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Doctrine of Divine Power

December 26, 2012

The Omnipotence of God

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Introduction

The omnipotence of God is the infinite or limitless power of God. His unlimited power is employed in all that He wills. Much of what God does is from His volition and apart from any other means. God simply speaks and it is done. When God the Son created the universe, He spoke and it appeared out of nothing according to Psalm 33:9 and Psalm 148:5. This act alone exceeds our finite comprehension and overwhelms our human faculties. Further, for God to create the universe and everything in it required no effort on His part as in Isaiah 40:26 and Job 26:7.

For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast. (Psalm 33:9)

Let them praise the name of the Lord, for He commanded and they were created. (Psalm 148:5)

Lift up your eyes on high and see who has created these stars, the One who leads forth their host by number, He calls them all by name; Because of the greatness of His might and the strength of His power, not one of them is missing. (Isaiah 40:26)

“He stretches out the north over empty space and hangs the earth on nothing.” (Job 26:7)

In contrast, the will of man is restricted to thoughts, purpose, free will decisions, and physical actions. Man can never cause anything to exist by the force of his will.  God’s ability to create the universe out of nothing all from the force of His will is the most magnificent and unfathomable manifestation of His limitless power. No other such power has ever existed. Only God possesses such power. All things are possible with God. So, when things in life look impossible from our perspective, we should always remember that to God, nothing is impossible as stated in Matthew 19:26.

And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)

God is able to do whatever He wills, but He may not will to do all that His omnipotence can accomplish. God is infinitely able to do all things that He desires to do, but must at all times be consistent with His perfect attributes or essence. Isaiah 43:13 shows that God not only has the power to do all that he wills, but nothing is able to reverse what he does. Because God is perfect, nothing He does ever needs to be improved or undone.

“Even from eternity I am He, and there is none who can deliver out of My hand; I act and who can reverse it?” (Isaiah 43:13)

Omnipotence is exclusively an attribute of God which is essential to the perfection of His essence or being.  God cannot contradict Himself.

Omnipotence Related To God’s Other Attributes

God’s infinite and limitless power is controlled of His divine volition, which is His sovereignty.  Divine sovereignty functions under infinite, eternal, and perfect virtue and wisdom.  Omnipotence emphasizes the eternal supremacy of God’s power.  Because God has limitless power, He is always in control of all things at all times.  His sovereignty is backed by His omnipotence. God can make and back every promise He ever made. We can trust in His promises as Abraham did in Genesis 17:1-2, because He is all‑powerful and limitless in ability.

Now when Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; Walk before Me, and be blameless. I will establish My covenant between Me and you, and I will multiply you exceedingly.” (Genesis 17:1-2)

God is infinite and eternal. Therefore, His power is infinite and eternal. God exists eternally in three persons who are co-infinite and co-eternal.  Each person of the Godhead has identical unlimited power or omnipotence. Because God has always and will remain perfect, He is able to do anything which is compatible with His divine essence, but nothing that is contrary to it. For example, God cannot use His power to ever compromise regarding sin, evil, or human good.

God won’t violate His perfect justice by making a one of our wrong decisions into a correct decision. He has never abused his unlimited power. As we all know, man’s history is filled with examples of human beings abusing their power. This is because they are imperfect and have sin natures. God is perfect and limits Himself because of His own perfect attributes or essence and by His plan for mankind. Therefore, He can do all that He wills to do, but cannot do all that He is capable of.

Delegation of God’s Power to The Believer

God’s most profound sharing of His limitless divine power in human history is the grace provision of the omnipotence of God to every Church Age believer in order to live God’s plan, purpose, and will for our lives according to Ephesians 1:19-21 and Philippians 4:13.

And what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.  (Ephesians 1:19-21)

I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)

God’s omnipotence or divine power is related to believers in the Church Age in many ways.  In no other dispensation before the Church Age has God’s power been made available to all believers.

The omnipotence of God the Father is related to the blessings He set aside for every believer in eternity past.  He is the author of the perfect plan for our lives and constructed the spiritual life as the means for living that plan while making use of a maximum amount of His divine power.

