Empowered by God or Man?


I’m told that in NASCAR, racing fuel is everything! When I pull up to the Shell station, my decision on what octane I use tends to have more to do with how much money I have in my bank account than how much I care about engine efficiency! Kyle Busch or Kevin Harvick would never think that way. The high-octane fuel they use matters!

What is the fuel driving your spiritual life? When you wake up in the morning, where does your spiritual energy come from?

Can we say that we have met God, and are in a living connection with Him, one that empowers us, because the power of God is so much more than the power of mere man?

Over these next several posts we’ll glean insights from Paul’s writing to the church at Galatia.

Check out his testimony in chapter 1:

For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man’s gospel I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ (Galatians 1:11,12).

Paul’s life in Christ was fueled by the fact that He received the gospel and it was imparted to Him by Jesus. Have you had such an encounter with Jesus that you can say, “He has revealed Himself to me?” Now, I’m not saying we need to have a Damascus Road experience, like Paul. Yet, even though we have heard or been taught by people, at the end of the day, spiritual life demands an encounterwith Jesus Christ.

The writer of Hebrews said this very thing to the first century church:

Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world (Hebrews 1:1,2).

How much we are experiencing the power of God in our lives (“δύναμις” of God—see my last post) depends on the foundation of our spiritual life. Is my life built primarily upon the helpful instruction of friends, mentors, pastors, or is the primary fuel in my tank revelation of God through the Scriptures, Jesus Christ, and His Holy Spirit? Is your life grounded in the gospel, indwelt by the Spirit of God, and energized by a relationship with Jesus Christ?

Do you daily find yourself drawing strength from an abiding relationship with Jesus and feeding on the Word of God?

To the extent our answers to these questions are “yes,” we can, like Paul, say that we too have lives that are empowered by revelation, not just human instruction.

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