Made For Glory
The more you yield to the Spirit of God, the more effective you’ll be in praying and in answers to prayer.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again radio friends, how in the world are you? You doing Alright today? Well, I trust so, bless your heart. Nice to be back with you, it’s your good friend, Bob Cook, as if you didn’t know. Well, I can’t help the kind of voice I have, but it certainly serves as a trade mark, doesn’t it? People walk up to me and say, “I know you, you’re Bob Cook.” [chuckle] Well, thank God for the chance to be alive and share the Word of God. I tell you, it’s the nicest thing God has done for me, is to let me share with you day by day from His Word.
We’re in Ephesians chapter three, and we’ve come down the last phrase in the 20th verse, “Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh within us.” I referred to that concept of power, and it turns out that that is the Holy Spirit of God. You recall that? The Holy Spirit of God, “not by might nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.” There’s where you come in at, the power.
“I’m full of power by the spirit of the Lord,” said Micah. Zechariah, I just quoted him. “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit saith the Lord of Hosts.” Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit unto Galilee. Our Savior himself said to the disciples, “Ye shall receive power after the Holy Ghost has come upon you, and ye shall be witnesses unto me. With great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection and great grace was upon them all.” Power.
Now he says, “According to the power that worketh in us.” How does the Holy Spirit work in your life so as to manifest the power of God? Well, first of all, it comes about when you make the Lord Jesus Christ Lord and Savior by faith in your own life.” As many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God, if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.” “What know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, which ye have of God.” The Holy Spirit comes to dwell in your body, and in your life, when you trust the Lord Jesus Christ as your savior.
Now, if you know that you’re saved, you can also know that the Holy Spirit of God is dwelling within you. You don’t have to pray that God will give you His Spirit, because you have Him. This wonderful third person of the Godhead dwells in you to manifest Christ every moment of every day because you’ve trusted Christ as your Savior. You follow that, that far? That being so, what then is the differential? Some people seem to have effectiveness and other people, there’s nothing going on but the rent. What makes the difference? He said, “According to the power that worketh in us.” How much is God’s power working in you? That’s the question, isn’t it? That’s the question, how much is God’s power working in you? Well, where does that begin? I say it begins at salvation, at conversion, when you open your heart by faith to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit of God comes in to dwell. Then what? You have the privilege, not to say duty, it’s a command in Ephesians 5:18, but the duty and the privilege of opening your whole life by faith to the blessed Spirit of God. Now, this may indeed involve a bit of or a lot of emotion, or it may not. I’ve told you different stories of believers who opened their hearts by faith to the Holy Spirit of God.
In some cases they were overwhelmed, in other cases it was very calm. Charles G. Finney describes his experience, he said it was like wave upon wave of liquid love. Biographers of DL Moody tell of the fact that God’s spirit entered into the fullness of Moody’s life, on one occasion where he said, “I can’t hold anymore, Lord, you have to hold up.” So there may be a great deal of emotion or a little or numb. The emotional content, I want this to be clear in our minds, the emotional content of your spiritual experience depends on two things, one, the way you’re built, and two, what God wants to do with you. But the fact, the fact is what you’re after. The fact is that God, by His Holy Spirit wants to enter into every area of your life. And you allow Him thus to do this by faith, just as you did receive the Lord Jesus by faith.
So Paul says in Ephesians 5:18, “Be not drunk with wine wherein is excess, but be filled.” And Greek scholars have pointed out that that’s a linear use of the language, which means “be ye being filled.” Keep on being filled with the Holy Spirit. God wants continually to fill your life with Himself, and you by faith can let Him in to the different…like OJ Smith used to say, rooms, the different rooms in your heart house by faith, you let him in, according to the power that worketh in us.
