The Power of the Spirit
I’ve been studying a lot about Jesus these past few months. I was thinking about which person in the Bible I should study next, and then I heard in my mind:
“What about me?”
Oh, hello there Jesus.
Last year I spent a lot of time with Paul. I studied Acts (immediately after Luke as someone suggested it was a good idea as they are both written by Luke) and some of his Epistles.
Prior to Christmas I read John Eldredge’s latest “Beautiful Outlaw” which explores the humanity of Jesus. I hadn’t spent a lot of time thinking about Jesus being a man, just like you and I. I guess I had thought He was God so while He was here He was a bit of a superman of sorts.
This is obviously a complete error in my theology; as He needed to let go of His divinity so He could experience our life, then die, so we could be saved.
“Beautiful Outlaw” is a fantastic read and taught me a great deal. I particularly appreciated the point that Jesus didn’t just come to sacrifice Himself for us, but He came as an example to us of how to live. Yes, naturally the way He served but also the way He depended on the Father. We, too, are to live like that, clinging to the Father, sometimes, barely, with bloodied fingernails.
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This birthed a hunger in me to know Him more, to better understand Jesus as man and the Son of God.
Bill Johnson said “It’s vital to note that Jesus did all His miracles as a man, not as God.”1 That kinda blows my mind.
After Jesus was baptised the Spirit led him into the wilderness. There He spent 40 days grappling with Satan. It was like Jesus needed that experience to learn complete dependence on the Father. Remember, He was just a man.
And there’s that great verse in Matthew where He rejects Satan’s first temptation:
“People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matt 4:4)
Jesus had to hold onto the Word to survive those 40 days.
So the Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness and then on leaving the desert, “He returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit,” (Luke 4:14).
The ancient Greek word used for “power” was “dunamis” one of the meanings for which is “miraculous power”. “Dynamite” is a derivative of dunamis so we can get a picture of what power Jesus possessed. The locals were soon to see that dynamic power in action.
What’s incredible, however, is Jesus then gave us the same power!
“When Jesus called the twelve together, He gave them power and authority to drive out demons and to cure diseases, and he sent then out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” (Luke 9:1-2)
I understand from my studies “dunamis” is used here as well.
I might leave it there.
Till next time.
Note: 1. Bill Johnson “Charisma Magazine, March 2012, Charisma Media. Subscriber exclusive content)
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