Believers are ordained to carry God’s manifest presence, power and authority. Part 1 of this article helped us to objectively evaluate our current status against God’s expectation for His Children as expressly prescribed in Scripture. I hope that since that read, you have been making steps to move from “Biblical Abnormality” to “Biblical Normality”. Part 2 helped us understand that God is beckoning us into the depths of His manifest presence. It is my prayer that you are prayerfully taking time to plunge deeper in God.
Deep waters are scary for rookie swimmers. In fact, if you ever visit a beach, you will realize that the shallow waters are more concentrated with human population than the deep waters. I had an adrenaline-packed experience once, at Shela beach in Lamu. It was my first time to visit the breath-taking archipelago of islands, inhabited by one of the most hospitable people. On this particular day, I had a day off from work. I took advantage of my free time to tour the island.
After breakfast at my hotel, I set out for Shela beach which was about 45 minutes walk from the Lamu town. The beach was a spectacular sight to behold. The coastline was donned with meticulously, naturally-formed hills of sparkling white sand; and the tranquility of the deep-blue Indian Ocean waters was therapeutic to the soul. I was overly-excited to say the least and I quickly chose a spot for my self to lay my items and ready my self for a good morning swim. The basis of my choice of spot was that it was less congested.
I immediately got into the waters and began to swim. The winds were a bit stronger than what I was used to in the coastal city of Mombasa where I live. The waves were building up a bit, but nothing to worry about. Though the winds were pushing me further from the shoreline, in my mind, I knew I was still within safe distance.
When I finally got tired and needed to take a break, I decided to lower my feet down to stand. Alas! Alas! I felt my body descending fast into the waters and not reaching the expected floor of the ocean. I looked down into the waters and saw that the floor was no where in sight. Immediately adrenaline kicked in and I knew I was in trouble. I had definitely ventured into much deeper waters than I had ever done. That explains why that side of the beach had few users, a couple with two young kids and my self. I pushed my self back up and frantically begun to swim against the winds to “safe” grounds. Considering that I was already physically tired by the time I considered taking a break in the deep waters, it definitely took God’s strength for me to return to shore safely.
In my return to the shore, I intentionally headed towards the family that I had earlier spotted, just to increase the probability of being rescued in case there would be any need for that. Once I arrived at the shore and caught some breadth, we engaged in a conversation and the gentleman and his wife indicated that the waters in that section were very deep and so many people avoided swimming there.
The truth is, I panicked at the thought of how deep the waters were and I swam from the deep spot as fast as I could. Why? Because I felt that the place was not safe. The shallow waters felt safer for me. Like those visiting Shela beach, could believers be avoiding the deep waters of God? I have shared this experience just to emphasize that as God calls us to be deep-enders, He requires that we lose control of our lives and live a life of faith, which rationally speaking is a risky life.
Matthew 10:39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
In this part of the article, I wish to focus my discussions on God’s power. Every power has got a source. The source of the power I talk about is not carnal (does not arise from the flesh) but is from Elohim, the Ancient of Days. That power brought into being the universe. That power parted the Red Sea and paved the way for the Israelites to pass through safely. That power brought down the fortified walls of Jericho. That power made very dry bones scattered in a valley to be joined to each other and to acquire flesh and be brought to life. That power raised Jesus from the dead.
Recently, God gave me an analogy about activation of power. Consider a socket that is supposed to switch lighting bulbs on or off. Though not usually visible, underneath a wall there is an electric circuit set up that is connected to a power source. The power from the source flows through the conductors in the electric circuit. However, for the bulbs to light, the switch must be switched on. What happens when somebody presses the switch on? The electric circuit is completed. The power is present and available but the key as to whether we will have light or darkness in a room, all other factors held constant, is the turning on of the switch which often required pressing.
For a person to press a switch, he/she is required to have knowledge about its use in lighting the bulbs. Such knowledge is the basis of the person trusting that when they press the switch, the bulbs will actually light. Such a person may have no scientific understanding of how electricity works, but they know that once the switch is pressed, the bulbs will light. Friends, a believer who acts on their knowledge of Jesus Christ by faith, will cause the power of God to be manifest in and through their lives.
2 Peter 1:3-4 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
The knowledge of Him [Jesus Christ] produces faith. While the Church endeavours to teach on various keys to living a life of power, one of the fundamental requirements is for a person to act by faith in response to the revelation of the knowledge of Christ.
Jesus taught that the amount of faith required to move a mountain was the size of a mustard seed (Matthew 17:20). How much faith is needed for you to start moving mountains? Mustard seed size of faith. The truth is, many believers do not exhibit God’s power in their daily living because they do not act on the Knowledge of Jesus Christ. Faith without deeds is dead.
Undoubtedly, the Church today exhibits spiritual weakness. Underlying this weakness is a lack, not of intellectual knowledge but a lack of revelatory knowledge of Jesus Christ. I can assure you that pure intellectual knowledge will not enable you to be a Carrier of God’s glory. It is not more PhDs in Theology and Divination that we need in the Body of Christ for us to experience revival (as important as schooling may be). It is the revelation of the Risen Christ that we need today more than ever.
