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Turning Up the Power

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Oh, God, I need more power! Please…please…please give me more power, LORD!

Have you ever prayed a prayer like that?

I have. In fact, some years ago I was praying along those lines, earnestly beseeching God to give me greater power to minister. It was a fine, very spiritual-sounding prayer. But The LORD interrupted me right in the middle of it.

‘Kenneth,’ He said, ‘where would I go to get you more power?’

The question stopped me cold.

‘No one has more power than I do,’ He continued. ‘And I’ve already filled you with My Spirit. I’ve put within you the same miraculous force that created heaven and earth, the same supernatural strength that raised Jesus from the dead. Where am I going to go to find something greater than that?’

The point was clear. As born-again, Holy Spirit-filled believers, you and I don’t need more power. We simply need to more fully release what we’ve already been given. We need to allow the Spirit of God within us to flow through us in greater measure.

If we’re not seeing miracles in our lives and ministries, it isn’t God’s fault. He isn’t the One who is limiting us. We are!

That may not sound to you like good news—but it is.

Here’s why. If you’re the one who is keeping a lid on the power of God in your life, then you’re the one who can take that lid off! You don’t have to sit around waiting for some super-anointed prophet to come to town and lay hands on you. You don’t have to wait for God to send an angel to hit you with his glory stick. You don’t have to wait for anything.

You can make a quality decision to increase the flow of God’s power in your life—starting today!

God Is Always On

“Now, Brother, I don’t believe we can just turn God’s power on at will.”

I don’t either. But thank God, we don’t have to! His power is always on! He turned it on and made it available to every one of us almost 2,000 years ago on the Day of Pentecost, and He hasn’t turned it off since. It’s me I turn on and off. God is always on!

He’s just waiting for us to get fully turned on to that power. He is waiting for us to get with the program and start doing the works that Jesus did, and even greater works (John 14:12).

The problem is, we’ve kept Him waiting for a long time. That’s because, despite what the Bible says, most Christians don’t actually think they could ever do what Jesus did. After all, He is the divine, firstborn Son of God, and He clearly had a greater measure of God’s power flowing through Him during His earthly ministry than any of us do.

It’s true. Jesus did operate in greater power than we do. But not for the reason most people think. His great anointing was not due to the fact that He is the Son of God. It couldn’t have been! For Philippians 2:7 says when Jesus came to earth, He stripped Himself of His divine privileges. He laid aside the rights of deity and ministered as a man.

What then was the secret of His astounding power?

You can find it in John 3:34: “For since He Whom God has sent speaks the words of God…God does not give Him His Spirit sparingly or by measure, but boundless is the gift God makes of His Spirit!” (AMP).

According to that verse, the reason Jesus was able to operate in unlimited power was because He spoke The WORDs of God.

He didn’t just speak God’s WORD when He was ministering. He didn’t just speak it when He was feeling spiritual. He didn’t stand in church and say, “Well, praise God. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but The LORD delivers him out of them all!”…and then walk outside and say to His disciples, “Boys, things are really looking bad. Judas is stealing our money. The religious leaders are trying to kill Me. I just don’t know if we’re going to make it.”

No, Jesus didn’t speak words of faith one moment and words of doubt the next. He always spoke God’s WORD: “As my Father hath taught me,” He said, “I speak these things” (John 8:28).

More Than a Black Leather Book

“I know The WORD is important,” you may say, “but I just can’t see how it can turn up the power of God in my life.”

That’s because you don’t understand what The WORD actually is. You think it’s just a black, leather book you wag to church on Sunday and then leave on the coffee table the rest of the week. But the truth is, God’s WORD isn’t a book. It has been recorded in a book, but The WORD itself is what God has said to us.

Set your traditional framework aside for a moment and look at it this way. If someone said to you, “Kenneth Copeland has given you his word,” how would you respond? Would you get all religious about it?

No, you’d want to know what I had said I would do. You’d also want to know if my word is any good. You’d want to know if I’m the kind of person who keeps my word or not.

Those are sensible questions. Why is it then, that so many Christians who claim to esteem God’s WORD have never asked them?

“Yes, amen, Brother,” they say, “we believe The WORD of God.” Yet they cannot tell you precisely what God has said He’ll do for them. And once they find out, they consider it presumptuous to expect Him to follow through. They seem to think that because God is God, He has the option of breaking His WORD if He wants to, without any reflection in any way upon His nature.

That is absurd. A person’s word is his bond. It is the measure of his character. If a man honors his word by keeping it, then he is an honorable man. If he dishonors his word by breaking it, he is a dishonorable man. Like it or not, everyone’s integrity—including God’s—is judged on the basis of whether or not he keeps his word.

No doubt, that statement would ruffle the feathers of a few religious folks. “Who do you think you are,” they’d say, “to set up a criteria by which to judge God?”

I didn’t set up that criteria! God did. He is the One who taught us to judge integrity on that basis. He invented the integrity of words. He set the standard.

God and His WORD are One, not because we say so, but because He said so. He has made it clear that we cannot separate Him from His WORD. Just as He never changes, His WORD never changes. They are both the same—yesterday, today and forever.

What’s more, God’s WORD is as powerful as He is.

That may sound shocking to you, but if you’ll stop and consider it a moment, you’ll realize it makes perfect sense. A word is always and only as powerful as the person who gave it.

For example, if Joe Smith, the grocer from down the block, promised you a job at General Motors Co., there wouldn’t be much power in that word because as well-meaning as Joe might be, he has no authority to back it up. If, however, the president of GM called and said you could have a job there, you could take his word to the bank because he has the power to cause that word to come to pass. His word in a letter would have the same power to get you the job as his word when he spoke it to you.

