In the New Covenant, particularly in the writings of Luke, we repeatedly find the double expression “spirit and power.”
John the Baptist was to come in the “spirit and power of Elijah” (Luke 1:17)
Miriam (Mary), the mother of Yeshua, was to conceive because “the Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Highest will overshadow you” (Luke 1:35)
The disciples were to receive “power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you“(Acts 1:8).
The Spirit and the power are linked together but they are not the same. The Spirit is a person, the power is a thing. The Holy Spirit is God; the power is energy. We can use the power of God, but we cannot use the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God directs us, leads us, and teaches us. The power is put into operation by our faith. We submit to the Spirit of God; the power submits to us.
What is the difference between a person and a thing? An electrician is a person; electricity is a thing. When the electrician comes to your house, he connects the electricity. You invite the electrician in and treat him with courtesy. Then you use the electricity according to the instructions.
When Yeshua was immersed in water, the Spirit of God came upon Him in the form of a dove (Luke 3:21). There is no mention of the power of God. Then the Holy Spirit led Yeshua into the desert for a test of holiness by being tempted of the devil (Luke 4:1). Again there is no mention of the power. However, after the temptations were finished, Yeshua returned “in the power of the Spirit to Galilee” (Luke 4:14).
Yeshua received the Holy Spirit by passing through the waters of repentance, forgiveness, and submission. There was no other requirement or test. He did this as a pattern and example for us. Anyone who repents and is immersed for the forgiveness of sins in the name of Yeshua can receive the Holy Spirit as a gift of grace (Acts 2:38). All one has to do is ask (Luke 11:13).
Before Yeshua received the impartation of power, He prayed, fasted for 40 days, and resisted the temptations of the devil. In our lives as well, prayer, fasting, fighting the devil, and passing the tests of obedience from God will increase spiritual power and anointing in our lives.
Notice that the three primary tests in the wilderness had to do with misuse of the power of God; that is, using the power of God out of the wrong motivations (Luke 4:3-13). If God knows we will use the power for the right reasons, He can increase the anointing. Using the power of God for the wrong reasons amounts to a form of witchcraft, even if we try to use the name of Yeshua to justify it (Acts 8:18-23).
Many believers today who love God are missing the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. Perhaps this is because we are flooded with media influences, worldly worries, and social pressures. If we want more of the anointing, we must seek out desert-type experiences instead of indulging in pillow-culture comforts.
Asher serves as president of Tikkun Global family of ministries and congregations, dedicated to the dual restoration of Israel and the Church. He is founder of the Revive Israel five-fold ministry team, and oversees both Ahavat Yeshua and Tiferet Yeshua congregations in Israel.
He and his wife Betty share a passion for personal prayer and devotion, local evangelism and discipleship in Hebrew, and unity of the Body of believers worldwide.
Asher was raised in a conservative Jewish home and holds degrees from Harvard University, Baltimore Hebrew College and Messiah Biblical Institute. He has authored numerous books, tracts and articles.