Power of Christ made perfect in our weakness

Power of Christ
Preached by Apostle Aje Pelser, Easter Weekend
Harvester Reformational Church, Cape Town

When Apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthian church about a messenger of Satan that sent against him, because of his multiple revelations of Christ, he was also explaining the pathways to supernatural power. The strength of Christ made perfect in weakness is a pathway few have dared to travel, yet for those who have been brave enough to endure extreme pressures for the sake of the Gospel, his grace truly is sufficient.

2 Corinthians 12: 7-10
‘And with respect to the superabundance of revelations, in order that I may not be exalted overmuch, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to the end that he might constantly maltreat me lest I be exalted overmuch.
Concerning this three times I begged the Lord that he might depart from me. And He said to me, and His declaration still stands, “My grace is enough for you, for power is moment by moment coming to its full energy and complete operation in the sphere of weakness.”
Therefore, most gladly will I the rather boast in my weaknesses in order that the power of the Christ [like the Shekinah Glory in the Holy of Holies of the Tent of Meeting] may take up its residence in me [working within me and giving me help]. Wherefore I am well content in weaknesses, in insults, in necessities, in persecutions, and in circumstances under which I am subject to extreme pressure on behalf of Christ, for when I am weak, then I am filled with ability and power.’

Have you ever wondered why it is so difficult for true apostles? Why we face so many hardships and betrayals? Why the church takes so long to be built? Why the devil will try anything to stop a mission? Every time we reach a new region with the Gospel, every time a new family comes to Christ in church, there is a battle in the spirit and there is fierce opposition. But what the devil did not count on, what he doesn’t seem to understand, is that the more we are persecuted and insulted, oppressed and repressed, the more we deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow Jesus!
God told me the other day when I was facing circumstances of severe pressure: “God who did not spare His son..”
Rom 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
Rom 8:32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?
Rom 8:33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.

When we are strong, God waits to act on our behalf. When we empty ourselves of all our opinions and we let go of all our plans and schemes, God’s grace kicks in!

I want to share some or pathways that lead to supernatural power in our ministry.
1. The pathway of Revelations of Jesus and His Church.
2. The pathway of handling spiritual opposition.
3. The pathway of perspective in prayer.
4. The pathway of submitting to divine declarations.
5. The pathway of sufficient grace.
6. The pathway of progression in power.
7. The pathway of understanding the full operation of His power.
8. The pathway in the sphere of weakness.
9. The pathway to resident Glory.
10. The pathway of contentment through suffering.
11. The pathway of extreme pressure.
12. The pathway of full ability and power.

1. The pathway of Revelations of Jesus and His Church.
When apostles are given the keys to unlock the mysteries of the kingdom, all hell tries to prevent them from sharing it with the world. Apostle Paul understood that righteousness was for all nations, but his own countrymen chased him from nation to nation to prevent him from spreading the good news.
Act 13:43 Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God.
Act 13:44 On the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God.
Act 13:45 But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy; and contradicting and blaspheming, they opposed the things spoken by Paul.

2. The pathway of handling spiritual opposition.
It is the hardest thing in ministry to realize that people, for whom you have prayed and laid down your life, can turn on you at any time, taken captive by the devil to do his will. Jesus had to deal with betrayal and so do we. It is part of the Christian’s cross. We bare it gladly but it hurts every time because we love people. But in God’s wisdom, He allows it, so that we can decrease and Christ can increase! John the Baptist prepared the way for Jesus in his life and handled much opposition. He was eventually beheaded, but his pathway of baptism of repentance pointed the way to Jesus the Messiah. John felt like his life was a failure at the end and even asked his disciples to check if Jesus was the Messiah, because the evidence of his conditions suggested otherwise. But Jesus was not offended and answered as follows:
Luk 7:20 When the men had come to Him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to You, saying, ‘Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?’ ”
Luk 7:21 And that very hour He cured many of infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many blind He gave sight.
Luk 7:22 Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them.
Luk 7:23 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”

3. The pathway of perspective in prayer.
Apostle Paul made petitions to God three times to remove this buffer to his ministry. You need ot be honest in prayer so that perspective can come. While you are prancing around like a show pony I prayer, the real issues don’t get dealt with at all. You might feel a bit of soulish confidence because of the sound of your own voice, but the gut wrenching truth is not surfaced. When you get real with God, God gets real with you and for me that is the essence of prayer.
“Lord I can’t handle this anymore. If you don’t do something about it I don’t know what I’ll do.” To which God will reply: “Don’t worry my grace is sufficient for you, my strength is made perfect in your weakness.”

4. The pathway of submitting to divine declarations.
When God speaks we should write it down and repeat it to ourselves in prayers and confessions until it sticks in our brains as an established truth. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. Make a poster where you can see it. Make a habit of saying things God speaks to you out loud so your ears and everybody around you can hear it. Believe your beliefs and doubt your doubts.
Submit to His declarations. For instance, we received a word from a Prophet friend of ours in Pretoria when Apostle Andre was facing death from poisoning. We had so many bills to pay and the devil was attacking our building process, our ministry and physically. The word was simple and came in the form of a vision: “I see a series of booms being lifted up as you go, and every boom says: ‘Paid in full.’“ We have held onto that like you won’t believe! I take pictures of traffic booms and remind myself about the word every day! The Lord has delivered several giants into our hands over the last 3 years. Those who walk with us in prayer understand.

