Thursday, October 17, 2013

Power of the Spirit (Luke 4:14)

And Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread through all the surrounding district. (Luke 4:14 NASB)

Jesus had been reared in Nazareth, one of the towns in Galilee. After His trial in the desert, He returned to the area, and began what we call His public ministry.  He went into the wilderness "full of the Spirit" and was "led about by the Spirit". It appears that the "power of the Spirit" came after He successfully navigated the wilderness temptations, where He fought and won the battle over self. What a benefit of choosing selflessness!

Charles Spurgeon (spurgeon.org) said that the power of the Spirit is visible in outward displays that include creation, the resurrection of Christ, attestation works (the dove at His baptism, the miracles He would soon do), and the works of grace shown when lives are redeemed. 

Spurgeon also described the inward or spiritual power of the Spirit that must be felt to be understood. This is the power of conviction that changes our hearts, our will, and our imaginations. Future power of the Spirit is what refines us in holiness and will eventually  take us into eternity. 

Filled with the power of the Spirit and working in the Spirit! It is no wonder people were telling everyone they saw about Him.  I wonder what people would have to say if we allowed the Spirit to fill and work through us. The same Spirit that did attesting miracles through Jesus also did similar works through the disciples. How would He work through you and me if we allowed Him full access, full power, full control in our hearts and lives? 

Today, pray that we would surrender our will to the Spirit's leading in such a way that He would be free to do visible displays of Spirit-power through us. Pray too for the inward,"felt" power of the Spirit to work in our loved ones (and in us), bringing conviction and change so that they (and we) can become more like Jesus than we are right now.