And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
Jesus Christ was declared to be the Son of God with power. The Greek word for power in this instance is dunamis. This word means miracle working power, or the power you have when you have greater resources.
Sometimes people say it means dynamite power, because the word dynamite comes from dunamis. Well, firstly it can’t really mean that because no-one knew what dynamite was when Romans was penned and secondly, dynamite is a tiny amount of power compared to the dunamis power of God.
The dunamis power of God raised Jesus from the dead – dynamite destroys and pulls down and brings chaos, but dunamis resurrects, creates, defines and revitalises, and brings life and order and peace and joy.
According to the Scripture, that dunamis power declared Jesus to be the Son of God – the power declared it. Now this is where I think the Greek gets really interesting: the Greek word for declare is horizo, where we get the English word horizon. It means to mark out the boundaries of where something ends.
So, to translate and meditate this verse we find out that the power of God sets the limits of how much we can declare Jesus is the Son of God.
Many Christians are trying to declare that Jesus is the Son of God with no power at all. They don’t see the sick healed, they don’t see lives transformed, they don’t see the power of God released on the earth and they wonder why their message that Jesus is the Son of God is not received.
Listen – when you declare that Jesus is the Son of God with power you set a boundary. You put everything that does not have the dunamis power of God on one side of the boundary and your message that Jesus is the Son of God on the other side of the boundary.
You don’t need to know this teaching and that doctrine to show that you are right about Jesus being the Son of God and the Jehovah’s Witnesses are wrong. It is shown because you can lay hands on the sick and they cannot. There are no healings in their meetings, no miraculous life changes.
I once challenged the Jehovah’s Witnesses to produce someone who actually had had a dramatic deliverance from an addiction through their teachings. I have seen people delivered from heroin in an instant, and if their message was true then surely they must have too?
They went off and eventually brought an ex-addict to my house. He was now a Jehovah’s Witness. He told his testimony: how he was delivered from his drug addiction after being born again in the Pentecostal church but then got disillusioned with the Pentecostals and joined the witnesses. That was the best they could manage – someone who got free by the power of God, got offended and joined them. They are essentially a powerless club for those who have been offended in church – people don’t join them from the world, offended Christians join them. Ask any Jehovah’s Witness their testimony and if they are honest, I reckon 90% of them are offended Christians or offended church goers.
Muslims are the same. When TL Osborn went out to the mission field, he started preaching the Bible. Muslims said we have a book too, our book is as good as yours. TL couldn’t argue with them, though he tried. He went back to the States in defeat, not knowing how to argue or reason with the people that Jesus is Lord. While in the States he saw a miracle ministry for the first time and realized this is the key: if you declare Jesus to be the Son of God with power, then people will believe. Now TL Osborn has possibly seen more salvations through his preaching than anyone who has ever lived!
Some Christians say we don’t need this power any more. Listen: if GOD needed to declare Jesus was the Son of God with power, you need to declare it with power as well.
Always expect signs and wonders when you are declaring to people that Jesus is the Son of God. And you will always have signs and wonders: resurrection power flowing through you into all those you meet. Then people will listen when you tell them that Jesus is the Son of God because your message is backed up with the power of God.
Glory and freedom,