When we pray: “Thine is the power,” we are referring to God’s power. Although God is not the only one that has power, God’s power is greater. God has all power. That is why He is called the Almighty. Like His love, His power is without limit. Any power we have is given to us from above. Any power the enemy of our souls has cannot match God’s power. Paul writes: “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love” (Colossians 1:13). Created in the image of God we share some of His power, yet there are certain powers that God has reserved for Himself. Let me cite a few examples.
1. God Has the Power to Save and to Condemn
Jesus revealed Himself to John as the one “who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death” (Revelation 1:17-18). Furthermore the Bible tells us: “There is one Lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy. Who are you to judge another?” (James 4:12)
Satan does not have power to condemn us. God has the final word. We are to fear offending God, because it is He who is able to save and destroy. Only He. His is the power. God is also the only one who is able to forgive us our sins. The Apostle John writes: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
It is no wonder that when Jesus forgave sins that the Pharisees were offended and exclaimed: “Who can forgive sins but God alone?” (Mark 2:7) They were correct, but they were wrongly offended because they did not recognize who Jesus was. He alone is the Author of our salvation. Peter exclaims: “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
2. His Is the Power of the Resurrection
The power of the Resurrection is God’s power. That is a power that the Sadducees did not know of nor believe in. Yet “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God? For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. But concerning the dead, that they rise, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the burning bush passage, how God spoke to him, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?’ He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living. You are therefore greatly mistaken” (Mark 12:24-27).
Even though the resurrection of Jesus Christ may defy logic, the evidence for His resurrection is overwhelming. What happened in Jerusalem was not done in secret. At the time there were over 500 witnesses who could attest to the Resurrection. Someone wishing to promote a falsehood might say it happened in a remote area and that no one witnessed it except for them. In contrast, here was a cloud of witnesses and it occurred in the capital city where large crowds had gathered. The disciples themselves at first also did not believe, but later they were willing even to die for this truth. As Josh McDowell reasoned: “The only thing that could have transformed a group of defeated disciples hiding in an upper room to eager witnesses that even death could not silence was that they experienced the risen Savior. No other explanation makes sense.” This is God’s power. And it is the power of God that will raise us up as well, since the Bible affirms that: “God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power” (1 Corinthians 6:14).
3. The Power of the Holy Spirit
The power of the Holy Spirit is from God. Jesus said: “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8).
The Holy Spirit is not a power. He is a person of the Godhead. Yet He gives power. As a person He speaks (Acts 13:2), He guides, and He can be grieved (Ephesians 4:30). He is the One who empowers us.
Of Christ we read: “how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom they killed by hanging on a tree. Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly” (Acts 10:38-40). Jesus was anointed with the Holy Spirit and with power. What Christ did on earth was through the power of the Holy Spirit. And then Jesus told his disciples: “Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high” (Luke 24:49).
The power of the Holy Spirit is given to us so that we may do God’s will.
4. God’s Power Is Strong in the Weak
It may seem paradoxical that God’s power is manifested in weakness. If we rely on our own power, we will not succeed, but if we count on God He will grant us power. The Bible says: “He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength. Those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah 40:29,31).
Do you feel weak or discouraged? Look not at your own power. Trust in God. When Goliath came to slander Israel, Saul and the soldiers were afraid because they looked at Goliath’s strength and their own weakness. David was able to defeat Goliath because he looked at the power of God rather than at his own small stature. You have a choice: you can rely on your own strength and tremble in weakness, or like David you can rely on the help of God and be victorious.
The Apostle Paul experienced the power of God firsthand, yet he also endured many trials and hardships. To him God said: “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). Brother and Sister, God’s grace is also sufficient for you. He will grant you His help. Rely on His promises and on His power. He will see you through.