David Jeremiah - Knowing a Powerful God
From the first verse of Genesis when God created the heavens and the earth, to the last page of Revelation when we read about the throne of God in New Jerusalem, our attention is dedicated to God's omnipotent and sovereign power. God's omnipotence energizes all his other attributes. But what is there about God's power that you may not know? In today's message from my new series, "The God You May Not Know," we will look at four demonstrations of God's power and my prayer is that you will walk away from today's program not just knowing about God's power but actually knowing and experiencing his power in your life. So stay tuned for today's edition of "Turning Point".
The Bible says, "Great is our Lord, and mighty in power; His understanding is infinite". And the choirs of heaven sing it this way: "Alleluia! Salvation and glory and honor and power belong to our God"! It is the infinite power of God that fuels the universe. Only God's infinite power can so effortlessly keep the universe humming and crackling with energy. So today I wanna just take you on this little journey. First of all, with a bit of an explanation of God's power in terms that we can understand. First of all, God can do all things. Revelation 19:6 says: "And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters, as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, 'Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!'" The Bible uses a unique word to describe God. God is omnipotent. Say that with me. God is omnipotent. What does that mean? Omnipotent means all-powerful. Omni, O-M-N-I, is a biblical term which means all, and we can figure out potent. Potent means power. So omnipotent means all power.
George Frideric Handel incorporated that into his, "Hallelujah Chorus" of his soul-stirring oratorio, "The Messiah," and the words are so electrifying we cannot listen to them sitting down. We have to stand up when we sing about the Lord God Omnipotent. From the first verses in Genesis all the way through the last page of Revelation when we read about the throne of God in New Jerusalem, our attention is directed to God's omnipotent, all-powerful, almighty sovereign power. He can do all things. There isn't anything you can think of that God can't do. Number two. Nothing is too hard for God. Luke 1:37 says: "With God nothing will be impossible". And since he has all the power in the universe at his command, he can do whatever he chooses. And he does one thing as easily as he does another. Tozer indicates that nothing is harder for God than anything else. He does everything with the same amount of ease.
Now that's challenging to us. That's challenging for our finite minds to grasp because we have degrees of difficulty in what we do. Taking a tissue from a box is easier than opening a sealed jar. Have you ever had your wife come and give you a bottle of pickles or something and say, "I can't open this. Can you open this for me"? And hopefully you're still able to do it because it's a man thing. If you can't open that jar, it's a moment of discouragement for you. But God has no degrees of difficulty. He does everything with equal ease. He is able. He holds omnipotent energy in his hand. The patriarch Job said it this way: "I know that You can do everything and that there is no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You". And Jeremiah prayed: "Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You".
Abraham and Sarah learned this lesson when the Lord promised them a child in their old age and you remember Sarah was past the age of childbearing. She was pushing 100. And she laughed at the news, and the Lord God said, "Abraham, why did Sarah laugh, is anything too hard for the Lord"? The Lord Jesus echoes this truth in the New Testament. He's discussing the difficulty of getting people into heaven, and he says, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible". God can do all things and nothing is too hard for God. Number three, God never gets tired. Isaiah 40:28 says: "Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable".
God can do all things, nothing is too hard for God, never does God get tired, and here's one that's kind of interesting. It's a question. Is there anything God cannot do? I've already said God can do all things but I'm gonna ask the question again. This is not doublespeak, nor am I trying to confuse you but I want you to understand something that if you don't understand, somebody will stick it to you someday in a discussion. Whenever you get around young people, especially college kids who are home from their first semester at the university, these are the kind of questions that they ask you. Questions like this one: Can God make a rock that is so heavy he can't pick it up? Everybody go, "Hmm, hmm". Scholars love those kind of questions because there isn't really any logical way to discuss it. It's a perplexing question for some people but not for people who know God. Questions like these are flawed. They're logically inconsistent. It's like asking if God can make a square circle. There isn't anything like that. And the questions are self-refuting and irrational.
