Receive Power

“And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. 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 1:4-8 NKJV

Until the final moment just before Jesus ascended, His earnest message to the disciples was “Receive the Holy Spirit”. Though the disciples witnessed and experienced the resurrection of Jesus, they were still lacking to be witnesses of Jesus. Therefore, Jesus urged them to receive the Holy Spirit. He told them that when they received the Holy Spirit, they would receive power and become His witnesses. Luke who wrote the Book of Acts also wrote the Gospel of Luke. Let’s read Luke 24:49. “Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.””

In the Book of Acts Jesus said, “Receive the Holy Spirit and then you will have power.” But here He says, “Tarry in the city until you are endued with power from on high”. So what is the point of Jesus telling them to receive the Holy Spirit? It is to receive power.

Who is the Holy Spirit? He is the God of power. When the Holy Spirit comes, it is like Jesus coming back with the authority of a King. He said that that will be when He comes with His angels because when the King comes, He is escorted by His angels like a king’s bodyguards.

Since we became the body of Jesus and received the Holy Spirit, we also receive the help of the angels sent by God. Thus, Hebrews 1:14 says that angels are ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation.

From that time on, whoever receives the Holy Spirit has power, that is, receives the help of angels. We all have angels so that even our prayers are taken by angels to God and they bring us answers from God. Furthermore, in all the works of testifying Jesus on this earth, we ask for wisdom, knowledge and power of the word. This means the angels of wisdom, angels of knowledge and angels of power come and help us.

Therefore, to be a witness of Jesus, it is imperative that we have the angels’ help. Although we know this obvious fact, we can fail to receive the angels’ help if we do not pray. If we do not pray, these angels cannot help us. Our ministry will be difficult. It will become difficult, tiring and boring. Why? Because we try to do it by our own strength, it becomes overwhelming. We need more angels.

Thus, we are told to pray without ceasing and seek angels. If we do not do that and try to do it by man’s strength or the strength of our flesh, it requires great willpower and also leads to physical damage. You will not be able to bear the spiritual warfare with physical strength continuously. Maybe you can fight it for some time, but you will become weary eventually. That is why we must do the work with God’s power.

When Jesus did not have the help of angels, He could do nothing but get beaten when men beat Him and attacked Him. In the end, He died on the cross. In that moment He had no help of angels. If at that time Jesus sought the help of angels, He would not have died. Jesus does not want us killed on this earth. He does not want us to become martyrs. He wants us to save more people quickly. He wants us to work more.

Samsung’s chairman would want the director to work faithfully. But that does not mean he wants the director to work so hard that he dies of fatigue. He wants to use that faithful employee for as long as he can, right? Does God want to test whether one will really be faithful and lay down his life for Him? God already knows if the person will or not. Therefore, whoever is faithful, He wants to use him for as long as possible. He wants to use such faithful workers for a long time. For this reason, we need to pray.

As we fervently work, we also gain knowledge and experience so that we tend to rely upon our own abilities, not God, and feel as though we can do it on our own. But that will not last very long. And if we do not have angels to help us, it will not be evident right away. Instead, the work you had been doing will slowly die down and power will gradually diminish. It is not as if it will be severed completely overnight. So for some time, you will keep going without realizing you do not have helping angels and that you drifted away from God. You could still work in that state. Just as your savings are gradually increased not in one go, recovery from such a state will take a long time. Just as it takes a while for the fire to start and warm up.

When we come out of our homes these days, if you leave the heating system on too low, it does not heat up properly. To get it heated up again takes a long time. You have to turn it on high for a long time. If it is on high the temperature will go up quickly but if you leave it on low, it takes a long time to bring up the temperature.

Similarly, if you work without praying, the losses you have to bear are one too many. But if you pray and work, the work becomes a joy, you have power and prosperity and experience miracles. We need angels. We need more helping angels.

Just as Jesus said, “This kind can only go out through prayer,” what is imperative for us to have in spiritual battles are spiritual beings who will help us. Moreover, within the works we have to do, we have to deal with demons directly. Acts 10:38 says that Jesus of Nazareth was anointed with the Holy Spirit and power that He went around doing good. In other words, He healed the sick, and drove out demons. These are the works He had to do by the Holy Spirit. He said in Luke 4, “He has anointed Me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind.” In this way, healing the sick and casting out demons are impossible by man’s ability.

Hence what is the sign of a lack of prayer? The power to heal the sick and drive out demons will not be evident in a church that does not pray. But if a church prays much, they will see such power even if they may lack a little in knowledge. They will witness much healing. In this battlefield where the demons that hate us are constantly watching for an opportunity to attack us, it is the most dangerous thing if we do not pray.

Therefore, through prayer, we need to have plenty of ministering angels around us. If we are struggling these days, the cause is not anything else. We need to pray and have many more angels. Just because the Lord called you to work does not mean you can go out with bare hands. There is something you have to do also. It is prayer. Let the Lord work. Prayer is the way we can have the Lord work. If we do not get the Lord to work we cannot do the work either. Lord, let me be the one that makes You work. Give me power. Send me more angels. Let’s pray.

Father God, since You gave us the Holy Spirit, fill us with more power that accompanies the Holy Spirit so we can fulfil the work entrusted to us by the Lord Jesus. Give us the power to heal the sick; fill us with the power to drive out demons; give us the power of wisdom, the power of knowledge. Father, give us the power to perform various signs. Also, give us the power to do more work efficiently. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Sermon by Pastor Ki-Taek Lee
The Director of Sungrak Mission Center
Sermon on December 19, 2012
Translated by Sungrak Mission Center English Team