“In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead.” (Colossians 2:11–12 ESV)
The power of God
Do you know it?
Have you ever experienced the power of God?
I am hoping that you say yes!
I have shared about the fullness of God and that it is God’s will that you live within the fulness of God.
The enemy will try every trick of the book to convince you that you are unworthy to receive the fullness of God and to live under the power of God.
There are different ways the Bible refers to the power of God. Here in Colossians, we have them.
“So as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy” (Colossians 1:10–11 ESV)
We have been strong: Dunamoo: Making something strong or be powerful
We have power: Dunamis: An inherited power, explosive power
We have glorious might : Kratos: Mightly, great power
This power is and should be manifested in every one of us. It is the power of God coming to us, given to us. It is his power in us.
This is important to understand the power of God in us and through us.
I have witnessed the power of God in my own life, in the life of others.
There is nothing like it. You are in complete owe, with a sense of wonder, fear and confidence.
I have witnessed the power when people pray, when his presence is overwhelming and when the atmosphere is thick with the Glory of God that it is hard to breathe. The very word Glory means weight!!
I have had a small vision in the natural in a prayer Alpha leader meeting as the power of God came upon us and what I saw was like an energy field, transparent all around us as we prayed.
I have seen the power of God when people repent and when they become aware of the powerful presence of Jesus confessing their sins and asking Jesus to become the Lord of their life, which is so powerful.
This power is what Paul uses here to describe the “powerful working of God”, the energy of God, which is God’s active power. It is the power of God that we see in creation, and it is the power of God that we experienced when we are born again!
Now, to be born again is not an idea of conservative Christianity or a strand of the church. It is a term that has lost its power because it has been missed used, especially here! YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN!
It is a biblical concept born out of a conversation that Jesus had with a theologian Nicodemus in John 3:4
“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
(John 3:3 ESV)
Nicodemus said: WHAT? YOU ARE JOKING, AREN’T YOU?
“Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is Spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” (John 3:5–8 ESV)
This is very helpful to understand what Paul is saying here in Colossians! Jesus is explaining to him how someone is born again. First, Jesus said you are born from the Spirit of God. Then, Jesus illustrates this by pointing out the wind, which is another word for Spirit. Jesus is playing with words so that Nico can understand!
He says that the wind moves, powerful, and we cannot see him. Jesus says that you can hear the sound of the wind. We cannot just listen to it but also feel it!
Jesus says that the wind Blows; in other words, the Wind Breaths. So if we put this together, we can now know that it is the Spirit Breath, the very Spirit that was active in creation is happening now in salvation, in becoming Born again of the Spirit.
Jesus also said, “That which is born of the Flesh is Flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is born of the Spirit.”
What does he mean? In the natural we are all born of the flesh, isn’t that true? Yes, it is true.
Yet, the flesh is not enough to bring salvation, redemption, and reconciliation with God.
Why was Nicodemus confused?
Well, he was because he was born a Jew, just like Jesus!
Let me explain what I mean!
For an Israelite to become one, born or adopted, the Jewish faith needed circumcision.
The act of circumcision was an act of God, he declared, and it was an act of obedience to God.
God commanded it, and it was God’s idea so that the people of his choosing would be different. The cutting of flesh marked his people and this! I don’t want to go into many details!!
We read Genesis 17 when God makes a covenant with Abraham. So it is the mark of the covenant.
There are at least three reasons as to why God required circumcision:
A sign of obedience to God in all matters
A sign of belonging to his covenant people. Once circumcised, there was no turning back. The man will be identified as a Jew forever.
A symbol of “cutting off the old life of sin, therefore it is a symbol of one’s heart and dedicating oneself to God.
This meant that the Nicodemus was already part of God’s community, born and then circumcised on the 8th day! He and many others were part of God’s community, and it was this community that was responsible to teach him the ways of the Lord through the Scriptures. To be holy and dedicated to God.
But now Jesus says that this is not enough! Circumcision does not save you; this belongs to the old covenant. So now, in the new covenant, it is your heart that needs to be stripped of the old flesh. You need a new heart.
A heart of flesh and not a heart of stone!
“In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead.”
(Colossians 2:11–12 ESV)
Christ is the only one who can get rid of the heart of flesh, of the old heart, by an act not done by the hands of men, but by Christ alone, by his Spirit.
How did Jesus do that? Through his death and resurrection. We are part of it, and we know this because we have been baptised in Christ. Paul said that we had been buried with him the baptism of his death only to be resurrected.
Through faith in Christ, in the powerful working of God, who raised Jesus from the dead! We share in the fullness of God through Christ circumcision of the heart and by his baptism! That power is energy, and it is the energy of God! It is the same Spirit that was active in creation, and it is the same Spirit that is like the wind which blows. The Spirit breathes new life, and we are born again!
That is the power of God! To save a soul, to come and experience being born again!
Let me challenge you! You may not need to have been circumcised to be a follower of Jesus. Still, it thinks, most of you were baptised as infants, you were welcomed into the community of faith, where you were taught the Scripture with the hope that one day you will have realised that you need a personal Saviour, that you need to be Born Again from the Spirit.
If you have not done that, then you are Nicodemus!
Back in my city, I remember in the park holding a bunch of tracks with the four spiritual laws and right there, young and old becoming Christians.
I remember being on the Ship and translating the Ship director Chacko Thomas every Sunday evening in Colombia and Venezuela with the evening free conference “How to know God and make Him Known! And so many people came to see the power of God in their lives as they became born again! I have witnessed people in North Belfast, outside Tesco, giving their lives to Jesus.
So I believe that we are mandated commission to do this as a church. If we are not, we are just an excellent social bible club.
Let me help you to become a son or a daughter of God!