The Apostles obtained revelatory knowledge of Jesus and not mere intellectual knowledge. No wonder they were willing to die for their faith, and gladly so. They were bold, non-apologetically speaking of the One they had heard and seen with their spiritual ears and eyes, respectively. Their preaching was not mere words of wisdom. On the contrary, they demonstrated the Spirit and power.
Matthew 16:15-19 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
Peter received a revelation of who Jesus was- “You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.” Jesus expressly confirms that such knowledge was not attributable to Peter’s intellectual quotient but was rather attributable to the Holy Spirit. Jesus asserted that He would build the Church upon “this rock”. Which rock? The revelation of Jesus the Messiah! A church founded on Jesus will advance in power, taking over territories for Jesus. No demonic schemes and ammunition will be able to stop such a church!
The Apostle’s ministries were founded on the revelation of Jesus Christ. Looking at the life of Paul, we see this clearly. I pray that as you read the following scriptures, there will be a stirring of hunger within you to know the Lord.
Acts 9:4-5 He [Paul] fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” “Who are you Lord?” Saul asked. “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
Philippians 3:10 I want to know Christ–yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death.
2 Corinthians 12:2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know- God knows. … He heard inexpressible things that man is not permitted to tell.
Have you ever wondered why Scripture permits believers to boast only in knowing the Lord. Knowing Jesus ought to be our daily endeavour and highest priority. Dear Lord, give us the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so that we may know you better! Enlighten the eyes of our hearts in order that we may know the hope to which you have called us and the riches of your glorious inheritance. Illuminate our minds to grasp the incomparable great power for us who believe (Ephesians 1:17-19).
Having known God, act in accordance to the revelation which you have received. We live in an information age and many Christians find themselves seeking for more knowledge daily, whether on earthly matters or eternal matters. It is good that we seek to know God, but that is not sufficient for a victorious Christian life. We must seek to exercise our knowledge in our daily living.
Envision a trained soldier who is given a gun to restore peace in the community in which he lives. Suppose that the soldier though trained, never responds to the enemies’ attacks by pulling the trigger, the gun is as good as a walking stick. Is it the gun that has no power or is it the trained soldier who fails to exercise His knowledge to utilize his gun? Is it the gun or the soldier with a problem?
Sadly, many of us blame the Spirit for our powerless state. The truth is, the problem lies squarely with us. What have you been doing with the knowledge of Christ which you have received. Have you been exercising it by faith?
Apostle John received the revelation of Jesus while at Patmos island and the record of this revelation is detailed in the last book of the New Testament. The Book of Revelation ought to be a favorite for believers because it is “the revelation of Jesus Christ”. However, the devil has kept believers away from the Book with deception that the Book is difficult and a preserve for a few who have special gifts and callings. Do not fall into that lie! Delve into studying the Book of Revelation as often as you can and under the teaching of the Holy Spirit, you will receive divine knowledge of the Risen Christ.
Revelation 1:1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John.
2 Peter 1:3-4 says that we have received divine power for life and godliness through the knowledge of Christ, which God has provided by His own glory and goodness. Through the glory and goodness of God, God has reconciled us to Himself and given us great and precious promises that enable us to participate in His divine nature and escape the corruption of the world. Believers are called to participate in the divine nature: heal the sick, cast out demons, liberate those in prison, bound up the broken hearted, declare the year of the Lord’s favour, loose on the earth the purposes of God and bind on the earth the works of the kingdom of darkness.
Do you want to participate in God’s divine nature? Know the Risen Christ and respond to that knowledge in faith to practically apply it in your daily life. Do you want to escape the corruption of the world? Know the Risen Christ and allow His Spirit Who is purification fire, to work out sanctification in your spirit man.
Many hear God’s Word but few respond by faith to the Word. Few stand on His great and precious promises, for how can they trust He whom they have not known?
The Risen Christ and the Holy Spirit are One. Christ physically departed from the earth, but He did not leave us alone. He left us a Helper, the Blessed Holy Spirit Who is the power of God at work within us. While spiritually we are seated with Christ in the heavenly places, physically we live and move with the Holy Spirit who indwells us. What a privilege!
The Holy Spirit endows us with power from on high, to enable us to do the good works which Christ entrusted to us: preach the Gospel; make disciples; heal the sick; bind up the brokenhearted; give sight to the blind; give liberty to the oppressed; and declare the year of the Lord’s favor. That power is not thousands of miles away. It is within us and freely accessible for our daily living.
Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
Acts 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.
1 Corinthians 2:4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith may not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.
I ought to teach and do the Gospel. This is what Jesus and the Early Church did. This is the modus operandi that our Saviour modeled. The Apostles taught Jesus the Healer and they demonstrated Him as so. They taught Jesus the Deliverer and they demonstrated Him as so. The “teaching and the doing” is the full gospel! I pray to be an effective Ambassador of Christ- teaching and demonstrating the Kingdom of God!