Because we are human almost from day one our lives revolve around cause and effect. If we do something good we get praise, and if we do something bad we receive the consequences. This stays with us throughout our entire natural life, however we are spiritual beings inside an earth suite. When it comes to our salvation and walk with God, by nature we are prone to do things in the natural for the instant gratification. Where our true power and restoration lies is in the spiritual where God has already done it for those who believe in His Son as their Lord and Savior. Even more fascinating and important is to realize He did it through His exceeding greatness and power toward us who believe.
Ephesians 1:19-20, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,
In the previous verses Paul’s prayer for the saints is that spiritual eyes be opened and for wisdom, knowledge, and understanding of God to prevail. Paul knows the power of this understanding if we can only grasp the true depth of our inheritance. The sad thing is he was dealing with the same issues over 2000 years ago that we are dealing with today; Christians walking in spiritual blindness. The very separation and multitudes of doctrines we call denominations are due in large to man’s sliding back into works and legalisms. We forget that the Law of Moses came long after the call and blessing of Abraham and his seed to all the nations. (Genesis 22:18) It was faith that was accounted to Abraham for righteousness, not his works. When spiritual man slips back into carnal thinking we lose the concept and power of our salvation through faith in what Jesus did on the cross and the promise of the Holy Spirit. Many Christians believe and proclaim salvation through the cross, but that is where their faith often stops. I know I was one of them until I was finally taught the rest of the story. Jesus paid the price for us so that we could receive the promise; He said so Himself.
I believe these verses are some of the foundational verses for living a life of being Spirit filled. Jesus Himself did not perform any miracles, healings, casting out demons, nor raised anyone from the dead until after the Holy Spirit descended upon Him. (Luke 3:22) When Jesus sent the disciples out to preach the gospel the signs and wonders followed them because He gave them the power. (Matthew 10, Mark 14) In John 20 He breathed on them and said “receive the Holy Spirit” and in Acts Chapter 2 we read where they were filled with the Holy Spirit and had great power in their words and deeds. Ephesians 1:19 & 20 is telling us that God wants us to both understand and live is the same power that raised Jesus from the grave. Jesus did not come out of the grave by Himself. Death could not hold Him because there was no sin in Him. Jesus called Lazarus from the grave back to a natural life through the power of the Holy Spirit, but the Holy Spirit is the one that brought Jesus out of the grave and sat Him at the right hand of God in a spiritual body. Lazarus eventually died a natural death again, but Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit lives forever and those who believe are in Him. This same life-giving, miracle-working, demon casting power can be ours and it is God who wants us to have Him. The Holy Spirit wants to live and be active in our lives and without Him we will fall back into natural thinking. We will still be saved if we believe and confess Jesus as our Lord and savior, but we will not have the power to overcome the sins that so easily ensnare us.
One modern day teacher of the gospel says, “you will still go to heaven even if you do not have the Holy Spirit, in fact you will probably get there faster than the rest of us because you will not have the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome the enemy”. This is true; salvation is through Jesus, but the power to live this life to the glory of God comes through the Holy Spirit.
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