“. . . they were coming out of them . . .” Acts 8:7
The greatest need of human nature is power. We are in constant need of it. The lions and tigers take care of themselves. But us humans are weaker than the animal kingdom. We sense it every day. We are prey of the elements of a thousand influences that could lead us astray and tear us limb from limb.
The gospel is a message of strength. It’s the extraordinary message of God’s powerful plan to rescue everyone who trusts in Him. It is the singular ministry of the Holy Spirit to give us the power of heaven.
From the opening verses of Acts, right on through the book, we track the story of what happens when ordinary people are given power from the Spirit of Jesus. What followers were witnessing were wondrous works in the weak and wounded. Then that power spread from Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and ultimately, to the ends of the earth.
We might be tempted to think power came without restraint. That it’s a free-wheeling brute force that tramples over the unsuspecting. It’s not a self-gratifying display of feats. It’s not an abstract power. Power is a person, the person of the Holy Spirit. He has the power and you have Him in three ways:
The power to share
We have been given the Spirit to be witnesses of Christ’s life to others. We can only know the Spirit’s power as we give the gospel to the whole world.
The power to suffer
One of the most remarkable traits of the early church was the sweetness and grace with which they endured all things. Beaten and humiliated, they rejoiced, because they had been counted worthy of suffering for His name. The Spirit gives power to endure, to deny ourselves, and be poured out as a drink offering.
The power to serve
To work unwaveringly, earnestly, and effectively in the spreading of the kingdom is a result of the power of the Spirit. Through power we are made into determined disciples who do the extraordinary.
Are you depending on God for something that requires more than just your own power?