7-13, "...He called the twelve to Himself, and began to send them out two by two, and gave them power over unclean spirits....So they went out and preached that people should repent. And they cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick, and healed them."
At another time Jesus sent out seventy of His followers to go before Him to cities where He would visit later, giving them the same power that He had to heal the sick. Luke 10:1-20, "...the LORD appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He himself was about to go....Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, 'LORD, even the demons are subject to us in your name.' And He said to them, 'I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.'"
Jesus extended His authority and power to all of His followers so that they can bring help and healing to people in the world. He tells us not to be excessively proud of this power that He has given us, because this power is available to us only through Jesus' name, not because of our own personal power. We are to be happy because we have been forgiven of our sins through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross. Nevertheless we are supposed to use the power that Jesus lets us use when we pray in faith for our own and for other peoples needs for healing and help from God.
Jesus repeated these promises just before He ascended to Heaven. Mark 16:15-18, "And He said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.'"
In all of these cases Jesus tells His followers continually to pray for other people in His name and in His power. This power is available to help only through the name of Jesus, not in our own name. This power is to continue to be given to all future Christians who believe for this help.
This fact was proven in the lives of the people who believed in Jesus after He had left the earth. Acts 4:33, "...with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the LORD Jesus. And great grace was upon them all."
Here we are told that the people who preached about Jesus and His power to save showed evidence that there is power in the name of Jesus. They had many miracles and healings when they prayed for others in Jesus' Name. These miracles are recorded throughout the New Testament writings.
Paul spoke of the ability to help others in the Name of Jesus which he had received through the power of the Holy Spirit which lived within his spirit. The Holy Spirit is the manifestation of God which we have on earth since Jesus ascended to heaven to be with the Father God. In Acts 15:17-19 St. Paul said that his words and deeds in preaching were under the anointing of the Holy Spirit, "...to make the Gentiles obedient-in mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God, so that from Jerusalem and round about to Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ."
St. Paul repeated this thought through many of his writings such as is expressed in I Corinthians 2:4-5, "and my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive works of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God."
God has allowed us to use the power in the name of Jesus Christ so that we might be effective Christians on earth as we show others through our lives what Jesus is like. When we see Jesus again at His second coming we shall see the true extent of His great power. This is shown in Revelation 5:13, "And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, I heard saying:
"'Blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever.'"
Doubtless when we see Him at His second coming we shall be amazed at the great power that is evident in the person of the LORD Jesus Christ. Until that time we are supposed to utilize the power in His name as we pray in faith believing in His promises. Jesus said in Matthew 17:20, "...if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you."
God wants to show His power in our lives as He answers the prayers that we pray as we believe His promises.
In Luke 21:25-28 Jesus told His followers about the terrible things that would happen on the earth just before He returns for His second coming. Jesus describes His return "And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and waves roaring; men's hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see the Son of Man coning in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up yours heads, because your redemption draws near."
Jesus tells us here that we are not to be frightened when terrible things happen on the earth. He has promised us that He will take care of us throughout the troubles. Even though every person dies eventually as we get old in the natural course of events, we cannot die until God is ready to allow our death. Until that time He will take care of us. Jesus will be with us. Jesus has already told us that He has all power and that we are to trust in Him for help when we have needs.
When the time comes for Jesus to return, and we believe that will be very soon, He will come back in great power and glory. Jesus has not lost His power and authority. If Jesus returns to earth before our time to die, He has promised to take us back with Him to heaven. This is called the rapture of the saints. Saints are people who believe that Jesus is the Savior and the Son of God. Jesus still promises us that we have access to His power, and we use it to bring help to ourselves and others when we pray to God in Jesus' name. This power is with us until the end.
1. Jesus said that He has all of the power in the universe.
2. Jesus promised that people who believe in His Name and in His power can ask for God to help them and other people and God will help them.
3. We should not try to do good works in God's Name in our own human power. We need the power of God in our lives if we are to please God. This power is available through the Holy Spirit if we ask Him.