“ . . . And he will be called . . . Mighty God . . . “ Isaiah 9:6
The birthday of our Lord is quickly approaching! I pray this Christmas will open for you a new revelation of who Jesus really is. He is so much more than I ever thought He was. I hope you will also discover that Jesus is full of delightful surprises. He won’t just meet your expectations. He exceeds them!
Last week, we saw that Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection paved the way for the Wonderful Counselor to come, the third person of the Divine Trinity. Adam’s choice to step outside of God’s will withdrew the Spirit’s presence from mankind and left us disconnected from God, but Christ’s atoning sacrifice for our sin released Him to dwell in man once more. The fellowship of the Garden has been restored! God now resides within all who believe in Jesus by His Spirit, sealing us as His own, and guiding us along the path of His will. Our obedience keeps us from quenching the Spirit and allows Him to do His job!
God’s perfect counsel in our lives isn’t the only gift Jesus gave us. The outpouring of God’s Spirit on mankind also opened up another new way we can know and experience God. Acts 1:8 teaches,
“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.”
Dear one, the manifestation of God’s power accompanies the advent of the Holy Spirit! The might of God comes to rest within us, enabling us to become something entirely new. The ordinary becomes extraordinary as the natural meets the divine. The impossible becomes possible, and we become living, breathing witnesses of His grandeur “to the ends of the earth.”
We often gaze back at the wonders of the Old Testament with envy. How awesome it would be to see the waters of the Red Sea pile up revealing dry ground! To witness water bursting forth from a rock to quench our thirst! To experience God’s daily provision as bread literally fell from the sky . . . even to walk the desert for forty years in shoes that did not wear out.
Pretty amazing, I admit. But our longing for the days of old often ignores the great reality that accompanied the Israelites through those miracles: they were miserable. Even with the glory of God revealed before their very eyes, they doubted Him. They turned away from Him and rebelled. They grumbled against God, saying, “If only we had died by the LORD’s hand in Egypt!” (Exodus 16:3)
They saw visible evidence of His presence, and yet they still rebelled. How could they have been so callous toward God? They had a heart condition, one that Christ came to heal and restore.
God still desires to do wondrous works in the lives of His people. However, with the coming of Jesus, the focus of His power has been redirected. He has set His gaze on restoring the deceitful, human heart.
Beloved, the miracles of today are no longer limited to the external works of old—the parting of seas, or even the calming of storms witnessed in Jesus’ day. A far greater miracle awaits those who will yield to the work of the Holy Spirit. Through Jesus, God now raises the dead!
Ephesians 1:19-20 describes “his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms.”
Beloved, if you have put your faith in Jesus Christ, the same power that raised Christ from the dead now resides in you. And it’s available to you. In fact, God is just waiting for you to choose to use it so He can show Himself mighty on your behalf. He seeks to work within your very being, fixing what’s been broken and recreating you into someone completely new—the “you” He created you to be.
Most of us simply refuse to admit that we’re broken and in need of healing. Our pride convinces us that we carry no chains from our past and we have no need to seek God for His healing power. Would you open your heart to the possibility that you have been deceived? Would you consider that a miraculous work bearing your name awaits you from the hand of God? A wondrous gift that will release you from chains you can’t yet recognize you carry?
Trust Him with your heart, dear one. Offer it to Him and give Him permission to do His mighty work. You will be amazed at what He shows you.
And as the heavy chains you’ve carried fall broken to the ground, you will discover a new and wondrous joy . . . a joy you did not know you could feel. And your heart will leap in celebration as a new understanding of freedom in Christ is revealed. You will likely fall to your knees and beg His forgiveness because you waited so long.
Beloved, allow God to show Himself mighty in you!
"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen." Ephesians 3:20-21