The WORD Came First

Since God is all-powerful, His WORD is all-powerful. He can and does back up everything He says.

Since He is the Creator, His WORD contains the power to create. You can see that truth borne out in the very first verses of the Bible: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light” (Genesis 1:1-3).

Notice that the Spirit of God was moving before God spoke, but nothing happened until God said. Creation did not take place until God released words of faith.

Everything in this material creation, everything you can see, touch, taste or smell came into existence as a result of The WORD of God. That means God’s WORD is the parent substance of all matter. Think of it! The paper this magazine is made of came from a tree that can be traced from tree to seed, to tree to seed, all the way back to God’s WORD, “Let it be.”

In light of that fact, do you think His WORD still has the power to change this natural, physical world? Do you think The WORD that created the dirt your physical body was made from has enough power to heal that body? Do you think The WORD that brought into being all the silver and gold, all the wealth of this entire earth, has enough power to supply you with the resources to pay your electric bill?

Of course!

God’s WORD is eternal. It is sovereign. It cannot be changed. (We tried to change it by saying it didn’t really mean what it said. But, thank God, it does mean what it says and there’s nothing we can do to alter that fact.) Psalm 119:89 says, “For ever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven.”

This material universe, on the other hand, is temporal. It can and does change. As Jesus said, “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away” (Mark 13:31).

If you take something that is unchangeable and use it to apply pressure to something that is changeable, it’s obvious which one of them will yield—the changeable one! Therefore, whenever you take The WORD of God and apply it in faith to this temporal realm, that realm must give in and conform to The WORD.

Jesus understood that truth. He lived His life by it. He had such faith in God’s WORD that when He spoke it, this material creation bowed its knee and obeyed Him. Demons fled. Diseases disappeared. Death gave up its grip. Bread multiplied. Winds stopped blowing. Waves ceased.

In fact, by the power of God’s WORD, Jesus was able to live and minister on this death-bound planet, and yet be completely free from all its bondages. Then, before He left, He told us how we could do the same thing.

He said, “If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31-32).

Most of us have given such a religious meaning to the word disciple that we’ve lost the impact of what Jesus said there. A disciple is simply someone who follows after or becomes like someone else. So Jesus was actually saying, “Continue in My WORD and you’ll be like Me. You’ll know The WORD (see John 17:17) and it will make you just as free as I am.”

Containers of Power

To understand how God’s WORD can have such a profound effect on your life, you must realize that words do more than convey information. They serve as containers of spiritual power. They have the ability to carry faith or fear, blessing or cursing, life or death (see Proverbs 18:21).

Men sometimes speak idle or empty words, but God never does. Every word He has ever spoken has been filled with faith, power and life. Hebrews 4:12 says His WORD is “quick,” (or alive) “and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit….”

In fact, God’s WORD actually contains within it the power to bring itself to pass. For example in Isaiah 55:11, He says, “My word…shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”

Every word God has ever spoken is backed by His faith, and is as full of power today as it was the moment He said it. So when you believe that WORD, and then your faith comes together with His faith, the power of that WORD is released, the Holy Spirit goes into action, and The WORD explodes into this natural realm and becomes a reality in your life!

That’s how you got born again. You heard or read God’s WORD, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Romans 10:9). You believed that WORD, spoke it in faith and the power of the Holy Spirit was released, transforming your dead, fallen spirit into a reborn spirit, re-created in the image of Jesus Himself.

My, what a miracle! You were snatched from the dominion of darkness and there was nothing the devil could do to stop it. The words of God did the same thing for you they did for Jesus when He was in the pit of hell. They demolished the devil’s power over you and raised you up together with The LORD Jesus to sit together in heavenly places with Him! (Ephesians 2:6.)

Turn the World Upside Down

Even though you were the one speaking The WORDs, they had the same power they would have had if Jesus Himself had spoken them. That’s because they are God’s words, and when spoken and acted upon in faith they always release His power!

Peter and John proved that the day they walked up to the lame man at the Beautiful gate in Acts 3. At the time, they only had a few words of the New Covenant. They just had the words Jesus spoke to them before He ascended:

“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mark 16:15-18).

But those were all the words they needed. When they believed and acted on those words, the Holy Spirit went into action for them just as He had for Jesus—and a miracle happened. When they opened their mouths and said, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk,” that lame man “leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God” (Acts 3:6-8).

They didn’t stop with that one miracle either. Peter and John and the rest of the early disciples took those first few WORDs of the New Covenant and turned the whole known world upside down! (Acts 17:6)

“Well, Brother Copeland, you know those men were apostles. That’s the reason they were anointed to do such miracles.”

No, it’s not! If that were the reason then Acts 19:20 would say, mightily grew the apostles and they prevailed. But it doesn’t say that. It says, “mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.” Those early apostles were anointed to do such miracles because they spoke and acted on The WORD of God. It was The WORD and the anointing released by that WORD that did the work.

Since The WORD never changes, we can be confident that it will prevail for us just as surely as it prevailed for Peter and John. It will prevail for us as surely as it prevailed for Jesus. It will prevail for us as powerfully as when God Himself said, “Let there be light!”

What are we waiting for?

We have the very power and Anointing of God Himself moving in our reborn spirits. We have The WORD of God at our fingertips. And the more we fill our heart with that WORD, the more we act on it and speak it out in faith, the more freely that anointing can function through us.

We have everything we need to turn up the power of God in our lives. We have everything we need to heal the sick, cast out devils, open blind eyes and raise the dead. We’re not waiting on God. He is waiting on us.

Glory to God, let’s not keep Him waiting any longer! Grab your Bible, take your stand on it and let’s go!

Timeless teaching by Kenneth Copeland originally published October 1995