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Who are you? We usually answer that question with our name. Then comes the next question, “Who are you, really?” You might respond with, “What do you mean?”
What I’m trying to get at here is, as Christians, our identity is intimately intertwined with Christ. When we are spending time with Him in prayer and scripture study, we get to know Him more and more and we become more like Him (Ephesians 4: 22-24). The next step in our identify in Christ is our authority as believers. We have been given power through the Holy Spirit that I’m pretty sure that many of us don’t tap into on most days. I have seen people adrift on the waves of their daily challenges and they don’t realize that they have the power and authority to overcome.
In the Gospels, Peter had an experience with this in Matthew 14: 28-32. He saw Jesus walking on the water in the middle of a storm and said…
“Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.” “Yes, come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted. Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him.”
For a few moments, Peter walked in the authority of Christ because he believed that he could walk on water. Then, he got distracted. The wind and waves were ferocious and, even though Peter was a fisherman, he might not have known how to swim!
Some might say that Peter failed because he let fear confuse his faith. I like to think that Peter learned a very important lesson that day and the story has taught us a lesson ever since.
Acknowledging your authority in Christ requires focus on Jesus. When you’re focused on Him you can accomplish anything (Philippians 4: 13).
You have a special authority
What is authority? It is delegated. Jesus has given you the authority to accomplish things in his name. In Acts 3:1-8, Peter and John encountered a lame man and said, “In the name of Jesus, rise up and walk.” It wasn’t their own power that caused the man to walk again. It was the authority given them through Jesus.
You have strength
You can stand against Satan and all his strategies against you! (Ephesians 6: 11) When you put on the armor of God, you step into the authority you’ve been given. You can withstand whatever the enemy would try to throw at you!
You have wisdom
1 Corinthians 1: 24 says, “But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God.” You will be given wisdom along with authority in Christ. As a result, you will be able to have discernment and know through the Holy Spirit, what God is calling you to do in every circumstance.
When I was first studying the Bible, I highlighted passages using multicolored highlighters. For instance, purple indicated God’s divinity and holiness, yellow was for the Holy Spirit, pink was for God’s love, and I used green to highlight passages that required some action on my part. After I’d studied the bible for a few years, I was surprised by how much I’d highlighted in green (action)!
We know that our salvation is a gift that we can’t achieve for ourselves; it comes from God through Jesus. But there are certain actions we must take as believers. The first of those actions is to acknowledge our sinful nature, repent and ask Jesus to save us! The next actions we must take are to read scripture and let God teach us and transform us. Then he will send us out to share the Gospel and walk in the authority of Jesus Christ!
Paula Aiton is a member of Koinonia Church and a freelance writer, musician and artist. Her blog, God’s Glory Girl, can be found at godsglorygirl.com
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