We all experience moments where we need a fresh surge of that ‘pick-me-up’, supernatural, inner strength to recharge and refresh us. The Word of God teaches us that in Christ, we are able to overcome ALL things when His Spirit, Who lives inside us, infuses us with that inner strength. What an amazing privilege to know and experience our God in this way! I love the way the Apostle Paul explains what this powerful inner strength can do! In Philippians 4:13, he says, "I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]." AMPC
I must forewarn you - this letter is not short. So pace yourself and take some time to go through it carefully, for the Word of God to sink in deep and have its full benefit in you.
To help us understand how we can draw from this supernatural inner strength, we can look at the life of Jesus as our example. Which is perfectly relevant since in 1 John 4:17 says that we are able to live our lives here on earth, just as Jesus did when He was in this world. In fact, I encourage you to spend some time in the book of John and see how Jesus models for us the inseparable connection we can enjoy with our God, through the in dwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Having said that, recorded in the first four books of the New Testament, we find a time where Jesus had to face, probably the most gruelling and horrid circumstances any human being ever had to face in the history of mankind. Just knowing what He would have to endure was enough to sap every ounce of energy and peace from his body and mind. It took place after the last supper He had shared with His disciples. He came into the Garden of Gethsemane to be alone with His Father and pray in intense desperation. Knowing all that He would have to encounter and endure at the hands of the cruel, bloodthirsty Roman soldiers and the frenzied crowd awaiting His merciless torture and humiliating death, must have been nothing less than tormenting. Not to mention that He would have face the brutal onslaught of all of hell and it’s evil demonic power that would be thrust onto Him, as He became the sin of the world, making Him an object of intense horror. (Isaiah 52:14 and Psalm 22 both speak of the experience Jesus endured on the cross. God gave both Isaiah and David a vivid vision of what was to come.). The Amplified Classic Version of Isaiah 52:14 says, “[For many the Servant of God became an object of horror; many were astonished at Him.] His face and His whole appearance were marred more than any man’s, and His form beyond that of the sons of men—but just as many were astonished at Him,...”
Perhaps what weighed down worst of all on Jesus, was that He would have to go through all this terror on His own, without the presence of His Father. Up until that moment, Jesus did everything by the presence and power of His Father that was in Him (John 10:25). Now, for the first time, He would have to do it alone.
Take a look at what Hebrews 5:9 says about the way Jesus was feeling in the garden that night: "In the days of His flesh [Jesus] offered up definite, special petitions [for that which He not only wanted but needed] and supplications with strong crying and tears to Him Who was [always] able to save Him [out] from death, and He was heard because of His reverence toward God [His godly fear, His piety, in that He shrank from the horrors of separation from the bright presence of the Father]. Although He was a Son, He learned [active, special] obedience through what He suffered And, [His completed experience] making Him perfectly [equipped], He became the Author and Source of eternal salvation to all those who give heed and obey Him,"
Jesus was weak in his flesh and suffered extreme mental anxiety over what He knew He was only moments away from having to face. Luke 22:44 says, “And being in an agony [of mind], He prayed [all the] more earnestly and intently, and His sweat became like great clots of blood dropping down upon the ground.”
In my next letter, I’ll explain what I believe happened to Jesus as He cried out, from the depth of His heart to His Father for help, and what caused Him to receive that supernatural inner strength that revitalised and strengthened Him enough to shake off His discouragement and walk with determination and purpose into what He knew He was born to do.
This letter is to bring home a truth to us all. We have a God Whose Spirit lives within us, Who not only knows us completely, but can relate to and understand every emotion and temptation to lose heart, draw back and give up, when circumstances seem too overwhelming for us to overcome. He experienced the temptation to be overcome in this life, just as we do, and yet He found the inner strength to push through, obey the perfect will of His Father and come through victoriously - just as we can do.
Hebrews 4:13 -15 says, “And not a creature exists that is concealed from His sight, but all things are open and exposed, naked and defenseless to the eyes of Him with Whom we have to do. Inasmuch then as we have a great High Priest Who has [already] ascended and passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession [of faith in Him]. For we do not have a High Priest Who is unable to understand and sympathize and have a shared feeling with our weaknesses and infirmities and liability to the assaults of temptation, but One Who has been tempted in every respect as we are, yet without sinning.” AMPC
We must remember that although Jesus was born of God (the incorruptible seed of God placed in the womb of Mary), He was also born of man.
Philippians 2:5-7 says, “Let this same attitude and purpose and [humble] mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus: [Let Him be your example in humility:] Who, although being essentially one with God and in the form of God [possessing the fullness of the attributes which make God God], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained, But stripped Himself [of all privileges and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being.”AMPC
Jesus was as human as we are, and when the Holy Spirit came upon Him, He was empowered to walk and operate in the supernatural, just as we are. Like us, He had a specific purpose to fulfil and a destiny to walk through. And like us, He had every kind and form of opposition to that purpose flung against Him. He felt the burden and weight of every attack and circumstance, just as we do, and yet, because He knew Who He was in His Father’s eyes, He pushed on and through in complete obedience to finish what He had begun.
Knowing and remembering who we are in our Heavenly Father’s eyes, is what will give us the strength we need to overcome in this life. Our identity in Christ Jesus and the strength we receive from our inseparable connection with Him, is more than sufficient to empower us with all we need to be all He has called us to.
Before we talk again, in my next letter, won’t you spend time meditating on John 15:4-11, and Hebrews 4:16.
John 15:4-11, “Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in Me.”AMPC
Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favour to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].”AMPC