I’ve had a few experiences in my life where I came to a point of spiritual dryness, and I had to seek God and confess my weaknesses and shortcomings and sins and when I did, and I opened my heart by faith to the Holy Spirit’s control in those areas where I’d either been messing things up or disobeying God, or just whatever. When by faith I opened those areas of my life to the blessed Spirit of God, I was immediately more effective in my ministry. Now, I know that as a matter of actual historical fact in my own life. This I think is what Paul is getting at here in Ephesians three. He says, “According,” and he uses the little Greek word kata, which means right straight down along the line of, there isn’t any variation here. The more the Holy Spirit works in you, the more effective you’ll be in your praying and in the answers to your prayers. According to the power that worketh in us, and so by faith, you invite the Spirit of God into the need areas of your life.
And he produces there, then, Galatians 5:22-23, he produces the what we call the fruit of the Spirit, the result of the Holy Spirit being in control. And these are concepts that are not package-able but they’re very real and they’ll be still real in eternity: love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, and meekness and temperance. See, the power that worketh in us. By faith you trust Christ as savior, that brings the Spirit of God to dwell in your life. By faith you open every room in your heart house and in your life, relationships, to the Holy Spirit and let Him start to work. And as a result, the proportion of divine power in your praying, and as a result, in the answers to your prayer, is increased. The more you yield to the Spirit of God, the more effective you’ll be in praying, and in answers to prayer. Now, that’s the logic of that 20th verse. Do you follow that? Well, if you do, beloved, put it to work in your own heart, please do, because it works and it will bless you and bless you and bless you.
Now, it says, “Unto Him.” In verse 20 it says, “Unto Him,” and then you have all of this supplementary phrasing and Paul comes back again now, “Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end, amen.” The main purpose of your praying and the main purpose of God’s answering is to give glory to the Lord Jesus that will last eternally.
Now, if you take that concept and bring it over into the area of praying that God will give you enough money to pay the rent, how can that have any eternal value, you ask? And all I can answer is that when you’re redeemed by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, every part of your life becomes part of the pattern of God’s eternal plan. God’s eternal plan. “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, thoughts of good and not of evil to give you a desired end. The steps of a good man are ordered of the Lord, and He delighteth in his way,” said the Psalmist in the 37th psalm. “In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.” God puts you into His eternal plan when you trust the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and when you open your life to the control of the Holy Spirit of God. The real reason is that he wants the Lord Jesus to get the glory. A million years from now on the corner of Hallelujah Street and Glory Avenue, you’ll be talking to one of the saints and you’ll say, “You remember that day when we were broke and our organization was just about to go down, and we cried out to God and prayed and He answered our prayer, Hallelujah. Remember that? Praise the Lord.” A million years from now, Jesus will be getting the glory for something that was quite tangible and quite mundane, as real as next month’s rent. But Jesus will get the glory a million years from now because your memory will still be functioning. This is the point of that verse.
Let God work in your life now, so that Jesus can get the glory throughout all eternity, for what God does in your life right now. Isn’t that good? Well, put it to work in your own life, and I know that you’ll enjoy it.
Well, we come then into the fourth chapter of Ephesians. He said, “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you, that you walk worthy of the vocation where with ye are called.” God’s calling, the Christian calling, you’ve been called. It says, “This is a vocation.” Some wag has said it’s a vocation, not a vacation, and there is a difference, isn’t there? Yes, indeed. “The vocation wherewith ye are called.” Now what is God calling us to do? “In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” The calling of Christ, what does he have in mind? Well, Lord Jesus called His disciples, it’ll start there. The Lord Jesus called His disciples, He said, “Come ye after me and I will make you to become fishers of men.” You remember that? “I will make you to become fishers of men.” God wants to make something of you. He wants to make something of you that brings honor and glory to Him.
Have you thought over that concept? It may jar you a little if you ask this question. Over the past 10 years, what has God been making out of me? Have I given Him the chance to make anything out of my life? He said, “I will make you to become fishers of men.” Has God made me a better soul winner? Has God made me a better witness? Has God made me a better wife, or husband, or son, or daughter? Has God made me a better boss or employee? What has God been making of my life? You’re called to the creatorship of the Lord Jesus. You’re a new creation, that’s part of His calling. “I will make you.” You think about, that will you? We’ll come back to this the next time we get together.
Father God, oh, may we be an honor and a credit to the Lord Jesus Christ, the one whose name we bear. We pray in His name, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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