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What Jesus said blew His disciples away. It was stunning.

  • Am I hearing Jesus properly?
  • Am I stunned?
  • Am I blown away?

And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” | English Standard Version. (2016). (Mk 10:23–27). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

What is the Kingdom of God all about? It is about God and His power. Nothing is impossible with God. That is it. If I ask and question God’s power, desire and capability then I am in deep trouble. I am fighting against Jesus. Jesus is saying it to me. Jesus is serious.

The disciples were shocked at the Master’s declaration about wealth, because most Jews thought that the possession of great wealth was the evidence of God’s special blessing. Many people today still cling to this error, in spite of the message of Job, the example of the Messiah and the Apostles, and the clear teaching of the New Testament. In the case of this young man, his wealth robbed him of God’s greatest blessing, eternal life. Today, wealth continues to make rich people poor and the first last.

Money is a marvelous servant but a terrible master. If you possess money, be grateful and use it for God’s glory; but if money possesses you, beware! It is good to have the things that money can buy, provided you don’t lose the things that money cannot buy. The deceitfulness of riches had so choked the soil of this young man’s heart that he was unable to receive the good seed of the Word and be saved. What a bitter harvest he would reap one day!

God’s goal: It is not about how much money I have or what kind of car I drive. It doesn’t matter the size of my 401(k). The size of my house is not the issue. It is about love and loving God. It is about seriously following Jesus. It is about God’s will.

Jesus is challenging us. Jesus is saying amazing things to us.

  • Do I believe Him?
  • Will I act on what He says?
  • Do I know that all things are possible with God in His kingdom?

Digging Deeper – What is the power of God like?

If you want to dig deeper, here are some additional resources. We often hear about the power of God, and Scripture is full of examples of His power in action. He is “the great God, mighty and awesome” (Nehemiah 9:32). We are taught to rely on His great power to get us through trials such as a job loss, a sticky divorce, bankruptcy, hateful persecutions, a debilitating illness, or the loss of a loved one. Learning to rely on the power of God is part of living the Christian life.

The apostle Paul gives us a glimpse of the power of God when he writes of “his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority” (Ephesians 1:19–21).

  • The Greek word translated “great” is megethos, which means “strong” or “great,” and it appears only here in the New Testament.
  • This word obviously wasn’t sufficient for Paul to express God’s great power, so he adds the word incomparably or, in Greek, hyperballon, related to a verb that literally means to “throw beyond the usual mark” or to “excel or surpass.”
  • So, the full idea of the expression hyperballon megethos is that of a power beyond measure, a super-abounding or surpassing power, power that is “more than enough.”

New Strong’s Dictionary

δύναμις dunamis, doo´-nam-is; from 1410; force (lit. or fig.); spec. miraculous power (usually by impl. a miracle itself):— ability, abundance, meaning, might (-ily, -y, -y deed), (worker of) miracle (-s), power, strength, violence, mighty (wonderful) work.[1]

Baker Encyclopedia

God is almighty and all other power is derived from him and subject to him. Much that the Bible says is summed up in the words of 1 Chronicles 29:11–12 addressed to God in praise: “Thine, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O Lord … thou rulest over all. In thy hand are power and might; and in thy hand it is to make great and to give strength to all.” Using human terms the OT often speaks of God’s “mighty hand” and his “outstretched arm,” both being used for the power of God in action (Ex 6:6; 7:4; Ps 44:2, 3). His power is seen in creation (Ps 65:6; Is 40:26; Jer 10:12; 27:5), in his rule over the world (2 Chr 20:6), in his acts of salvation and judgment (Ex 15:6; Dt 26:8) and in all that he does for his people (Ps 111:6). The NT as well as the OT speaks of the mighty power of God. Ephesians 1:19 speaks of “the immeasurable greatness of his power” and the words of Jesus in Matthew 26:64 show that the word could be substituted for the very name of God when he said that the Son of man would be seen “seated at the right hand of Power.”[2]

Holman Treasure of Key Bible Words

The Greek word for power is dunamis; it speaks of “potential power” and “actual power.” Our English word “dynamite” is a derivative. Everyone knows that dynamite is powerful, but God is more powerful. He can create things, while dynamite can only devastate.

