We need the power of the Gospel. In the book of Acts, power was not separate from the Gospel, it was part of it. In this sermon clip, Bill Johnson speaks from Acts and second Corinthians on the power of the Gospel to save and transform lives. We must not settle for good theology and wisdom alone, but be filled with the Holy Spirit that we may see cities and nations transformed by the power of the Gospel.

and when you go into a city like Corinth

you don’t need a philosophic message

you need a demonstration of the raw

power of God that separates people from

the torment that has kept them in


there seems to be a greater faith

for the return of Christ than there is

in the power of the Gospel

there’s a greater faith for the return

of Christ in in other words what I mean

by that is the faith is in

the return of Christ to come and fix


instead of him returning for something

that’s been fixed


the thought is that he he needs to come

to fix things instead of us seeing the

full effect of the power of the Gospel

and because of that

the hope is in Escape

instead of demonstration

and we have a sense of indebtedness we

have an obligation and that is to

display Gospel of power

and it may work for you it may not work

for you we all we’re going to do talk

about this throughout this morning

but the design of the Lord is is that

this gospel is the gospel of power it’s

the only kind of gospel there is

unfortunately in in the just the hour

that we live in

the church oftentimes creates buffets

where you get to choose chicken or beef

or pork string beans corn or whatever

you get to choose a gospel with great

power minimal power no power at all you

get to choose loud worship quiet worship

no worship you get you get all these


and none of it was designed by the

gospel itself

the gospel when it comes in one form

it’s the form that transforms the life

and I don’t I don’t think the the

problem would exist in this room at all

that we don’t believe in the

transformative power of the Gospel

that’s I mean you’re here because you

believe that

but I remember one Sunday night

a number of years ago we invited folks

forward that had any kind of an


and I remember which we’ve done many

times through the years but we had a

group of about 10 maybe 12 people right


and um and we prayed over them

corporately we didn’t uh we didn’t lay

hands on them this time sometimes we

Minister personally but this time no

it’s just a corporate prayer

and one of the guys came to me like six

months later he said

bill I don’t know if you know this do

you remember that night you prayed over

addictions I said yeah I said my friend

and I had both been heroin addicts for

over 20 years each

and instantly in that corporate prayer

they were completely set free have never

desired heroin again

we we believe that we know we know that

that’s the reality of the Gospel we know

that that’s absolutely true

unfortunately not as many who believe in

that Miracle of transformation of the

individual have the same confidence in

the transformation of a family

and yet according to scripture in the

Old Testament one lamb was sacrificed

per household it was always meant to be

families that were brought into the


and even where I can find people that

believe truly in the power of the Gospel

to transform a family

that’s not as many that believe in the

transformation of an entire neighborhood

there are some that will believe for

that one household to be changed but you

know maybe a few others but not actual

transformation and even though sometimes

I can find the person that believes for

the transformation of a neighborhood

it’s hard to find the one that believes

for an entire city

or a state

or a nation but it’s all the same gospel

it’s Gospel of power

the Apostle Paul one of certainly the

ultimate heroes in Scripture

he scares me

I think I’m going to walk up to him like

this in heaven

is is yes was so extreme

I love it

he in Acts chapter 17 he preached

at a place called Mars Hill it was known

as kind of the place where philosophers

gathered and they would exchange ideas

they would it was almost like it’s

almost like the weirder the better you

know they just invited everybody in with

a strange idea and they would just

listen and discuss and debate and do all

that stuff well Paul decided to go there

to preach and so he preached he preached

a a sermon that is actually studied

often in Bible schools and other places

where people are trained uh in in

preaching the gospel they they study the

sermon because it was so succinct it was

so abbreviated so brief and yet so


but strangely at the end of this message

on this profound place that needed

absolutely huge transformation there was

only a small handful of converts as a

result of this message

that’s chapter 17 that ends with that

story chapter 18 starts

with Paul’s journey to Corinth from Mars


I want you to turn did I tell you where

to turn in your Bibles open to First

Corinthians chapter 2.

if Paul is anything like every other

preacher I know

after they’ve done their best

they then review did I do it right or

not did I get it right could I have done

better and and there’s that some people

call it the Monday blues not I refused

refused to do Blues but but I but I get

it I understand so here’s here’s Paul

I’d like to suggest you it doesn’t say

this in the text I’m just guessing I’d

like to suggest to you that from Mars

Hill on his journey

to Corinth Corinth is


a city of perversion on steroids

I mean a part of their worship to false

gods is immorality they’ve got a

thousand prostitutes working in the


it’s it’s this place of extreme extreme


see what happens in Sin Sin starts as a

as something of the flesh

but when it’s repeated over and over

again it becomes a spiritual sin that’s

empowered by the demonic

it becomes supernaturally empowered

and in a city like this massive massive

Deliverance is needed

Paul knows it he’s going into the hell

hole with the gospel

and as he Journeys and I’d like to

suggest he’s reviewing

what happened on Mars Hill I’m sure he

felt good about what he shared because

it was truth

but there wasn’t the impact certainly

that he was hoping for

and he makes his way to Corinth

and this is what he tells him what he

writes after his visit in verse 1.