5. The pathway of sufficient grace.
The Lord Himself is enough for you. His presence is our Reward and He is our Shield. This is an Abrahamic promise:
Gen 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”
Abram as a name meant “exalted father’ which was ironic seeing as though he struggled to have children. God changed Abram’s name to Abraham, the ‘h’ being a part of God’s name ‘Elohim’ which was inserted into his lifeless and fruitless legacy. After that Abraham become Abraham = “father of a multitude” or “chief of multitude”
1) friend of God and founder of Hebrew nation via God’s elective covenant
(BDB H85)

6. The pathway to progression in power.
You need to trust God moment by moment. Don’t live in the past and don’t worry about the future. It’s like trusting God for your daily bread. Believe God is with you now and trust Him to release His power in your situation. He is faithful and has proved Himself to you over and over again. Draw from that as substance but be in the ‘now’ of His power. Timing is a key to releasing His power in your life. So often, the timing of the Lord has been a sign that followed us everywhere we go. It works in healings and miracles and words of knowledge, when we feel we should pray for a person across the world and God raise him from the dead in the balance, like Simon Mahone in Zambia. God will make you think about someone and then you see them, or they call you and you pray for them. We live in supernatural timing, and realize afterwards that if we did not hear from God in the present, the next sequence of events would not have taken place.
Energy levels in the Spirit are an interesting concept. When I have spiritual energy to do something, it is like a boost in faith and power to get something done quickly. This energizing force is the power of Christ within the hope of glory. It is resident in you, but it gets stirred up when the Spirit leads.

7. The pathway of understanding the full and complete operation of His power.
There is a complete operating system that you have to download in prayer and living a fasted life. Fasting for me is more than skipping meals, it is a full inclusion of Isaiah 58. We have a song about it so we can remember it! Do yourself a favour and pray through Isaiah 58.
The Holy Spirit gives you opportunities to experiment with his powerful operating systems of gifts. The flow of God’s power is like a current that makes things easier than when you try to do it in your own strength.

8. The pathway in the sphere of weakness.
Here is what very preachers preach: the complete operation of God’s power is found in the sphere of personal weakness and dependency on Christ within – completely! Until you can admit your weakness, the power of God will not flow completely through you.
It is as simple as acknowledging: “Ok, Lord Jesus, without You I can nothing.”
Are you ready to navigate through the spheres of your own weakness, failures and inefficiencies? Are you ready to deny yourself, take up your cross and really follow Jesus’ pathway?
Jesus’ weakest and most embarrassing moment was when he was dying, naked and alone on the cross. When I drew a picture of Jesus the other day, the revelation hit me. A cross is embarrassing to the flesh. It is not a triumph in your eyes.
But when Jesus dropped his last blood on the ground for us, it rippled out through eternity and sent a shockwave through death and hell releasing the prisoners forever!

9. The pathway to resident Glory.
The temple veil that tore from top to bottom opened the way for all mankind to have a relationship with God, like Moses and the High Priests who served in the Holy of Holies.
2Co 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.
2Co 4:17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,

10. The pathway of contentment through suffering.
Paul said that he had learnt in all states to be content. That Godliness with contentment was great gain. Do you think he knew what he was talking about?
Suffering tempers the inner steal in your spiritual spine. Christians who avoid suffering are never going to have a revelation of His strength made perfect in weakness. Preachers who only preach prosperity with no suffering and cross, keep people from a great weight of glory in their lives.
Paul speaks about weaknesses; insults; necessities; persecutions; and circumstances under which he was subjected to extreme pressure on behalf of Christ.

11. The pathway of extreme pressure.
Apostolic Orange! Those who know us understand that only pressure can release the inner juice of anointing and power. When an orange has been squeezed properly there is nothing left of it, but the juice nourishes and quenches the thirst of those that need it so dearly.
We understand the concept of a winepress here in the vineyards of Cape Town.
The good news is that the vintage will be excellent and nations will celebrate the amazing tastes that come from you time of pressure. We have amazing resources and revelation, teachings about every aspect of Christian living that were birthed under pressure!
Stop being scared of a little pressure! Apostle Paul called all he went through a ‘light affliction.’
Make a decision to carry some weight in the church and stop trying to preserve your life. Those who lose their life for Jesus will find it.

12. The pathway of full ability and power.
You need a vacuum in order for it to be filled. It is the principle of substances flowing from a high to low pressure. Emptying ourselves prepares a vacuum to be filled with God’s Spirit.
Emptying yourself of your opinions pulls in God’s thoughts and revelations.
Emptying yourself of your own plans and ideas, lets in the divine strategies you need ot succeed.
Emptying yourself of your own abilities and efforts and talents, allows the Spirit of the Lord to take you to another level of ability and power. Breathe out the old rubbish and all you think you can do, not breathe in the power of Christ!