The omnipotence of God the Holy Spirit was only available to a very few believers in the Old Testament times. Only a privileged few believers were given the use of divine power under the enduement ministry of the Holy Spirit. God has delegated more power to the individual believer in the Church Age than ever before in human history. The power of the Word of God resident in your soul is infinitely greater than the power of the miracles and the manifestations in the Old Testament.  The greatest believer of the Old Testament – Moses – longed to see our day.

The divine power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead is the same power available to each believer under the filling of the Holy Spirit. This power is made available more and more as we mature spiritually because we are thinking the same way that Jesus Christ thought during His incarnation according to 1 Corinthians 2:16. By doing so, we are thinking the same way that God the Son thought from eternity past. The power of the Word of God has never before been provided like this before in history. If you are a believer, this power is available to you when you are filled with the Spirit.

For who has known the mind of the Lord, that he will instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16)

Understand that this availability to every believer should not be equated with the believer’s use of God’s power.  Whether you use this divine power or not depends on your free will decisions to learn and apply Bible doctrine. The omnipotence of God the Holy Spirit is also available to us as He is our teacher and mentor according to John 14:26, John 16:12-15, and 1 Corinthians 2:9-15.

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.” (John 14:26)

“I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine; therefore I said that He takes of Mine and will disclose it to you.” (John 16:12-15)

But just as it is written, “Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.” For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.  But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one. (1 Corinthians 2:9-15)

The omnipotence of God the Son – Jesus Christ, the divine power that holds the universe together, is also available to every Church Age believer.  This is why the universe continues to operate.  This is why history continues in spite of man’s evil, and in spite of anything man or Satan can do to wipe out the human race.  There will always be many people on planet earth regardless of any disaster. Mankind cannot and will not be destroyed. This is guaranteed by the promises of the deity of Jesus Christ and backed by His omnipotence. There is no weapon that man can invent that will wipe out the human race or destroy the universe.  Mankind will continue through to the end of the Millennium when God Himself will destroy the present universe and create the New heavens and New Earth according to Revelation 21:1-4.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.” (Revelation 21:1-4)

Many believers live their lives thinking they are operating according to God’s will. However, most have never sought to know exactly what His plan really is for their lives. Still others, upon hearing Bible doctrine that does not fit their idea of what God’s plan should be, reject what God wants and continue operating on human abilities and human power gained through their own efforts.  Many believers and even pastors never escape their preferred use of their own human abilities instead of God’s enabling power. They even call their own abilities divine power through arrogance. However, this power is all based on their abilities, not the power of God the Holy Spirit. This is because they have never given priority to learning, accepting, believing and applying the whole realm of Bible doctrine.

The divine power given to us is for the greatest opportunity for spiritual growth and effectiveness ever given to individual believers in any time of human history. All things are possible because God has unlimited, infinite, eternal divine power according to Matthew 19:26 and Luke 1:37.

And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)

“For nothing will be impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37)

God’s Omnipotence and the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

The physical death of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was absolutely unique.  His human spirit went into the presence of God the Father in the third heaven according to Luke 23:46.  His human soul went to a part of Hades in the heart of the earth called Paradise as stated in Psalm 16:10, Luke 23:43, and Ephesians 4:9-10. His human body went into the grave according to Luke 23:53.  This was the only trichotomous (body, soul, and spirit) separation in physical death in all of human history.

And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” Having said this, He breathed His last. (Luke 23:46)

For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. (Psalm 16:10)

And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:43)

(Now this expression, “He ascended,” what does it mean except that He also had descended into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is Himself also He who ascended far above all the heavens, so that He might fill all things.)  (Ephesians 4:9-10)

And he took it down and wrapped it in a linen cloth, and laid Him in a tomb cut into the rock, where no one had ever lain. (Luke 23:53)

God the Father was an agent in our Lord’s resurrection by using His omnipotence to restore our Lord’s human spirit to His body in the grave according to Romans 6:4, Ephesians 1:19-20, Colossians 2:12, 1 Thessalonians 1:10, and 1 Peter 1:21.

Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. (Romans 6:4)

And what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, (Ephesians 1:19-20)

Having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. (Colossians 2:12)

And to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come. (1 Thessalonians 1:10)

Who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God. (1 Peter 1:21)

God the Holy Spirit was an agent in our Lord’s resurrection by using His omnipotence to restore our Lord’s human soul to His body in the grave according to Romans 1:4, Romans 8:11, and 1 Peter 3:18. This same divine power will be used to resurrect all dead believers for the Exit Resurrection or Rapture as stated in 1 Corinthians 15:42-44.

Who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord,  (Romans 1:4)

But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you. (Romans 8:11)

For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit;  (1 Peter 3:18)

So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.  (1 Corinthians 15:42-44)

The omnipotence of God the Son could have raised Himself from the dead, according to John 10:17-18. While the deity of Christ could have raised His own humanity from the dead, there is no record in the Bible that He did so.  The reason is explained in the doctrine of kenosis.

“For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.” (John 10:17-18)

Kenosis refers to our Lord’s voluntary restriction of the independent use of all of His divine and unlimited attributes while here on earth prior to his physical death on the cross. This period is called the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union of the incarnation of Jesus Christ. He did not use any of His divine attributes, including His omnipotence, to benefit Himself, to provide for Himself, to glorify Himself, or to raise Himself from the dead. He did this in compliance with the Father’s plan for His life. Instead, He relied on the power of God the Father and of God the Holy Spirit.

The Hypostatic Union means that when Jesus Christ was born physically, He was undiminished deity and true humanity in one person forever. At the instant that he took His first breath as a human being, our Lord Jesus Christ was a baby in the cradle in His humanity, but in His deity, He was using His omnipotence to continue to hold the universe together.  Also, while He was on the Cross being judged for the sins of the world in His humanity, He continued to use His deity to hold the universe together as in Hebrews 1:3-4.

And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they. (Hebrews 1:3-4)

Under the doctrine of kenosis, Jesus Christ did not use His divine power independently of the Father’s plan for the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union. However, during His life on the earth in the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union, our Lord did continue to use His divine omnipotence to hold the universe together and to perpetuate human history according to Colossians 1:16-17.

For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:16-17)

Jesus Christ maintained this voluntary restriction perfectly even under greater testing than we will ever know. In so doing, He never sinned – even once. He was able to do this because He was always filled with the enabling power of the Holy Spirit. This is why we are able to handle anything in life through the intake and application of Bible truth and resultant growth in the spiritual life. Our spiritual life is the exact same spiritual life that Jesus Christ proved would work under all possible circumstances.

God’s Omnipotence in the Church Age

Your faith should not depend on those around you or what you can learn from them. Your faith should stand on God’s omnipotence as in 1 Corinthians 2:5. Paul was trying to tell the Corinthians that, in approaching God, they should not depend on the empirical knowledge or wisdom acquired through education. Human knowledge is woefully insufficient. Only non-meritorious faith perception of God’s word through the enabling power of the Holy Spirit will work. God’s unlimited knowledge and power are the solutions we should seek.

And my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God. (1 Corinthians 2:5)

Believers in the Church Age have been endowed with God’s omnipotence when filled with the Holy Spirit and applying God’s truth to situations in our lives. This results in courage and stability under pressure and sharing God’s happiness.  Never before in history has every believer been endowed with God’s power.

To obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (1 Peter 1:4-5)

Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (2 Peter 1:3)

God’s Power In The Spiritual Life

We have the indwelling of the Father as the assurance and the guarantee that His power has provided every asset of the Christian Way of Life.  Everything that we need to grow spiritually and honor and please Him has been provided by God the Father.  He provides everything from the filling of the Spirit right through to sharing His very own happiness.

