Believers in Christ Jesus are a privileged people on earth because every believer has a divine life, the Uncreated life of God (Zoe), planted in him or her at the time of new birth. The Scripture in 2 Cor. 4:7 says, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.” and also in Ephesians 1:3, it is written that God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
The word in 2 Peter 3:2, “as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,” however, is an indictment on the spiritual state of many believers. This Scripture is not a promise awaiting fulfillment or a word to be quoted by believers; rather it is an emphatic statement that declares the truth of divine power which everyone who believes in Christ received at conversion.
The Christian life is a life of power, not of weakness; a life of glory, not of shame and despair; a life of unending transformation to the image and likeness of Christ from glory to glory. But the sad reality is that transformation or conformity to Christ, which is the expected outcome of the new birth experience, is far-fetched in the life of many who profess faith in Christ.
Generally, we humans are confronted with issues beyond our control every now and then and many of us are wise enough to know that help comes from above. Thus we lift up our eyes to heaven, seeking divine intervention. This aspect of man to God relationship has taken up the major part of our approach to divine intervention at the detriment of divine life planted in us for an advantaged position in dealing with issues.
Believers in Christ are designed to handle earthly issues first and foremost by the power of the divine life received at new birth; unfortunately, due to lack of knowledge, we are always found crying to heaven for intervention in matters that are within the capability of the Holy Spirit and the written Word. In fact, there is hardly any PERSONAL issue beyond the power of the Holy Spirit and the written Word of God. Problems pertaining to other people outside of our jurisdiction are the only legitimate issues that God (the Father) expects us to cry about.
This article is not written to promote the new age doctrine that man is a god or any such false doctrine of self-dependence. The goal is to shed light on an aspect of a spiritual life often ignored by many of us (Christ In us, the hope of glory).
Ephesians 6:10 says “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”
There are two aspects to Ephesians 6:10. The first aspect is a call to believers to be “strong in the Lord,” and the other aspect is “the power of His might.” So in this series, both aspects will be touched upon briefly, although the main subject is the power of His might.
In one of His public declarations, the Lord Jesus said in Matthew 11:28-29 “Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, I will give you rest…..LEARN of me and YOU shall FIND REST for your souls.” The Lord Jesus promises to give rest to whoever responds to His invitation. He, however, did not stop there; He continued that those who believe in Him should afterward learn of Him and as a result, they will find rest for their souls.
So from Matthew 11:28-29, the Lord Jesus tells us of two dimensions to rest: one which He promises to give directly, and the other which the believer will find through learning. It is in this light that Peter writes in 2 Peter 3:18, “But grow in the grace and the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Unfortunately, neither the rest promised by the Lord Jesus nor the rest that believers are to find through learning is a reality in the lives of many believers; hence a lot of people are often seen in prayer meetings and very few people during Bible Study. This is a general situation; though there are worship centers where believers with a balanced spiritual life take both prayer meetings and Bible Study Class seriously.
What is the Inherent Power of Divine Life?
To some believers, the verse Psalm 62:11 which says, “God has spoken once, Twice I have heard this: That power belongs to God. ” may strike the mind; and to others, the statement of the Lord Jesus “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” may readily come to mind.
The inherent power of divine life in relation to believers in Christ Jesus is the intrinsic worth of believers in the spirit realm.
Everyone who believes in Christ Jesus and is baptized in water received at conversion the power of God, which in the Greek language is Exousia. This power is based on the accomplished work of Christ and faith in Christ as Lord and Saviour. It is a believers’ badge that identifies them as God’s people on earth. This power (authority) shines on the forehead of believers to alert unseen entities that one is a member of the household of God through Christ Jesus. There are certain benefits that accrue to believers by this level of power – Exousia.
Exousia is based on the accomplished work of Christ, so it confers on believers what we may call an extrinsic worth. In the natural, Exousia is like the uniform of an army officer identifying him or her as a government official. The uniform distinguishes the person as a law enforcement agent, trained and empowered to execute government interests within his or her jurisdiction. However, as good as Exousia is, it is not the “power of His might” mentioned in Ephesians 6:10. Exousia is the power received by the grace of God bestowed on believers at conversion.
The inherent power is defined in this article as the intrinsic worth of believers in the spirit realm. Believers’ spiritual power is based on the unseen life in the closet. Your intrinsic worth as a believer is who you really are in your closet. I will explain with illustration the intrinsic worth, but permit a brief introduction to what the Bible refers to as “closet.”
There are two sides to “the closet.” The first dimension to the word “closet” is “when no one is looking,” and the second is “where no one can see you.”
When No One Is Looking
The intrinsic worth of the believer is a reflection of his/her actions when no one is looking. It is easy for people to behave themselves or put up show in the public; but in the spirit realm, believers are ranked by their secret conducts. Thus at every point in time, the inherent power is either strengthened or dissipated by our secret conducts. You cannot demonstrate in the open or public what you are not in the secret. This is the reason many Christians are unable to represent God effectively in the public. There are many secret shameful conducts and attitudes weighing down the spiritual life of many believers.
Where No One Can See You
‘Where no one can see you’ refers to the heart. The Scripture says “the heart of man is deceitful and desperately wicked, who can know it?” to express the horrible state of man. While this scripture refers to man in general, the New Birth experienced by believers at conversion is such that we are to be renewed and transformed in our inward parts (spirit and soul) to the degree that there is no difference or disparity in our thoughts, words, and actions.
The Lord Jesus in John 1:47 when He met Nathaniel declares, “behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile.” The import of this statement is that the Lord Jesus identified Nathaniel as a man in whom there is no disparity between his thoughts, words, and actions. Nathaniel was a natural man with no indwelling Holy Spirit, but he was declared as a man whose thoughts, words, and actions aligned. The Lord Jesus did not imply that Nathaniel was perfect; rather He gave an accurate judgment of his hidden life. No pretenses, no gimmicks, no lies.
It is for the state of life described above that any situation confronting the believer will either bow or dominate him or her. Where the hidden life (divine life) of the believer is strong, no earthly situation can linger in the face of prayers.
Lastly, the power of divine life is like the skill that law enforcement agents acquire during official training. Although they are government authorities identified by special garbs (Uniform), their duties require an inbuilt strength and skills to overcome obstacles and challenges that may confront them, because there are criminals (situations) that have no regard for the law. In such cases, the symbol of authority (uniform) becomes inconsequential and what bails them out in such cases is the skill and stamina acquired during training.
In the next article, we shall discuss Hindrances to Manifestation of Divine Power.