Moments in the life of a Pastor

Walking with God

20. God’s Power in Christ – Part 2

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Ephesians 1:19-23
“I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself.”

Not only is God’s power seen in Christ’s resurrection but second Paul points to:

2. Christ’s Enthronement (1:20b)

In verse 20b Paul says, “… and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places.” Not only did God raise Jesus back to life on the third day but forty days later Jesus ascended into heaven, where he is seated at the right hand of God the Father. To be seated at the “right hand” of a King was considered a position of privilege, power and victory. In heaven this position of privilege and power belongs to Christ alone. You see not only is Jesus alive forevermore, but he is also reigning forevermore. In the early preaching in the book of Acts, the preachers emphasized not only Christ’s resurrection but also his enthronement. They saw this as the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. In Psalm 110:1 King David said, “The Lord says to my Lord: ‘Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.’” When Jesus was brought before the Sanhedrin, just before his crucifixion, he said that this prophecy pointed to him. The high priest said to him, “I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.” “You have said so,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you: From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
Matthew‬ ‭26:63-64. Not only is Jesus in the place of power at the right hand of God but I want you to also notice His position, He is seated. To sit is a sign of completion, that the war has been won. On the cross of Calvary Jesus completed the work and won the war. His sacrifice didn’t just cover our sin it canceled it out. When Peter preaching on the Day of Pentecost, just 10 days after Jesus ascended into heaven, he concluded his sermon with these words in Acts 2:32–36, “God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it. Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. For David did not ascend to heaven, and yet he said, “ ‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.” ’ “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” So, why should God’s power in Christ’s enthronement matter to us, and what does it mean for us? It means everything. Christ, as the writer to the Hebrews says, “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” Hebrews‬ ‭1:3‬. This means that if Christ upholds the entire universe “by the word of his power,” then we can take all of our problems to him, no matter how great or how small they seem to be. No matter how big the burden, how difficult the trial or serious the sin, we can bring it all to Jesus. This begs the question, if Christ has the power to deal with all our problems then why don’t we come to Him? For some it is ignorance that keeps us from coming to Christ, while for others it is unbelief and sin. Third God’s power is seen in:‬‬‬‬

3. Christ’s Supremacy (1:21-22a)
Verse 21-22 says, “for God put Christ “… far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet” It is here that Paul reminds us of Christ’s supreme power, that He is greater than any human power, any angelic being, and greater than any demonic being. He is above Satan and his demonic legions, for there is nothing or no-one superior to Christ. And Christ’s supremacy is not for a moment but will last for all eternity. The power of people comes and goes, nations rise and fall, even Lucifers time is limited, but Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. We do not need to fear that a hundred million years into eternity some rebellion will take place and remove Christ and His rule, no Paul proclaimed that Christ’s supremacy is not limited only to this age but also in the one to come. Christ’s supremacy above all other rulers involves both physical and spiritual powers. But, in the context of our struggle to live godly lives, the emphasis is upon hostile spirit powers. Later in his letter to the Ephesians, Paul said in Ephesians 6:12, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” But even these spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places are subject to the supremacy of Christ. What does this mean for us, practically, it means that we do not need to fear our enemy, the one who came to kill, steal and destroy. Because scripture declares that we win. So how can we be victorious over Satan and his demonic host? James, the half brother of Jesus provides the practical answer in James 4:7, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” It is vital that Christians get the order right in this verse. For there are really two instructions, and we must be careful not to reverse the order. First, we must submit ourselves to God. That is, we must turn from our sin and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. We must be completely surrendered to God. Like the young man who gives up his civilian life to join the military, we give up our sinful lives and join God’s family. That is the first step, because if this never happens we will always struggle with Satan. Second, once we have submitted to God, we are to put the second part of the verse into practice: “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” How do we resist the devil? By keeping in step with the Holy Spirit, who indwells all believers and enables us to turn away from sin so that we can follow the Savior, Jesus Christ. What about you are you focused on the problems or on Christ’s power and position. Are you surrendering to sin or to the supremacy of the Savior?

 

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