We are indwelt by the Son as the guarantee that our lives will be perpetuated because God the Son meets all of our needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.  So He perpetuates our lives and meets our needs.  He controls nature, He controls human history, and this is the guarantee that we’re going to be in this life just as long as God wants us to be. That’s the power of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The power of God the Holy Spirit fills us. The filling of the Holy Spirit simply means that God the Spirit has total control over our souls.  This is His power.  When we are in fellowship with God, we are controlled by the Holy Spirit with God’s unlimited enabling power as in Colossians 1:10-12, Ephesians 3:16, and 2 Thessalonians 1:11.

So that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light. (Colossians 1:10-12)

That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, (Ephesians 3:16)

To this end also we pray for you always, that our God will count you worthy of your calling, and fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power, (2 Thessalonians 1:11)

We have received Christ as Savior and we are protected by the omnipotence of God according to 1 Peter 1:3-5.  We are protected by God’s power.  This is in the perfect tense in the Greek so that it means protected in the past with the result that you keep on being protected forever.  You can’t lose your Salvation.  God guards you, shields you, and is a sentry for what you have in your soul. You are going to be with him forever and ever whether you like it or not.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (1 Peter 1:3-5)

Some Christians become atheists after they are saved.  That doesn’t mean they have lost their Salvation.  It does mean that they’re going to be miserable in this life.  Anyone who is an atheist or an agnostic or anyone who does not give God His proper due in life is going to be very unhappy.  However, he will always remain saved and he will be happy in heaven.  This is protected by the power of God.

There are many ways we as believers can apply the principle of God’s limitless power to the spiritual life.  Some relate to how we handle problems that come our way. We are to handle them with God’s solutions rather than our own inadequate abilities as in Isaiah 40:29-31, Psalm 27:1, Isaiah 26:4, and 2 Timothy 1:12.

He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power. Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly, yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary. (Isaiah 40:29-31)

The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the defense of my life;  Whom shall I dread? (Psalm 27:1)

“Trust in the Lord forever, for in God the Lord, we have an everlasting Rock. (Isaiah 26:4)

For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day. (2 Timothy 1:12)

Other applications of God’s omnipotence to the spiritual life involve the teaching ministry of the Holy Spirit which empowers believers to live as God intended believers to live. This power is illustrated in Jeremiah 33:3, Acts 1:7-8, 2 Corinthians 9:8, and Ephesians 3:20.

“Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:3)

He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” (Acts 1:7-8)

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed;  (2 Corinthians 9:8)

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,  (Ephesians 3:20)

The Believer’s Use Of God’s Power Versus Use Of Man’s Power

Every believer must continuously chose between application of God’s solutions to their problems and situations or to apply human solutions. This the struggle between use of divine power through the filling of the Holy Spirit or use of our own abilities without the Holy Spirit.  The greatest flaw that a believer can develop is to substitute human power, human personality, or human dynamics for divine power.  Divine power is given to us through the intake, belief, and application of Bible doctrine. What we apply is directly from what is resident in our souls.

In every dispensation, God has a plan, will, and purpose for all believers.  Although God is perfect and His plan is perfect, the believer is not. After salvation, we are all tempted to sin according to 1 John 1:5-10.

This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us. (1 John 1:5-10)

As Church Age believers, we do not have the power or ability to live God’s plan for our lives. God’s perfect plan can only be lived by using a perfect power. All believers are given this perfect power at salvation – the enabling power or omnipotence of God the Holy Spirit.

God’s Power to Live According to His Plan

The omnipotence of God is made available by living the spiritual life and the filling of the Holy Spirit as in Ephesians 5:17-18. This spiritual life of the believer grows in depth of the knowledge of God’s wisdom by the consistent perception of Bible doctrine.  All believers are given at least one spiritual gift at salvation as part of the 40 things God gives to all believers at salvation. The combination of consistent intake and application of Bible doctrine to our lives leads us to understand the function of our spiritual gifts. This combination allows us to think divine viewpoint in every situation and to glorify God in the production of divine good. This is called walking in the Spirit as stated in Galatians 5:16-17. The filling of the Spirit and the thinking of Bible doctrine in the soul is the delegation of divine power.

