Devotional: December 5th
POWER FROM ON HIGH
Ye shall receive power, when the Holy Ghost is come upon you. - Acts 1:8
Power is given to us all through the gift of the Divine Spirit. The very name of that Spirit is the "Spirit of Might". Christ spoke to us about being "endued with power from on high"; the last of His promises that dropped from His lips upon earth was the promise that His followers should receive the power of the Spirit coming upon them. Wheresoever in the early histories we read of a man that was full of the Holy Ghost, we read that he was "full of power." God hath given us the "spirit of power," which is also the spirit ’’of love and of a sound mind." So the strength that we must have, if we have strength at all, is the strength of a Divine Spirit, not our own, that dwells in us, and works through us.
And there is nothing in that which need startle or surprise any man who believes in a living God at all, and in the possibility, therefore, of a connection between the Great Spirit and all the human spirits which are His children. I would maintain, in opposition to many modern conceptions, the actual supernatural character of the gift that is bestowed upon every Christian soul. My reading of the New Testament is, that as distinctly above the order of material nature as is any miracle is the gift that flows into a believing heart. There is a direct passage between God and my spirit: it lies open to His touch; all the paths of its deep things can be trodden by Him. You and I act upon one another from without; He acts upon us within. We wish one another blessings; He gives the blessings. We try to train, to educate, to incline, and dispose by the presentation of motives and the urging of reasons; He can plant in a heart by His own Divine husbandry the seed that shall blossom into immortal life. And so the Christian Church is a great, continual, supernatural community in the midst of the material world; and every believing soul, because it possesses something of the life of Jesus Christ, has been the seat of a miracle as real and true as when He said, " Lazarus, come forth!" Precisely this teaching does our Lord Himself present for our acceptance when He sets side by side, as mutually illustrative, as belonging to the same order of supernatural phenomena, the hour cometh when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and they that hear shall live, which is the supernatural resurrection of souls dead in sin, "and the hour cometh when all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth," which is the future resurrection of the body in obedience to His will.
So, Christian friend, do you set clearly before you this: that God’s purpose with you is only begun when He has forgiven you, that He forgives you for a design, that it is a means to an end, and that you have not reached the conception of the large things He intends for you unless you have risen to this great thought - He means and wishes that you should be strong with the strength of His own Divine Spirit.
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