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07/17/2014 - It´s up to you to do the work

The lack of discernment of who we are and what we do is the cause of suffering for many people who, despite being of God, live in defeat and are asking the Lord for help: My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6).

There is an example in the book of Acts of the Apostles of how someone who was not directly involved in the ministry of the Word was used by the Lord God to perform wonders: And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people (Acts 6:8).

What was Stephen’s secret? Was he one of the Lord’s privileged? No, God does not favor one person over the other. I can say that he is a symbol of a normal Christian.

This brother of ours from the past had converted, accepting the Lord Jesus as Savior, and served Him with an open heart. Then one day he was called to cooperate in the work of the Lord concerning material things. He was chosen by the apostles, who were burdened with the distribution of food among the Greek and Hebrew widows, so they needed helpers to assist in that work.

They had reached the following conclusion: “It is not desirable that we should leave the word of God and serve tables. Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business; but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word” (Acts 6:2-4).

They decided to choose some people to take care of the material part of God’s work, so that they could devote themselves only to the ministry of the Word and prayer, because that’s what every minister of the Gospel should do. Among those elected was Stephen, who, despite having been appointed as an administrator did not despise the spiritual life. He served the Lord and His Word to the point of being filled with faith and power. He got the two elements that make one person a servant working in the Kingdom of God.

Faith is defined in Hebrews 11:1 as the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Nobody is filled with faith by chance, or by a special decision of the Lord. The biblical formula for achieving faith is: Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Rom. 10:17). It can be stated that the more we hear the Word of God the more we have faith.

As for the formula to receive the power of God, it is also found in the Bible: 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).

It would be great if all people were baptized in the Holy Spirit; then everyone would have the fullness of heavenly power. Besides all the blessings that the non baptized miss out on, the Word says that if anyone does not have the Holy Spirit, he is not of God (Romans 8:9).

Do not despair – Maybe a reader who has accepted Jesus as Savior but has not been baptized in the Holy Spirit is thinking: “I have no power, for I am not yet baptized in the Holy Spirit.” It´s not quite like that.

It is true that the fullness of power comes with the endowment of the Holy Spirit, and this is one of the best things that can happen to any child of God. But those who are not yet baptized should not let the enemy deceive them because there is good news. In 1 Corinthians 1:18 it is written: For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

The unsaved do not understand how we serve God. For them, our dependence on Him is foolishness but they do not know that we feel at full liberty simply by not being a slave of sin and evil thoughts and neither do they understand that we are truly healed; we thrive and solve our problems through words.

All of this sounds like madness, folly and lack of maturity to those who are perishing. But for us doers of the faith, it is the sensible thing to do.

For believers, the word of the cross is the power of God, whether an individual has already been baptized in the Holy Spirit or not. The word of the cross is the message of the Gospel we have heard and embraced. It brings faith and the power of God to those who heed it. Obviously the enemy does his best so that we do not understand it this way and so that we may live far from the reality, because only then he will be able to continue to attack us. But this should no longer occur in your life. From now on, use the power you have in Christ and order the devil to beat a retreat from your life; do not allow anything that belongs to him to remain in you. Keep this in mind: when you paid heed to the Gospel, you received the word of the cross, the message of what was done on the Calvary for mankind. This word gave you the necessary faith and power for you to become a winner.

It is you who do the work – You already have the faith and the power required to do God’s work. So, put it into practice now. Going back to Acts 6:8, we see that Stephen did wonders – extraordinary things – and signs among the people. The text does not say that God acted on Stephen’s behalf. Whoever is full of faith and power is not only allowed to do the same as Stephen, but also to repeat the miracles of the Lord Jesus in His earthly ministry, and even greater things: Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father (John 14:12).

Everyone who receives the word of the cross can and must do what the Lord Jesus did. He who is full of faith and power is authorized by the Lord to act in His name, performing the same miracles, casting out demons and blessing the people as He would do if He were here in our midst. This works now, right there where you are. So get up at this very minute and take possession of your blessing. Rebuke the enemy that is disturbing you, demand all evil to leave immediately. Do not accept any pain or sickness in your body.

If you act in the name of Jesus right now, you can be sure it will work exactly as if it the Lord Jesus had done it Himself. His name on their lips has the same power. Be sure to give praise to the Lord.

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