P & F – Day 20. Friday, April 14. 2017
DAY 20 – The Kingdom Is About Power.
Many years ago, I came across a verse that has never left me. It’s found in 1 Cor 4:20 and it describes the nature of the Kingdom that we were redeemed into, that we belong to, and that we function in today. “For the Kingdom of God is not about talk, but of power” (NIV)
Quite often, going to church week after week can sometimes leave us in a numb state. We hear the truth, and don’t get me wrong – it is the truth, and it is doing its work in us as it should, changing us gradually and radically from the inside out. But after awhile, somehow we subconsciously start to think that if we just believe the right things, nod our heads at the right concepts, live our life according to solid principles, that then is all there is to living life as a Christian.
Do me a favour – go and do a word study in Paul’s writings on the word “power”. I was struck by the sheer amount of weight Paul put on the Power of God – the demonstrate-able, visible power of the living God that he served. Paul did not base his teaching and his faith on mere principles. Indeed, he writes in 1 Cor 2: 4 his first visit to the Corinthian church. He says “I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power…..” Now, remember – this was Paul, the highly educated one. The one who could hold his own in court with the top Greek scholars and wise men. But somehow that was not important to him – he deliberately spoke quite simply, and God backed it up with demonstrations of His Power – why? Paul explains “… so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom but on God’s power.” Not on wisdom, not principles, but Power…
Read on: 1 Cor 4: 7 “… this all surpassing power is from God, and not from us” …”Eph 3:20 “…..He is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His Power that is at work within us”.
Do you get the drift here? God’s Kingdom is one of power – at work in us, His people. The same power that raised Christ Jesus from the dead; the same wonderworking power we read about in the gospels; the same power at work around the globe. Not always visible, but fully at work and on purpose. be based on a firm footing. Not based on eloquence or doctrine or tradition or principles – important though some of those may be. Let’s ask God to confirm His Word so that as we speak it and live it, He’d back it up with “demonstrations of His Power” so that together we can work wholeheartedly in His Kingdom with full confidence and authority, and see the breakthroughs we so badly long to see.
Bring it on!
Author: Garry Stickel