“Old-fashioned” but never-ending
“Old-fashioned” but never-failing
“Old fashioned” but ever speaking
Give me the old-fashioned power of the blood, that old rugged cross and the exaltation of Jesus Christ as Lord and there’s nothing that can stand in my way as a blood-bought child of God.
The old fashioned power of the Blood of Jesus Christ is still there on the mercy seat in Heaven before the Father. It has never been removed, it has never lost its power and it never will.
But the devil doesn’t want the Church to know the power of the blood. In particular there has been a sustained effort to cover it up over these last few decades. So let’s have a look at it.
What power does the Blood have?
What gives the Blood its power?
And how can we experience the Blood’s full power in our lives?
The Power of the Blood of Jesus
- Peace is made between man and God Colossians 1:20
“ and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.”
- Forgiveness of sins Colossians 1:14
“ in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.”
- Eternal Life John 6:54
“Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.”
- Satan is Overcome Revelation 12:11
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.”
- Continual Cleansing from all Sin 1 John 1:7
“But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.”
- Set Free from bondage to a Guilty Conscience to Serve God Hebrews 9:14
“how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?”
- Liberty to Enter and Remain in the Holy of Holies of God’s Presence Hebrews 10:19
“Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus,”
What Gives the Blood its Power?
Like the old hymn says “There’s power, power wonder-working power in the Blood of the Lamb”…
The Blood of the Lamb surely has power even now. We can testify to its power to cast demons out of people, save people and set them free..
But it is the power of the blood of the Lamb.
- Jesus Became the Lamb of God
Not a mighty warrior, a conquering superhero, but a Lamb. A lamb has a meek and humble disposition. A lamb doesn’t fight. A lamb is led to the slaughter quietly, a lamb doesn’t protest.
It is the power of the blood of the Lamb
“So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” Rev 7:14
Jesus became the Lamb of God, who took away the sins of the world. He was the final Lamb in fulfilment of all those thousands of lambs in the Old Covenant that were killed on the altar for man’s sin.
He literally became the physical Lamb as an atonement, but it was more than that.
- The Disposition of the Lamb
He was also the Lamb in disposition. Jesus was meek and unresisting. In total submission to the Father He allowed man to do whatever they wanted to Him and He didn’t fight back, He didn’t resist, nor protest. He yielded the whole time, even to death.
“And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” Phil 2:8
“He’s not merely the Lamb because He died on the cross, but He died on the cross because He’s the Lamb.” Roy Hession
Hebrews 9:14 says “how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God…”
Truly Christ was so humble that He offered Himself to God as the Lamb, willing to do whatever the Father wanted.
It was because of this disposition of utter self-denial, of the complete surrender of the Lamb and of His deep humility that God exalted Him and gave Him the Name above every name.
So we see how valuable this disposition is to God. This was the disposition He was after when He created Adam. But Adam rebelled against his Creator and took the path of Self instead. Thus all mankind has followed Adam down this path of Self and rejected submission to our Creator and God. This is the essence of sin: self and pride.
But God found that disposition in one Man: the Man Christ Jesus.
And His shed blood is the ultimate expression of this humility.
“It was because the shedding of His blood so supremely expressed this disposition that it is so utterly precious to God and so all-availing for man and his sin” Roy Hession
Just as the shed blood’s power comes from the Lamb’s disposition, so too in our own lives, the power of the blood becomes available to us as we follow the Lamb and partake of His divine nature.
Just as He submitted fully to the Father’s will and yielded up His life to Him, so we too can know the full power of the Blood as we submit to the Father, willingly and quietly obeying His will, laying down our own wants, desires, rights and ambitions. As we offer up our bodies as a living sacrifice to Him, He fills us with His Spirit and the disposition of the Lamb becomes ours.
Lord, help us to truly submit to You. To lay down our life for you as You lay down Your life for us. As we do, fill us with your Spirit and may the fruits of the Spirit, such as meekness, gentleness truly become evident in our lives. We thank you for becoming the Lamb who took away our sins, may we become lambs now and follow You wherever you go. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
*Based on teaching from Roy Hession’s book “The Calvary Road”
“I wasn’t God’s first choice for what I’ve done in China…I don’t know who it was…it must have been a man…a well-educated man. I don’t know what happened. Perhaps he died. Perhaps he wasn’t willing…and God looked down…and saw Gladys Aylward…and God said, “Well, she’s willing…”
Gladys Aylward, Missionary to China
And birds have nests
But the Son of Man
For His head to rest
What is the cost
To follow Him?
That that too
Will be my lot.
I may be lonely
What is that to Him?
I may be sad
Oh that I may enter into
I see it
My laying down
Of my life
Meant letting go
Of the things others have
And seek after
Sometimes they come to taunt me
In the dark of night
Sometimes they batter on my head
And remind me of what I don’t have
And it’s true
Career: outside the camp
But I have Him: I have Jesus
Not just in word
Or in some banal religious way
But I have Him
I know Him
I join with Him
I follow Him
I love Him
And the Son of Man hath nowhere to lay His head
You’ve been heading one way…”But God…”
You’ve received a diagnosis… “But God…”
You have nowhere to live… “But God…”
Your marriage is struggling… “But God…”
You don’t know how you will get through this…”But God….”