So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit,  (Ephesians 5:17-18)

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.  For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. (Galatians 5:16-17)

Divine power for living according to God’s plan for our lives is made available through our relationship with the Holy Spirit and our attitude toward Bible doctrine. The spiritual life is where we are to seek to live according to God’s will and purpose. We can only accomplish this by using the unlimited power of the Holy Spirit. If we do not, we operate under human power and ability, which produces nothing acceptable to God.

Divine power and human power are mutually exclusive.  Spirituality is also an absolute. We are either 100% filled with the Holy Spirit or we are 100% controlled by our sin nature using some form of human power and human wisdom.  When we use our own human solutions and abilities to solve our problems in life, we are not filled with the Holy Sprit, but controlled by our sin nature. Being out of fellowship with the Holy Sprit is called grieving the Holy Spirit in Ephesians 4:30 and quenching the Holy Spirit in 1 Thessalonians 5:19.

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. (Ephesians 4:30)

Do not quench the Spirit; (1 Thessalonians 5:19)

The Christian way of life is only lived by Christians who live the spiritual life through the filling of the Holy Sprit.  Without this supernatural power, the believer functions under human power, human ability, and carnality. The believer leaves the spiritual life to sin.  The sinning believer can only recover the filling of the Spirit through confession of all known sins as stated in 1 John 1:9.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

The omnipotence of God the Father provides the encouragement for the believer through His grace policy and the provision of blessings for our lives and for eternity.  The omnipotence of God the Son provides the historical environment for the believer to live according to God’s plan by preserving the universe and perpetuating the human race.  The omnipotence of the Holy Spirit provides the enabling power to live the spiritual life.

Human power and ability are no substitute for divine power.  Human power takes the form of various types of legalism. The legalism of salvation by works adds to faith alone in Christ alone as the means of salvation.  If you have added anything to believing in Christ such as making Christ lord of your life, inviting Christ into your heart, baptism, commitment, or human behavioral change, you have not been saved by faith alone in Christ alone. You are not a believer. There is also the legalism of post-salvation works, such as keeping the Law, living a good life, charity for others, and tithing. Again, this approach to living the Christian life is living by using human abilities and power, not divine power.

Your Authority in Living the Spiritual Life

Do you have any authority in your spiritual life?  God has declared that He will never coerce your free will at any time. This is your divinely mandated authority to make your own decisions in life.  However, this means that you are always responsible for your own decisions – no one else. In this age of shifting responsibility for people’s poor decisions to others that had nothing to do with the decision, God always hold us accountable for every decision we make. No exceptions.

The pastor-teacher can only teach Bible doctrine.  He does not have the power to force it on anyone.  Whether we learn Bible truth and fulfill God’s plan, purpose, and will for our lives depends on our decision to use God’s divine power.  No matter how great or powerful or brilliant we may be, we must make non-meritorious use of the Holy Spirit’s unlimited power to learn, accept, and apply the Word of God in our lives according to Matthew 22:29. This is the only way we can fulfill the plan of God.

But Jesus answered and said to them, “You are mistaken, not understanding the Scriptures nor the power of God.  (Matthew 22:29)

Use of divine power always depends on the believer’s volition and his priorities, motivations, and values in life.  Every challenge in life demands the equivalent power and authority for meeting and overcoming that challenge.  The power for living according to God’s plan resides in the function of your volition or free will.

Every believer must take the full responsibility for his or her own decisions after salvation.  This is the law of volitional responsibility.  You can either sow to Bible doctrine and reap a magnificent life, or you can sow to the wind and reap the whirlwind. Every believer has been given equal privilege and equal opportunity to live their lives as unto the Lord. This is why only the enabling power of the Holy Spirit is the means. Your free will is the key as to whether you will make use of it.

To live according to God’s plan, we are to make the right decisions for Bible doctrine, especially under the conditions of stress and distraction.  It also demands the faithful function of the pastor-teacher to accurately teach Bible doctrine.