Pop quiz. What do New Testament believers have that Old Testament believers not have?
That’s right! We have the indwelling Holy Spirit. We have Jesus himself through the Spirit living inside of us.
Pop quiz #2. How many spirits do believers in Jesus have living inside of them?
Did you get this one right? Did you say 1? Actually, we have 2! You have your own spirit living inside of you and the Holy Spirit. 🙂
Pop quiz #3. How many spirits did you have living in you before Christ?
Ha ha. This is a loaded question. But, the technical answer- would be zero. You had a body and a soul (which consists of personality, heart, and mind.) But, your spirit is dead apart from Christ. When you awaken to faith in Christ- Jesus breathes life into your mortal bodies and the power of the resurrection raises your spirit to life. At the same time, the Living God comes to live inside of you!
What a day! What a day that is when we are raised up to life in Christ! The life of Jesus breathes life into us. We are raised up to life with him! This is literal. It’s not poetic. It’s not metaphorical. When Jesus died on the cross, we died with him. When he was raised up to life, we were raised up with him. And we were raised up together. At the same time.
Need some back up from scripture to understand this concept? Here you go!
Dead to Sin, Alive in Christ
Romans 6:1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
5For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, a that we should no longer be slaves to sin— 7because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.
8Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.
11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. 14For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
I love this! We do not have to walk in the authority of sin. We are raised to life in Jesus. We have power in the Holy Spirit. It’s easy to be fixated on our own weaknesses. But, what we need to focus on is on Jesus’ power to overcome sin. Because in our weaknesses, he is strong! He has overcome all of my sin, already.
I just need to surrender to him. I need to fall on him. I need to rest in him.
I have power. And you have power, too. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us through faith. In fact, Paul teaches us to pray this way:
Ephesians 1:17-22 “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit f of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.” (emphasis mine)
So, it’s okay if I feel overwhelmed. It’s okay if I feel weak in my natural self. It’s okay if I am exhausted. The power of Jesus is does not rely on my level of caffeination or my level of physical rest.
Let’s remember what Jesus said to the devil when he was tempted in the wilderness during his fast:
Jesus Is Tested in the Wilderness
Matthew 4:1-4 “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ”
Jesus himself was not relying on his physical strength. He was relying on the power of the Father spoken to him to sustain him. Jesus’ time with the Father built him up and delivered him from the hands of the enemy.
Let’s take time today to refocus on the power of Jesus to strengthen us and the presence of the Father to fill us and sustain us!
Let’s Pray! If you spend 2 minutes praying on each prayer point, you will pray for 20 minutes. Take time to use the themes, if you need them, to speak your own personal prayers to the Lord. Rely on the Holy Spirit to guide you.
- Father God, you are in heaven and I am on earth– so I will let my words be few. But, I want to glorify you. I want to worship you. I want to lift you up and exalt you. I know you love me. I know you are alive and on your throne. Even when the world is falling a part, you are on your throne. You are holy and you are sovereign. You are the great king- high and lifted up and enthroned among the cherubim.
- But, who am I that you are mindful of me? Your love is amazing. You are so good. You are lovely and beautiful. I am in awe of you. Your heart is so patient and kind. You are from everlasting to everlasting. Yet, you look on me and desire to have a relationship with me. I cannot comprehend your love. It is too great and too wonderful for me to comprehend.
- I pray that you will reveal your love to my heart. Let me see and know Jesus and his love. Open the eyes of my heart to your love and your hope. I want to see Jesus. I want to understand his passion for me. I want to understand the completeness of his sacrifice. I want the reality of your love to sink deep down into my spirit, Oh Lord.
- I rest in you today. I ask that you will speak to me by your Spirit. I want to be led by you. Your Spirit is holy. I acknowledge your power, and I acknowledge your presence. I want to be led by you. I need to understand how that happens, Lord. I want to be led by your Spirit through your Word and through obedience to what you are saying to me.
- Lord, where I am weak, you are strong. You are a strong tower. The righteous run into your name and are safe. I rest in the name of Jesus. I am unworthy and you are worthy.
6. Lord, cleanse my heart. Show me is there is any wicked way in me and lead me in the way everlasting. Reveal to me any parts of my heart where I may be deceived. Fill me with your Spirit of wisdom and revelation that I can know you better. Enlighten the eyes of my heart to the hope of my calling- I want to comprehend the inheritance I have in Jesus with all the saints. Thank you for your cleansing power. Thank you for your forgiveness in Christ Jesus. (Spend time confessing sin the Lord brings to your heart.)
7. I give you the people who have hurt me, injured me, rejected me and sinned against me. I forgive them, in Jesus’ name. I ask that you will heal my heart. Bring healing to my heart and mind, Oh Lord. (Spend time giving individuals to the Lord.)
8. Prayer for inner strength from Ephesians 3. Pray this for yourself first, then pray for it for your spouse, your children and those the Lord brings to your mind. “I pray that out of your glorious riches you may strengthen me with power through your Spirit in my inner being, so that Christ may dwell in my heart through faith. And I pray that I, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that I may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
9. Acknowledge God’s sovereignty and power. Give him everything that seems impossible and everything that you have given up on. Ask him to increase your faith! “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” Lord I pray that you increase my faith. You can do more than I can ask or imagine. I ask that you ignite in me hope- hope that your ways are higher than my ways. I know your timing is not my timing, but I ask that you will work miracles in hearts and in healings. I ask for you to save those who I love who aren’t saved. I pray that you will bring in the harvest. I pray for you to awaken those who are asleep. I pray that you will lead many to righteousness. Use me, Lord.
10. Lord, I pray for your protection. I ask that you protect my family from evil. The enemy is coming in like a flood- raise up a standard against him, Lord. My life, my family, my church is under the blood of Jesus. I rebuke Satan’s attacks on my family. I stand against every curse that has been spoken over my life and my family. No weapon formed against us shall prosper, in Jesus’ name. I ask that you have mercy on those whom I love during this time of testing. Have mercy, Lord. Have mercy. Show yourself strong! Deliver us from the evil one.
11. Lead me in paths of righteousness for your name’s sake. Show me how to prepare for the days of evil we are living in. Direct our lives. Direct me in any physical preparations you want to lead me in. Teach me to be an encourager. Teach me to help others to prepare spiritually. Please establish my steps and the work of my hands, Oh Lord. I rely on your leading.
12. Spend time worshipping the Lord.