These words are like a great signpost in the middle of the path of your life.
They signal God’s intervention in our lives. They signal God’s mercy in caring enough to reach down and move in our circumstances.
“But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us” Ephesians 2:4
“But God…” there it stands, two words that are full of promise. These two words can change the course of your future.
But God… that is all it takes to raise the dead to life.
But God… is all that is needed to change your direction
But God… lifts us up from the ash-heap to the heavenly places in Christ
But God… don’t walk past the signpost. Don’t accept that this is how it just is. Don’t give in. Don’t believe the words of man.
Stop. Look up.
There is God’s Word “But God….”
Take hold of a promise of God.
Know that if God can take you, who was dead in trespass and sin, and intervene to make you alive together with Christ, then God can certainly intervene in your situation now.
There is a way, and it’s God’s way. He has an answer, He has an outcome.
Take hold of “But God…”
“Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.”
Corrie Ten Boom
In Suffering: According to the Pattern, we saw that Calvary is the pattern. And if we are God’s child He will deal with us according to the pattern.
“That is the strange lesson we all have to learn, and Calvary is the pattern of it from beginning to end. God’s victories look like defeats. It is victory in the unseen realm while one is apparently, absolutely down and out in the visible.” Prayer and Evangelism, Jessie Penn-Lewis (emphasis mine).
Therefore if Calvary is the pattern, then we know that the pattern is of suffering because we know that Christ our Lord and
Saviour suffered. Conversely we also know that if the pattern is of Calvary, then the pattern is also of victory because we know that through suffering our Lord was greatly victorious.
If we are the disciples of Jesus Christ, then we will too be greatly victorious in Him. However, it is through suffering that the victory will be won. This was true of Paul, of Peter and of all the apostles. And it is true of us too.
“The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.” Luke 6:40
We know the story of Peter denying Christ thrice. We know that Jesus, in His mercy, sought Peter out after the resurrection and restored him. The interesting thing is that once Jesus had restored Peter, He prophesied over him. Jesus foretold to Peter the actual pinnacle of his life for God – the very event that would bring the greatest glory to God.
It is interesting to note that Jesus’ prophesy excluded the fact that Peter was to be always happy, healthy and eventually own his own private jet. Why is that? Surely that would bring God the most glory! No, rather, what Jesus told Peter was something according to the pattern:
“’Most assuredly, I say to you, when you were younger, you girded yourself and walked where you wished; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish’. This He spoke, signifying by what death he would glorify God. And when He had spoken this, He said to him, “Follow Me.”” John 21:18, 19 (emphasis mine)
Peter was to glorify God by being crucified!
How could this bring glory to God? This really goes against the grain of our own thinking….
But remember: God’s victories look like defeats.
Consider for a moment this man, Peter. He had fearfully denied Jesus over and over again in order to preserve his own life and avoid the agony and humiliation of the cross. Could it be possible that this man would one day be so given to Christ, so full of the Holy Spirit that the fear of pain and death, the fear of the loss of his reputation would be so victoriously overcome that he would eventually take up his cross and follow Christ?
Jesus knew that the one thing Peter wished to avoid the most was the very thing that would bring God the most glory!
You see, Self is always trying to preserve Self (ie. Self-preservation). Self, or the “flesh”, cries out for comfort, for ease, for safety, to be liked and accepted. Feed me! Please me! Preserve me above all else! It is only when the power of the flesh has been broken that it is able to come under the dominion of the Holy Spirit. Unfortunately the flesh in man is strong. So strong that it usually takes the rod of suffering to break its strength throughout a lifetime.
The flesh was also strong in Peter. He was, of course, no different from the rest of us, and yet this man was eventually crucified for the glory of God. What happened in-between his restoration by Christ and his death that effected this transformation? The answer is : the Holy Spirit.
It is “…Christ in you the hope of glory” Colossians 1:27 (emphasis mine).
It is God’s ultimate purpose to conform us to the image of His Son. It is God’s will to work His Son in us by His Spirit. Contrary to what we may imagine, God isn’t a dispensary, dishing out to our flesh an ounce of love, a pound of patience etc in order to improve it. This would be futile. Why? Because judgment has been pronounced on the flesh and now it must die. Our only hope is God coming to live in us by the power of His Spirit. God doesn’t give us more love and more patience, but what He does is work in us His very Son. Christ’s nature is loving, truthful, patient and kind and so the more of Christ that has been worked in us, the more His nature will naturally shine through us. In order for this to be able to happen the flesh will have to be crucified. And that’s always going to be painful.
God’s victories look like defeats.
We think of victory as our lives always being smooth and easy. We believe when we are happy and healthy we are being blessed and when we are sad or sick, we are not so blessed. Perhaps we have done something wrong? But God’s perspective is totally different. His ways are higher than our ways, His thoughts higher than our thoughts.
Key Point: If God’s purpose is to conform us to the image of His Son, then whatever happens in our lives to achieve that end is victory.
Be encouraged that God has a much greater purpose than we can see at this time. What you and I are currently facing is intended to bring death to Self in order to allow the Spirit of life to work in us. If we yield to His hand He will bring forth a great victory in us and through us. And God will be glorified.
Next post ….. From Confinement to Enlargement