Whatever God does in the exercise of his power is consistent with who he is as a person. For example, Titus chapter 1, verse 2, says here's something God cannot do. God cannot lie. Why can't he lie? If he can do all things, why can't he lie? Because it's against the nature of God and God never does anything against his nature. In that passage, the Apostle Paul wrote that he was laboring for Christ "in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began". God cannot lie because doing so would be inconsistent with his nature. James tells us that God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone else: "Let no one say when he is tempted, 'I am tempted by God'; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone". God is immune from temptation because he's holy. He is beyond temptation's lure and he himself will never tempt us toward evil. He may test us to make us better but he will never tempt us to make us worse.
The Bible says God is omnipotent but his omnipotence is guided by his nature and it is therefore impossible for God to lie, impossible for God to deny himself, and impossible for God to be tempted by evil or tempt anyone else with evil. There are some things God cannot do. He can do all things, but he cannot do those things which violate who he is. The explanation of God's power. Let me talk with you for just a moment about the evidence of his power. How do we know that God is so powerful? I mean, if we were going to appear before a jury and convince them of the power of God, what evidence would we bring? Well, let me tell you something. The evidence is just as wide as the universe and just as limitless as the galaxies. There's no way you could ever present all the evidence for the power of God. So since we don't have an infinite time and I only have a short time for this message, I've chosen four evidences of the power of God. Maybe the four most important ones. First of all, the evidence of God's power in creation.
Here's what Romans says: "What may be known about God is plain. For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made". How do we know God is powerful? When we study creation, we see the power of God. As I look at this and remember what the Scripture says, I am genuinely surprised to see how many passages speak of this. According to Genesis 1, "God said, 'Let there be light'; and there was light. And God said, 'Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters,' and it was so. And God said, 'Let the dry land appear'; and it appeared. And God said, 'Let the earth bring forth grass,' and the grass appeared and he said, 'Let us make man in Our image," and he did. In the image of God created He him, male and female created He them". God spoke and the world came into being.
I know the evolutionists don't like this truth but it doesn't matter. One of these days, they'll get it right. But the Bible says God created the heavens and the earth. Argue with it if you want, believe it or not, you cannot mess with the truth. The world is the world that God spoke into being. Frankly, as hard as it is to believe that, that makes a whole lot more sense to me than the modern explanations that I read about in the evolutionary documents. His power was conveyed to build this world by the simple syllables of his speaking. Psalm says it this way: "By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth. He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast". And then there is his preservation. How many of you know that this world is held together by the power of God? The God who created the universe is the one, according to the New Testament, "in whom all things consist," which means he is the glue that holds it all together. God holds the whole world together by his power.
And you know what that means to you and me? If God can hold the world together, I think he can probably hold you together. Isaiah said: "Even to your old age," oh, do I love this. "Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you". Isaiah said, "Even when you're getting old and you get gray hair, Almighty God is still holding you together". How do you know he can do it? He holds the whole world together. He can handle you. And he can handle me. God's endless energy and his omnipotent power is something to behold. And then let me talk just a moment about the evidence of God's power in the Resurrection. In creation we see it, in God's preservation of the world we see it, but mostly in the New Testament we see it in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. "His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion".
He came out of the grave. The Resurrection is one of the great evidences of the power of God. But you know, all of these are great. Creation, preservation, resurrection. But you and I live in an age when the power of God is demonstrated all the time, and it's the greatest power of all. I call it the power of transformation. Romans 1:16 says: "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ," watch this, "for it is the power of God to salvation". How many of you know it takes the power of God to get us saved? Some of you know that more than others. Maybe you grew up in a Christian home and you've always been around the faith and one day you just accepted Christ 'cause it seemed like the natural thing to do. But some of you came out of a life that wasn't anything close to that and the Almighty God reached down and he grabbed hold of your life and his power was displayed. So we're almost finished but I don't wanna leave this message without giving you a couple of takeaways for your own life.
