The Power to Deliver
By: John Ankerberg Show
|By: Jim Davis; ©2000|
|Where do you turn when you are unable to cope with a physical, emotional or spiritual task? Jim Davis explains that the source for power in each of these areas is the same: Jesus Christ.|
The Apostle Paul taught that “while we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6). What, or better who, we trust in during times of trouble is essential to our well-being. Jesus also taught that “without me you can do nothing” (John 15:5) and it is to our benefit to learn the lesson as quickly as possible. There is One who is able to deliver us in times of trouble and there is One who is able to deliver us from death and into eternal life. Those who have peace in their lives are those who have confidence in the true source of power that will take them to their destination.
It would be foolish to board an ultra-light with a five-horsepower motor and a three-gallon gasoline tank to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. We need a 747. Likewise, it is foolish to trust in our church, or in the good things that we think we must do in order to get us to heaven. “Now to the one who works, his wage is not reckoned as a favor, but as what is due. But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is reckoned as righteousness” (Romans 4:4-5). Regardless of how good and moral a person you are, your goodness is ultra-light in comparison to the righteousness of Jesus Christ. “But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets” (Romans 3:21). We need the gift of His justification that comes by faith in Christ. “We are justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:24). We need the purity that comes from being washed in the blood of the Lamb. “Knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a Lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ” (1 Peter 1:18-19). We need the power of Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection to get us to heaven.
While I was living in an apartment during my seminary years, I witnessed a most terrible scene. It was early afternoon and I was coming home from work when I heard a horrible wailing followed by a pathetic plea for help. I found a father deeply distressed because he had just dropped his infant on the sidewalk. He had stumbled while trying to make his way down some steps. He had been recuperating at home from a serious back injury. It was one of the most horrible examples of physical impotence I have ever seen. The father was unable to successfully carry his baby down the steps because of his infirmity.
There are two very good lessons that we can draw from this illustration. First of all, we are all like that poor man. We are without strength to reach the destination. Although we might strive with all our might and although we should exert ourselves to the limit of our mental and physical strengths, we would still come far short of our goal. The Bible says that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). We are spiritually impotent in our own strength to reach heaven or to live a godly life.
On the other hand, we are being borne to that destination in God’s arms. No infirmities afflict God. He has the strength to carry us as a little child wherever we need to go. Our salvation depends upon His strength and His wisdom to get us to our destination. That is why Jesus said “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me” (John 14:6). It is not arrogance on His part. It is simply true that there is no other way to reach the destination. No one else has the strength or the ability to take us there.
I have known some persons to be reliable in what they say. If they tell me that they will do something for me, I can count upon them. I know that barring some unforeseen circumstances that they can do nothing about, they will honor their word. But God’s word is a completely different category. God’s word is trustworthy. His character is such that, what He has said, He will do. There is nothing that can stop Him from doing what He has promised to do.
The Scripture reveals to us that humanity is like a sinking ship. There is only one Person who has the power to save us. His word is good and He has both the wisdom and power to protect and provide for His children. While friends may or may not be able to do what they say, God will always do what He says. Paul tells us, “Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass” (1 Thessalonians 5:24). He is completely reliable. Jesus said, “For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him, may have eternal life and I Myself will raise him up on the last day” (John 6:40). His word is good. You can depend on it.