Where does the power come from? Today, power is for sale. It comes in the form of liquid that is measured in barrels pumped. Natural Gas is sold in volumes of cubic square feet. Electricity is bought and sold in the energy market and bonds are bought as futures on the commodity exchange. With the flick of a switch our lives literally "light up," and we suddenly become more powerful. How much power do we need and what do we need all this power for anyway?
In the book of Acts two Simons stood face to face in the middle of a power gird. Simon Peter looked into the face of Simon the Sorcerer. Peter was filled with the promised power of God that came on Pentecost. Peter was a spokesman for Jesus Christ, the Light of the world. Simon the Sorcerer wanted power. As with all evil men, it did not matter to him where the power came from (Acts 8:9) or what was the source. He was a Sorcerer. He just wanted to be powerful.
He witnessed the power of the Holy Ghost as Apostles "laid hands" on people and miracles illuminated darkness. Broken limbs and lives were suddenly energized with newness of life. It seemed that God was extending some a kind of "power grid," across the earth in the first century and the Apostles were linemen laying spiritual cable. The Sorcerer wanted in. He tried to purchase some from Peter saying, "Give me also this power…." The powerful of this world do not care where the power comes from. There is power from oil, from money, from politics, from religion, and every day it is bought and sold. God’s power is not for sale. "Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money."
The church needs to be careful about where it gets her power. The Amish of Pennsylvania cannot get God’s power by cutting lines any more than Thomas Edison can get it by stringing them. While I am not suggesting that Edison was evil, or that we should all give up the "night life," (although one might wonder if anything good happens on Broadway after dark) we would do well to reconsider what real power is for and what makes life worth living.
Jesus Christ alone has power to forgive sins (Mk. 2:10). Jesus Christ alone has the power to lay down life and take it up again (Jn. 10:18). Jesus Christ alone has power to create and power to hold everything together (Col. 1:16-17). It is in trusting Jesus Christ, and Him alone, that anyone can discover the true transformer and power of God. The Bible tells the story of one poor powerless woman who once reached out and touched the hem of Christ’s garment. Suddenly the power of "good" rushed out of Jesus and filled her. This priceless power is still within reach of all who touch it in faith. The power of God is the power of good. "To as many as receive Him, to them gave He the power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on His name." (Jn. 1:12).