Pentecostal Sermons and Bible Studies by Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ
The Greatest Power in the World

Summary:  I’ve stood just a few feet away from the thunderous power of Niagara Falls. I’ve talked with people who lived through the Great Alaska Earthquake (9.2 on the Richter scale). I’ve been in a thrilling, max-performance takeoff in a U.S. Air Force C-141 Starlifter. But none of these match what we’ll look at today. That is, the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We’ll focus on two Scripture portions, so let’s read those right at the outset.

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Matthew 1:18-25, NIV  This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary … was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit…. [20] An angel of the Lord appeared to [Joseph] in a dream and said,… what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”) … [25] She gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

Romans 1:1-4, 15-16, NASB  Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, which He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures, concerning His Son, who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh, who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord … [15] So, for my part, I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome. For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

“the gospel … it is the power of God”! Power over sin, over sickness, over Satan, over depression, over addictions, and over a host of other enemies of the prosperity of our soul.
 
• What does “the gospel” mean? It means good news, spelled out clearly by the apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 15:1-4): “Now brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you … [3] that Christ died for our sins … [4] that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.” Now that is good news! In very brief form, the gospel is the good news of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ for our “great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3, KJV).
 
• There is immeasurable power in the gospel. It tells us of the multi-faceted salvation, healing, deliverance, and much more that Jesus Christ secured for us through His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension back to heaven. Those who understand this all-encompassing power of the gospel have sometimes called it the "full gospel," in recognition of its power to bless every area of our lives.
 
• Now let’s take a look at why this gospel is such good news, and why therefore gospel preaching is so vitally needed.

Matthew 1:18  What is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.
Romans 1:4
  He was declared the Son of God with power.

• The Divine Conceiver (the Holy Spirit) produced a divine child, Jesus the Son of God, in the womb of the virgin woman Mary.
 
• When you ponder the gospel of Christ, remember that you are looking at Deity in Jesus. Truly man through his human mother, and also truly God as the Son of God the Father. Let’s look at this more closely.

Matthew 1:21  She will give birth to a son.
Romans 1:3
  [Jesus] was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh.

• Jesus had a human birth, to a human mother (Mary), who herself was in the lineage of King David.
 
• So on the one hand Jesus has a human nature and, although He remained totally sinless, He can identify closely with what we humans go through in this life on earth. He lived, rejoiced, wept, suffered, triumphed, was tested — all these things and more Jesus experienced on earth, as we do. So He understands us.

Matthew 1:23  They will call him Immanuel (which means “God with us”).
Romans 1:15-16
  I am eager to preach the gospel to you … for it is the power of God…

• The child born to the virgin Mary was and is more than merely a man. He is “God with us.” Full Deity! And not just far away in heaven, but “God with us”!
 
• Like the apostle Paul, we should be eager to share with others the limitless power of having “God with us” in your life personally as your Lord and your Savior. The gospel is not simply a set of intellectual beliefs. No, it is much more. It is the revelation that the divine-and-human Son of God, Jesus Christ, has chosen to be “with us” and to provide powerfully to us the fullness of His salvation.

Matthew 1:21  Give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.
Romans 1:16
  The gospel … is the power of God for salvation…

• Power for salvation! Power to cancel Hell’s grip on us and replace it with Heaven.
 
• Power to remove the guilt and debt of sin that we carry.
 
• Power to forgive you and make you a child of God!

In closing, let’s review this great power of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

• It is “the gospel of our Lord Jesus (2 Thessalonians 1:8). It is “the gospel of the glory of Christ(2 Corinthians 4:4).
 
• This gospel, this Good News, is the power of God turned loose on this earth!
 
• Jesus, born in a stable, is the power of God for salvation.
 
• Jesus is the power of God for the healing of sick bodies.
 
• Jesus is the power of God for deliverance from the oppression of the devil.
 
• Conceived by the Holy Spirit, Jesus himself is the might baptizer in the Holy Spirit, thereby releasing that divine power to function in your life and ministry.
 
• Jesus, who came to earth the first time in poverty and humility, will come again a second time in glory and great victory.

So we rightly honor Jesus as savior, healer, deliverer, baptizer in the Holy Spirit, the coming King of Kings, and much more! As the apostle Paul said — and may this motivate us too — “That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel … because it is the power of God.”

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©2014, James H. Feeney.
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Pentecostal Sermons and Bible Studies
by Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.