Everything in creation has a certain amount of “power,” but God’s power is immutable. Animals have power. There is power in nature: the wind and storms, the thunder and lightning. People have the power to do good and evil. Rulers have God-given power and authority (Rom. 13:1). The Bible also speaks of the power of angels (2 Pet. 2:11) and of spiritual beings known as “principalities and powers.” Satan has also been given certain powers (Job 1:6–12; 2:1–6). But God is all-powerful (Eph. 1:19). In fact, “Power” is a name for God. Jesus said that the Son of man would be seen “seated at the right hand of Power” (Matt. 26:64, nasb).

God’s power was manifested in Jesus. This power was shown through Jesus’ miracles (Matt. 11:20; Acts 2:22); in His works of healing and exorcism (Luke 4:36; 5:17; 6:19; Acts 10:38). God’s power is shown supremely in His resurrection. Jesus speaks of His power to give up His life and the power to take it again (John 10:18), but the New Testament speaks most frequently of the power of God the Father shown in the raising of His Son from the dead (Rom. 1:4; Eph. 1:19–20). During the Second Coming, Jesus will be seen coming on the clouds of heaven with “power” and great glory (Matt. 24:30).

Meanwhile, Jesus is able to deliver people from the power of sin and death, from Satan, and from all the spiritual forces of evil (2 Cor. 10:4; Eph. 6:10–18). Since the ruler of this world, Satan, had no power over Christ (John 14:30), he cannot have power over those who rely on Him. Those who believe in God receive power from the Holy Spirit (Acts 6:8), inner dynamo to live in His service (Eph. 3:16), power to be His witnesses (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8), and power to endure suffering (2 Tim. 1:8).[3]

Wayne Grudem Systematic Theology

Note: Dr. Grudem covers this under the topic of Omnipotence.

God’s omnipotence means that God is able to do all his holy will. The word omnipotence is derived from two Latin words, omni, “all,” and potens, “powerful,” and means “all-powerful.” Whereas God’s freedom referred to the fact that there are no external constraints on God’s decisions, God’s omnipotence has reference to his own power to do what he decides to do.

This power is frequently mentioned in Scripture. God is “the Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord, mighty in battle!” (Ps. 24:8). The rhetorical question, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” (Gen. 18:14; Jer. 32:27) certainly implies (in the contexts in which it occurs) that nothing is too hard for the Lord. In fact, Jeremiah says to God, “Nothing is too hard for you” (Jer. 32:17).

Paul says that God is “able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think” (Eph. 3:20), and God is called the “Almighty” (2 Cor. 6:18; Rev. 1:8), a term (Gk. pantokratōr) that suggests the possession of all power and authority. Furthermore, the angel Gabriel says to Mary, “Nothing will be impossible with God” (Luke 1:37), and Jesus says, “With God all things are possible” (Matt. 19:26).

These passages indicate that God’s power is infinite and that he is therefore not limited to doing only what he actually has done. In fact, God is able to do more than he actually does. For example, John the Baptist says in Matthew 3:9, “God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham.” God is one who “does all that he pleases” (Ps. 115:3); he could have destroyed Israel and raised up a great nation from Moses (cf. Ex. 32:10), but he did not do so.[4]

[1] Strong, J. (1996). The New Strong’s Dictionary of Hebrew and Greek Words. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[2] Elwell, W. A., & Beitzel, B. J. (1988). Power. In Baker encyclopedia of the Bible (Vol. 2, pp. 1742–1743). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.

[3] Carpenter, E. E., & Comfort, P. W. (2000). In Holman treasury of key Bible words: 200 Greek and 200 Hebrew words defined and explained (p. 363). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

[4] Grudem, W. (2020). Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Second Edition, p. 258). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Academic.