chapter 2 and I Brethren when I came to

you did not come with Excellence of

speech or wisdom declaring to you the

testimony of God

for I determined not to know anything

among you except Jesus Christ and him


I was with you in weakness in fear in

much trembling

and my speech and my preaching were not

with persuasive words of human wisdom

but in demonstration of the spirit and

of power

that your faith should not be in the

wisdom of men

but in the power of God

these five verses describe the frame of

mind of this great Apostle as he comes

into Corinth and he says he says

something that

goodness you wouldn’t want to promote in

any Bible school on the planet make sure

you go with fear trembling weakness you

know go go completely without confidence

that’s not what you’re looking for and

yet somehow going through this

experience of seeing the gospel of power

demonstrated with such

little power maybe maybe for this moment

is going to take a risk

he says I wanted to make sure that your

faith wasn’t in the wisdom of men now

listen carefully to me anytime you move

in the wisdom of God

it will be called the wisdom of men by

your hearers

in other words you will be credited with

what you just said

I don’t think that made sense all right

it was better than it than your response

when you function in the wisdom of God

people applaud you for your wisdom

it’s it’s the it’s the challenging part

of navigating bringing the gospel

you lay hands on the sick you

automatically get a credit get credited

part of it’s okay because it it was your

obedience it was your faith

but it’s never independent of the source

I don’t know that it does any good to

say it wasn’t me it was Jesus I’m not

I’m not sure

I’m not sure that works I keep teasing

you with the story of

somebody comes to me or I come to them I

say it’s a beautiful song you’re saying

and they say it wasn’t me it was Jesus

and I’m thinking it wasn’t that good I

mean if it was I’m sure if Jesus was

singing that song it would have been

really good


so you you do pick up credit if you will

probably the best illustration strange

as it may seem to you is when the

ointment was carried into the room

and the woman broke the vial the


and poured this ointment all over Jesus


from her point of view it was a gift to

him entirely

but she walked out of the room smelling

just like he did

everything that we give to him


splashes on us as she walked wiped this

this ointment in with her hair you know

into his feet and stuff and she walked

out of the room smelling like him so

there’s something about this this

cooperation with with God in the

ministry of the Gospel that it benefits

us too

and and that’s not to be denied

but wow

there’s this tender moment where you


I’m a carrier not a source

I said yes he’s honored yes

but at the end of the day it’s entirely

by grace

you know people will say oh you know you

did a good job with this you know

raising kids or whatever it might be you

did good good job yep I know and at the

end of the day it was entirely the grace

of God there there’s there’s not a not

an alphabet that originated with me from

me that would be of any uh Eternal


back to the story here

what Paul says here in verse 5 that your

faith should not be in the wisdom of men

but in the power of God if it were not

recorded in Scripture that actually

today would be called heresy

no one today in their right mind

with the heresy Hunters that are


I Know Who You Are


no one preaching the gospel today would

say I want your faith to be in the power

of God we would say I want your faith to

be in the Lord Jesus Christ

I want your faith to be in the Gospel of


but see in this day there is no

difference between the Gospel of Jesus

and the power of God

see today it’s compartmentalized it’s uh

it’s the buffet

you get to choose this choose that

but the gospel only came in one way

and when you go into a city like Corinth

you don’t need a philosophic message

you need a demonstration of the raw

power of God this separates people from

the torment that has kept them in


I love this part of the story so much

because Paul decided

I don’t know I I don’t think this is the

right way to put it but work with me

not to dumb down the gospel because

we’re supposed to be a people of

intelligence we’re supposed to answer

hard questions we’re supposed to display

the wisdom of God we’re supposed to

bring solutions to dilemmas and Earthly

crises Etc we’re supposed to be a part

of the team on the planet that actually

serves Humanity in that way that’s part

of of who we are and yet somehow he was

able to make a choice

to come in lower than normal

these are my terms not his

perhaps to recover from the lack of

breakthrough in the last place and

here’s here’s the great mystery I want

to read this for you it’s out of second

Corinthians if you’re writing notes

write this reference second Corinthians

12 verse 9.

you’ll recognize the first part of the


he said to me my grace is sufficient for

you for my strength is made perfect in


therefore most gladly I will rather

boast in my infirmities that the power

of God May rest upon me