The Spirit of Grace (continued)
1. The Spirit of Power (continued)
Now you may even feel the darkness in a traditionally Christian world or realm. I will never forget my first visit to the city of Rome; and I wanted to see the various things. I went to the Colosseum to see the place where the Christians were flung to the lions. I went to this place and that place and then I went into one of the most well-known and prominent churches in the world, and, you know, I just could not stay. After a very short time, I had to go out. I felt physically ill, a sense of awful death had come upon me physically, and I was glad to get out of the place. It was an atmosphere of death and darkness to the spirit. But, if that is true there, you go to other parts of the world and you can cut the darkness. It is so strong. It is a terrible thing!
When the Spirit of God as the Spirit of Light entered into this darkness which was over the face of the earth, the Spirit met an awful power, it was dealing with an awful power, and it called for the exercise of the Infinite Power of God to break that reign of darkness. It called for the Divine Fiat, "Let there be light" - the Word of His Power. Oh, how our hearts cry and crave for more of the knowledge of That Power in His Word. If the smallest percentage of all our speaking had the real Power of God in it, something would happen. It would be a Fiat, an act of God to speak. That is why the Lord Jesus is called "the Word," because where He comes as the Word something happens, something happens! The devil is exposed, as when He was here and the evil spirit cried out, "I know Thee Who Thou art, the Holy One of God" (Mark 1:23-24). Hell felt the impact of the Word. Men, sinful men, cried out in His Presence like that. But the point is, darkness is a terrible power.
The disruption in our humanity is a terribly strong thing. We are every day, almost every moment of our lives, up against that breakup in the humanity which is ours, or the breakdown of it, the disorder of it, the disintegration of it, the disruption of it. We know that our humanity is a broken down thing. We are all the time striving to pick it up and build it up and hold it up. We know it is a power, it is a terrible power - the disorder and chaos in ourselves. The Spirit of God came of His Own accord as the Spirit of Power to deal with what no other power in this universe could deal with; He came to change it. And that is where we are in the new creation; it is what the Spirit of God has undertaken to do with us. And surely there are many in this place tonight who would echo the words of the apostle, "Kept by the power of God" (1 Peter 1:5). You know you would not be a Christian today, you would not be going on with the Lord, you would not be standing true to the Lord, but for the keeping Power of God. In a world like this, there is such a power against what is the Lord's.
Well, this is the Spirit of Grace, you see, that has come to take it over. The Holy Spirit as the Spirit of Grace is the custodian of the Divine Perfection. The Spirit of Grace has taken responsibility for realizing God's End. Oh, thank God for that! Knowing ourselves and the awful forces that there are in our nature; knowing the world, or something of it, and the awful forces that there are in this world; and knowing the devil and something of his inimical hatred and opposition to what is of God, to anything that is of God, we certainly have to say, "Well, the only possibility is if God Almighty does it, if God sees to it." And that is the Spirit of Grace that has come to take up God's End and to do it. It is the free action of the Holy Spirit.
(continued with # 9)