First of all, in the experience of God's power, the power of God should energize our worship of God. One of the things that's amazing to me as I study these various attributes of God is all of them have a connection to worship. The whole issue, men and women, is this: the more you know about God, the more you love God. And the more you love God, the more you wanna worship God. Whenever we sing our songs like, "All hail the power," or "Oh, Lord, my God, when I in awesome wonder," when we sing these songs of worship, we are reminding ourselves of the greatness of Almighty God, the omnipotent God of the universe, the Creator of heaven and earth, the sustainer of heaven and earth, the source of the Resurrection, and the reason why you and I are on our way to heaven, hallelujah. The power of God should energize our worship and, secondly, the power of God should encourage our walk. "Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit," the third member of the triune God.
And then, the power of God not only should energize our worship and encourage our walk, the power of God should empower our work. Sometimes we feel like we don't have the energy to do it. Sometimes we get up and think, "Oh, I gotta go do this. I'm on the team. I do this". Well, listen to this. "God is the one who we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. To this end I strenuously contend," now watch this, "with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me". Here's what I know. It's not what I always practice. It's what I know. You cannot do the work of God in your own power. If you try, you will get only what you can do, but you will never discover what God can do.
When we get involved in serving the Lord, if we're not careful we get into our own persona. We start working hard, adding more hours and trying our very best to make it happen, and all of that is a part of being in ministry but, men and women, God never intended you and I to take on the burden of God's work in our own power while he allows the power of Almighty God we've been talking about here today to be unaccessed by us during the process. We have to stop sometimes and back up and say, "Lord God, this is too big for me. This is too much for me. If you don't fill me with your power, this can't happen. Not only can it not be born, it cannot be sustained. And, oh, I wish I could bring before you the illustrations that I know of people who keep trying to do the mighty work of God without any of God's power.
And we see it so often in the secular realm. In our churches instead of teaching people how to access the power of God we send them to positive mental attitude seminars. We start holding all of the secular business seminars in our own churches to tell people how to do the work of God in their own strength when it was never meant to be done that way in the first place. And so we struggle and we fail and we fall on our face. Are those principles good? Yes. Can we learn from them? Yes. But they cannot be the source of our strength and our power. Only our strength and power from God can enable us and empower us to do the work of God. Most Christians operate in the energy of the flesh about 80% of the time, according to what people have discussed. Sometimes I do that but I'm always sorry when I do.
You know, sometimes in a Christian life you have a power outage. You know what that is? Well, it's going to the doctor and finding there's something wrong. It's going into your office at work and being laid off. It's getting a phone call that your child is in trouble. It's hearing the news that a loved one is at death's door. It's a plunge in the stock market just when you're about ready to retire. These things happen to you, they happen to me, and they have for many years to many people. That's just when we learn to switch power sources and begin drawing from the transformer of God's power 'cause we find out we don't have the strength to make it. Why do you think people say, when they're going through tough times, "Dr. Jeremiah, I felt like God was closer to me than he's ever been my whole life"? 'Cause you switched off your power and you switched on God's, and you found out his power is sufficient. God is waiting to exercise his power in your behalf.
If you're here today and you don't know Jesus Christ and maybe you think your life is out of control and there's nothing that can change it, I'm here to tell you if you haven't tried Jesus, you're short-circuiting your whole life. Until you try Jesus, you haven't tried the ultimate answer. Jesus is the ultimate answer to whatever it is that's happening in your life. If you do not know Jesus Christ, tap into the power that's waiting for you to change your life and make you a new person. If you're a Christian and you're going through a tough time and you wonder, "Is there any hope"?
Let me tell you, there is hope. Nothing is too hard for our God. Nothing is too hard. He never sleeps. He's not ever weary. Whatever it is you need, he is able to do. And don't give up on Jesus. Don't ever give up on him. You may feel like giving up on yourself and sometimes you have to give up on yourself before you come to Jesus but I came here today to tell you how wonderful is the power of God. But most of all to say, "Don't go away with more knowledge about God's power. Find out how his power is waiting to affect your life and make whatever decision you need to make today to get connected. Get connected to the power of God.