The word for this week is "Able". God has certainly proved Himself able in my life in so many ways. He has proved food when my family and I have needed it. He has provided cars when ours had gone kaput. He has opened doors we never dreamed possible. He has proven himself fully able in our lives. I hope the same is true for you. Enjoy these short thoughts on "Able".
“Now unto him that is able…..” Ephesians 3:20
“He’s able, He’s able, I know he’s able.
I know my Lord is able to carry me through.”
This is not a Scripture, but a song. God is able. Where we get frustrated; where we see restriction and hindrance; where we lose hope, God is still able. With God, nothing is impossible.
He can use stones to preach Matthew 3:9
He can meet financial need II Chr. 25:9
He can deliver us from enemies II Cor. 32:14
He can deliver us from fire Dan 3:17
He can humble the proud Dan 4:37
He can heal Matthew 9:28
He can make us to stand Romans 14:4
He can give ample grace II Cor 9:8
He can save our souls James 1:12
He can keep our souls II Tim 1:12
He can keep us from falling Jude 24
Yes, He “is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we think or ask…” Ephesians 3:20. So, why do we pray so small? Why do we live so small? We are told to come boldly before the throne of grace. We are to live in full faith of the power that works within us. He is the one that is able. Philippians tells us that we can do all things through him. He is able. So…I can: live a godly life, serve faithfully, have victory over sin, grow spiritually, be a witness, control my thought life, be kind, control my temper, and do whatever God asks me to do…not because I am so powerful and great, but because He is able and He lives within me.
“May be able to comprehend…the love of Christ…..” Ephesians 3:18,19
Wow! I can be able to comprehend the love of Christ: this amazing love that gave all for me? Yes!
Verse 18 goes into a description of just how much there is to understand about the love of Christ. It has breadth. It is broad and spacious with room for all. It has length. It is long. It will endure. It has depth. It is deep. So deep we will never get to the bottom of it. It has height. It will lift us up to the summit where we can see that the sky is the limit to His glory and power. And it passes knowledge. There is no knowledge more beautiful or more worthy of our consideration than the love of Christ.
Yet, the promise of the verse is that we might be able to comprehend this love. How is that possible? The secret is in the preceding verse. “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye being rooted and grounded in love…” (Eph 3:17)
That takes us back to abiding, doesn’t it? If we are dwelling or abiding in Christ and solid in the fact of his love for us, then our knowledge or comprehension of the immensity of his love will be able to grow within our lives and we will continually be learning new aspects and experiencing a variety of facets of his love.
The better we get to know a person, the more of their personality we discover. It is the same with Christ. The more we know of him, the more there is to know. The knowledge we seek lies in him, not in ourselves. But through his power and his involvement in our lives, we can, or are able, to know the love of Christ. He wants to share himself with us….do we want to know him better?
“…the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee
wise unto salvation……..”
II Timothy 3:15
My grandfather was often warning me not to be a smart-aleck. I guess I was a bit mouthy or something as a kid! But, you know what? God wants me to be a smart-aleck. Not in a haughty way, but in a confident way: confident that I know my Bible and have applied the teachings to my life.
It is the Scriptures that give me the wisdom necessary to bring me to salvation. Paul recorded that “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17) In other words, faith comes by the hearing of God’s word. There is life in the Scriptures.
Timothy had been taught these Scriptures from a young age. We must remember that the Scriptures he learned were those from the Old Testament. And yet, God said that these Scriptures would make him wise unto salvation. So, Christ can be taught from the Old Testament.
We have the entire Word of God. All we need to find salvation is contained in our Bible. Have you found salvation?
Romans 10:9 & 13 says “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved….For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” These verses alone reveal God’s plan of salvation. Man must recognize his sinfulness and confess it to God believing that Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient. Man must then call out to God asking for his forgiveness and restoration. God will not turn the humble heart away. Call upon him today.
“Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament….”
II Corinthians 3:6
I remember some of the ministers in the little church where I grew up. One in particular stands out in my mind. He was a jolly, round, little man with a Scottish surname – McClanahan. He seemed to really enjoy ministry. He had a ready smile and a positive outlook. I don’t remember any of his sermons, but I do remember his demeanour and a portion of his testimony as he described kneeling beside a large old log and giving his heart to Christ.
I also remember vividly one lady in the church where I grew up. She never had children and was married to man many years her senior, but she was a gentle prayer warrior and gracious person. I was privileged to have her as a Sunday school teacher once. I was so happy to be in her class because I knew she really knew and loved God and I learned from her how to respect God’s Word and to pray.
An able minister is not necessarily the pastor of the church. An able minister is one who uses their life to influence others for Christ. Their spirit brings spiritual life to others by the way they love and the way they give. This is the heart of the New Testament. It is a life of grace, not law. It is life of spirit, not death. It breathes hope into those around and generates beauty and love.
God makes us able ministers. It is not our sufficiency or abilities, but the grace of God working in our lives. So it begs a couple of questions: just how much grace is working in our lives? Are we yielding to the Spirit of God and allowing Him to make us to be able ministers bringing life and godly influence to those around us?
“…being fully persuaded that, what he had promised,
he was able also to perform.” Romans 4:21
I just love this picture. Here is poor old Abraham after many years of journeying still clinging to this promise of a son. In Hebrews 11 God records that Sarah too “judged him faithful who had promised.” They haven’t given up hope. They are fully persuaded that God is fully able to keep his promise.
Growing old is not so easy. We see our skin tone changing; we feel the weakness creeping into our muscles. We come face to face with the fact that time is growing shorter and we wonder what the end for us will be like. I can barely imagine all of these things happening and yet living with the hope of a baby. Where in world would I get strength to raise another child!
Yet, Abraham and Sarah truly believed that God was able to perform whatever was necessary to keep his promise. There was no doubt in their mind. They were living each day in expectation.
Hum? So, when I read Philippians 1:6 and God says that he will continue to work in my life: I can believe it. Or, when I read that God will supply all my need; I can believe it. Or, when I read that God will make all things just in the end: I can believe it.
Why? - Because God is able to perform all of his promises. God is able. That is the crux of the matter. God is able. Say it over to yourself. In any circumstance, God is able. Living by faith as Abraham and Sarah did means that I truly believe God is able and I live in expectation.
“I had fainted, unless I had believe to see the goodness of the Lord….wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord” (Psalm 27:13, 14)
Wait and believe that God is able.