BEFORE JESUS ascended into Heaven, He said to His disciples, "Behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high" (Luke 24:49). The word endued means "to sink into; to put on; to clothe oneself."
We see in Acts 1:8 that we "shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon [us]." This verse is not talking about the Holy Spirit residing in us, but about the Holy Spirit coming upon us.
When we are born again, the Spirit of God comes into us in a measure. But there is another work of the Spirit of God. It's called the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. The word baptism means "to be fully immersed in." The idea here is that we are fully clothed with the power of God. OUR HEAVENLY FATHER NEVER INTENDED HIS CHILDREN TO LIVE AND OPERATE "NAKED"—THAT IS, WITHOUT THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
What Kind of Clothes Are You Wearing?
Clothing identifies people. Police officers and firemen wear uniforms. We know who they are by their clothing. In hospitals we can generally tell the difference between doctors, nurses, and technicians by the hospital scrubs they wear. Men and women in the military also wear uniforms. Their clothing identifies which branch of the military they serve in.
Are you clothed with the spiritual clothing God has provided for you? Think about it. We don't go out in public undressed! In the same way, it's not right to go out without our spiritual clothing. That is, without putting on Christ (Gal. 3:27), without putting on the armor of light (Rom. 13:12), and without being endued with God's power (Luke 24:49).
In Ephesians 6:10–18, the Apostle Paul tells us to put on the armor of God. Verse 11 says that we'll "be able to stand against the wiles of the devil" when we do this. Another thing that happens when we're clothed in God's armor is that the devil can't tell the difference between God and us!
This heavenly power is for all born-again Christians. It's not limited to those who are called to full-time ministry. You don't have to stand behind a pulpit to be anointed. You just have to be baptized in the Holy Spirit.
Get Swallowed Up in God's Clothes
Remember, endued means "to sink into." When we're endued, we "sink into" the power of God. We "sink into" being a new creature in Christ who is created in righteousness and true holiness.
When we're fully clothed with the Holy Spirit and walking in the power of God, we're engulfed in God. Sickness and disease can't stand in our presence because it can't stand in God's presence.
Acts 10:38 says, "How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him." The same power that was on Jesus is on us!
Being clothed from on high equips us to share the Gospel with a lost and dying world. It also equips us to minister healing and deliverance to those who need it.
In these last days before Jesus returns, I believe we're going to see a greater demonstration of the power of God. Ordinary Christians clothed in that power will minister on crowded city streets, on highways and byways, in grocery stores, and on their jobs!
We confess many things about who we are in Christ, and that's good. We need to do that. But let's also start saying, "The power of God is on me. I'm clothed with God's power." And then let's boldly minister to those around us in that power!
[Editor's Note: Tad Gregurich is Dean of Rhema Bible Training College.]