When we were boys, it wasn’t uncommon for friends to roll up their sleeves and try to impress each other by making the muscle pop up on their biceps. The unimpressed friend usually had a smart-aleck comment to deflate the would-be Hercules. “Is that a muscle or a grape?”
There was a fellow named Charles Atlas who impressed me. You could see his advertisements in the comic books. He was good looking with muscles on top of his muscles. And he informed us that he used to be a 98-pound weakling; bullies kicked sand in his face at the beach!
Can you imagine that? No more though. He’d found the secret of making muscles, and for a price he’d sell me his muscle-making magic. I wanted those muscles but I wanted my money even more. Today, I’m no longer a 98 pound weakling. I’m more like a —pound weakling and it doesn’t bother me.
I don’t go to the beach enough to get sand kicked at me.
Here’s a thought. Can you imagine God rolling up His sleeve to show us his muscles? He did and He will.
“The LORD will lay bare his holy arm in the sight of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth will see the salvation of our God.” (Isa. 52:10, NIV) The Message renders that verse like this: “God has rolled up his sleeves. All the nations can see his holy, muscled arm. Everyone, from one end of the earth to the other, sees him at work, doing his salvation work.”
Whoa! That would be impressive, but when did God do that? When he was doing His salvation work … But, He sure didn’t seem powerful then. Hanging on the Cross, He seemed the weakest of the weakest. Maybe, when we think we’re weak, God’s getting ready to show His muscles through our lives.
And in heavenly places, spiritual places, He didn’t look weak at all. By His death and resurrection Jesus stomped on the head of our enemy and destroyed the power that eternal death had over us. He rose triumphantly the third day and rose to the right hand of His Father. He didn’t look weak then.
In fact, He had a million times more muscles than Samson, Schwarzenegger, Stallone and Charles Atlas put together. He routed Satan’s armies and paved the way for us to walk into eternal life by faith in what He had done.
“When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” (Col. 2:13, NIV)
There will come a Day when the Lord Jesus will be revealed in his glory and all his enemies will see His muscles then, feel them, too. But, until that Day comes we revel in His power at the Cross. God showed His muscles and He saved us. Thank You Lord Jesus.
Share an experience with us when you thought you were weak and defeated and God used that situation to give you victory.
Prayer is the exercise of drawing on the grace of God. Oswald Chambers