The Power Of The Risen Savior
By Charles H. Spurgeon
It was no small honor to have seen our risen Lord while yet He lingered here below; what must it be to see Jesus as He is now! He is the same Jesus as when He was here – yonder memorials as of a lamb that has been slain assure us that He is the same man. Glorified in heaven, His real manhood sits, and it is capable of being beheld by the eyes and heard by the ears; but yet how different! Had we seen Him in His agony, we should all the more admire His glory! Dwell with your hearts very much upon Christ crucified, but indulge yourselves full often with a sight of Christ glorified; delight to think that He is not here, for He is risen! He is not here, for He has ascended! He is not here, for He sits at the right hand of God, and makes intercession for us! Let your souls travel frequently the blessed highway from the sepulcher to the throne.
Jesus Has All Power
“...All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth” (Matt. 28:18).
Now, think a moment of these words, “all power.” Jesus Christ has given to Him by His Father, as a consequence of His death, “all power.” It is but another way of saying that the Mediator possesses omnipotence, for omnipotence is but the Latin of “all power.” What mind shall conceive, what tongue shall set in order before you the meaning of all power? We cannot grasp it! It is high, we cannot attain unto it! Such knowledge is too wonderful for us. The power of self-existence, the power of creation, the power of sustaining that which is made, the power of fashioning and destroying, the power of opening and shutting, of overthrowing or establishing, of killing and making alive, the power of pardon and to condemn, to give and to withhold, to decree and to fulfill, to be, in a word, “head over all things to the church” (Eph. 1:22) – all this is vested in Jesus Christ our Lord! We might as well attempt to describe infinity, or map the boundless as to tell what “all power” must mean. But whatever it is, it is all given to our Lord, all lodged in those hands which once were fastened to the wood of shame; all left with that heart which was pierced with the spear; all placed as a crown upon that head which was surrounded with a coronet of thorns.
All Power in Heaven
“All power…in heaven” is His! Then He has the power of God, for God is in heaven, and the power of God emanates from that central throne! Jesus, then has divine power; whatever Jehovah can do, Jesus can do! If it were His will to speak another world into existence, we should see tonight a fresh star adorning the brow of night. Were it His will at once to fold up creation like a worn out vesture, lo, the elements would pass away, and yonder heavens would be shriveled like a scroll. The power which binds the sweet influences of the Pleiades, and loosens the bands of Orion is with the Nazarene. The Crucified leads forth Arcturus with his sons. Angelic bands are waiting on the wing to do the bidding of Jesus of Nazareth, and cherubim and seraphim, and the four living creatures before the throne unceasingly obey Him. He who was despised and rejected of men now commands the homage of all heaven as “Christ…who is over all, God blessed for ever” (Rom. 9:5).
“All power…in heaven” relates to the providential skill and might with which God rules everything in the universe. He holds the reins of all created forces, and compels or restrains them at His will, giving force to law, and life to all existence! The old heathen dreamed of Apollo as driving the chariot of the sun, and guiding its fiery steeds in their daily course, but it is not so – Jesus is Lord of All! He harnesses the winds to His chariot and thrusts a bit into the mouth of the tempest, doing as He wills among the armies of heaven, and the inhabitants of this lower world. From Him in heaven emanates the power which sustains and governs this globe, for the Father has committed all things into His hands. “...By Him all things consist” (Col. 1:17).
“All power” must include – and this is a practical point to us – all the power of the Holy Spirit. In the work which lies nearest our hearts, the Holy Spirit is the great force. It is He that convicts men of sin, and leads them to a Savior, gives them new hearts and right spirits, and plants them in the church, and then causes them to grow and become fruitful. The power of the Holy Spirit goes forth among the sons of men according to the will of our Lord. As the anointing oil poured upon Aaron’s head, ran down his beard, and dampened the skirts of his garments, so the Spirit which has been granted to Him without measure flows from Him to us! He has the residue of the Spirit, and according to His will, the Holy Spirit goes forth into the church, and from the church into the world, to the accomplishment of the purposes of saving grace. It is not possible that the church should fail for lack of spiritual gifts or influence while her heavenly Bridegroom has such overflowing stores of both.
All the power of the sacred Trinity – Father, Son and Spirit – is at the command of Jesus who is exalted far above all principality, power, might, dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but in that which is to come!
All Power on Earth
Our Lord also claimed that all power had been given to Him on earth. …Since all power on earth is lodged in Christ’s hands, He can also clothe any and all of His servants with a sacred might by which their hands shall be sufficient for them in their high calling. Without bringing them forth into the front ranks, He can make them occupy their appointed stations till He comes, girt with a power which shall make them useful. My brother, the Lord Jesus can make you eminently prosperous in the sphere in which He has placed you. My sister, your Lord can bless the little children who gather at your knee through your means. You are very feeble, and you know it, but there is no reason why you should not be strong in Him. If you look to the Strong for strength, He can endow you with power from on high, and say to you as to Gideon, “Go in this thy might” (Judg. 6:14).
Your slowness of speech need not disqualify you, for He will be with your mouth as with Moses. Your lack of culture need not hinder you for Shamgar with his ox goad smote the Philistines, and Amos, the prophet, was a herdsman. Like Paul, your personal presence may be despised as weak, and your speech as contemptible, but yet like he you may learn to glory in infirmity because the power of God rests upon you! You are not straitened in the Lord, but in yourselves, if straitened at all. You may be as dry as Aaron’s rod, but He can make you bud and blossom, and bring forth fruit. You may be as nearly empty as the widow’s cruse, yet will He cause you to overflow towards His saints. You may feel yourself to be as Peter amid the waves, yet will He keep you from your fears. You may be as unsuccessful as the disciples who had toiled all night and taken nothing, yet He can fill your boat till it can hold no more. No man knows what the Lord can make of him, nor what he may do by Him. Only this do we know for sure, that “all power” is with Him by whom we were redeemed, and to whom we belong.
Power for the Church in Our Day!
O believers, resort to your Lord to receive, out of His fullness, grace for grace. Because of this power we believe that if Jesus willed, He could stir the whole church at once to the utmost energy. Does she sleep? His voice can awaken her. Does she restrain prayer? His grace can stimulate her devotion. Has she grown unbelieving? He can restore her ancient faith. Does she turn her back in the day of battle, troubled with skepticisms and doubts? He can restore her unwavering confidence in the Gospel, and make her valiant till all her sons shall be heroes of faith, and put to flight the armies of the aliens.
Let us believe, and we shall see the glory of God! Let us believe, I say, and once again our conquering days shall come when one shall chase a thousand, and two shall put 10,000 to flight! Never despair for the church! Be anxious for her, and turn your anxiety into prayer – but be hopeful evermore, for her Redeemer is mighty, and will stir up His strength. “The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge” (Psa. 46:7). Degenerate as we are, there stands One among us whom the world sees not, whose shoelace we are not worthy to loosen – He shall again baptize us with the Holy Spirit, and with fire, for “all power” is given unto Him.