By Bill Davis
The success of the Church is not based on my power or yours. The success of the Church is not based on the powers of religion or simple believism. The promises of God are not conditioned on human power or human strength to achieve or do. But they were given by God based on His power to perform! His promises exist and are fulfilled because of His power. The power of God is the strength of God. His power has no bounds, except the bounds He self-imposes. God is omnipotent. God is all-powerful.
The success of the Church against the gates of Hell is based on God’s eternal power. The failure of the gates of Hell is because of the power of God as well. The Scriptures never tell us, that if we have power, we can heal the sick or cast out spirits, or do any supernatural thing. The Scriptures do not tell us that if we have power we can say to the sycamore tree or to the mountain, ‘be removed and cast into the sea’. The Scripture addresses the faith issue. Luke 17:5-6 says, “And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.” And the Lord said, “If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.”
In Matthew 17: 17-27, the meaning is clear. The power of the Church is God’s power. Faith and believing is our responsibility. Sickness, evil spirits and diseases do not respond to our power, but to God’s power. Disease, sickness, and evil spirits are symptoms of the prevailing gates of Hell. I do not believe all sickness is of Satan. But many of the maladies in our world today are because Hell has prevailed against the human race. Jesus spoke to His generation saying, “Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God” (Matthew 22:29). Our misunderstanding of the Scriptures has caused confusion for us in the world of Divine Power.
This religious society has erred, and erred exceedingly. They have failed to know or understand the Truth of the Bible. They have failed to comprehend the power of true faith. The power of God is not released to us at our indiscriminate desire and will. The power of God is not in our hands to do whatever, whenever we so desire to do.
Paul said, “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth” (Romans 1:16). This great message has power and is effectual if it is believed. When one believes the Word of God, God’s power is activated. When we believe the Word, God releases His power within us to do whatever His purpose is. But the power of God in us never becomes our power to possess and use at our will.
Notice in Matthew, the tenth chapter; verse one, where Jesus gave power to the twelve. He sent them out and gave them power over all disease and devils. Yet, in the seventeenth chapter, the disciples could not cast out spirits from the demon-possessed child of the man who came to Jesus. The disciples failed to cast out the spirits, yet Jesus did not fail. He cast out the spirit from the boy in such a manner the forces of Hell were expulsed, with a power so overwhelming the boy was left exhausted.
The disciples later asked why they had failed. Jesus told them it was because having power without faith does not work. Prayer and fasting strengthens our faith. There has to be faith to activate the power of God. It is not our power to use at our will. Deliverance comes about because of the faith of the believers and the power of God. If we do not understand this, it is because we do not know the saving power of God. Again, Jesus said, and His words are clear: “Ye do err not knowing the scripture nor the power of God” (Matthew 22:29).
“Ye do err.” It is clear the error is in “not knowing the scriptures,” and “not knowing the power of God.” What kind of apostolic activity could we have if we knew the Word of God and the strength that is in the power of God?
Our faith is in God’s word and in God’s power. The issue is not if you have power, but if you have faith, the tree and the mountain respond and so do spirits, diseases and sickness. Our faith and God’s power. James 5:14 promises healing with the prayer of faith, not the prayer of power. The anointing oil by the elders’ hands and the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise them up.
One of the strongest examples of faith and power is presented when Jesus said to Peter, “Simon, Simon, behold Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not” (Luke 22:31). The message was clear. If our faith does not fail, his power will not fail, Luke 22:31.
Satan was on the prowl the night of Jesus’ betrayal by Judas. Every disciple was vulnerable to
Satan’s desire. And it is understood well that Satan entered into Judas and that was to his own destruction.
The gates of Hell want to prevail against your faith. The war is against your faith. If your faith does not fail—God’s power will not fail. Again, it is an issue of faith, not an issue of Divine Power.
The issue of tithing is not about money. It is about faith, Malachi 3:10 says, “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” This is a faith issue. Believe God and pay tithes and give offerings and He will “open you the windows of Heaven”.
As Jude said in verse 20, “building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost… ”
Remember, our success against Hell and its forces is clear. Our success is our faith along with God’s power. That power worketh in us! (see Ephesians 3:20). The word “power” in this verse means miraculous power, active power. That power that worketh in us is God’s power, not ours to use at our will indiscriminately, but at God’s will.
Do you want miracles? Do you want deliverance? Do you want the sick to recover, spirits to depart and evil to be defeated? Then do not spend time trying to come up with power. Work toward building up the faith. If you and I have faith, God has the Power!
It is a necessity to protect our faith. We must guard our faith. Do not let your faith collapse. Do not let the attacks of the world, flesh, and Satan tear and rip your faith to disgrace and ruin. But be renewed daily in Word and prayer. The issue is never about the power of God to do, but it is about the strength of our faith to continue believing.
It is our faith and God’s power!
The above article, “The Scripture and the Power of God,” is written by Bill Davis. The article was excerpted from the sixth chapter of Davis’ book The Gates of Hell and the Prevailing Church, with permission.
The material is most likely copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.