I Can Do Nothing
Do you begin any completely new task, purpose, or job already knowing everything to do, or exactly what, and how to best do it? We usually learn these things, and most often by watching others. Children learn by watching their parents, and most often will learn to do as the parents do, good or bad. Have you ever felt like a failure spiritually because you do not see the perfect results of what you purpose to do? Our perfection is only in doing exactly as the perfect Father;
John 5:19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.
If Jesus would do nothing of himself, why do we allow ourselves to choose or do anything spiritually without seeing that He has purposed, done, or willed it to be so? And if we see Him do something, we should purpose to also doeth the Son likewise. We do not need to question or know ourselves that it is right if we are assured that He purposed it;
John 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
If Jesus said I can of mine own self do nothing, how can we be assured of accomplishing anything? If our spiritual purpose cannot come from self, how or where will we get it? Can we hear when God speaks? Jesus said as I hear, I judge; ask God to give you spiritual hearing and seeing, that in obedience you may also have clarity of spiritual purpose. It is then that the things that you do will be a spiritual witness;
John 8:28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
If we are led completely and totally by the Father our lives will also become a witness. God is one, and as Jesus stayed in the Father and sought everything from Him, we are to stay in and seek everything from Jesus;
John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
Jesus is the light, are we abiding in light or darkness? Abiding in Him is receiving sustenance, grace, mercy, deliverance, and provision. Abiding in Him will not allow us to do anything against Him;
II Corinthians 13:8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.
Pilate asked Jesus, What is truth?, but should have asked Who is truth? If we are abiding fully in Jesus we will do as He calls or bids; there will be no action of self that conflicts with His calling. Do you abide in Him when the tribulation comes, or does your flesh lead you to seek relief? I can of mine own self do nothing. Recently reading in Romans 5 the following was considered closer;
Romans 5: 3 – 5 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
Going through the Strong’s definitions of tribulation, patience, and experience was very enlightening. Tribulation said: pressure (literally or figuratively). Patience said: cheerful (or hopeful) endurance, constancy. Experience said: test (abstractly or concretely); by implication trustiness. It is all the homogenization process! So when the pressure comes we need to cheerfully endure and pass the test to receive the hope! Hope said; (to anticipate, usually with pleasure); expectation (abstractly or concretely) or confidence. If we know that our walk has reached the place with Him to know that His will, His purpose, and His path for us are assured, what greater hope (expectation or confidence) can or could we have? I can of mine own self do nothing. Can you see how this knowing that you are on the Father’s path can then allow the flow of His love by the Spirit in a greater measure? And can you see and know that this fulness of assurance, hope, and love can work together, prevent or destroy all doubt and fear, and then give the fulness of faith (Romans 5:5, I John 4:17, 18, and Galatians 5:6)? If it is the complete will of the Father, He will speak or purpose it and bring it to pass!
Isaiah 46:9 – 11 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure: Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.
If we know that what God has spoken or purposed will come to pass with or without us, how much more assurance should we have in going His perfect way? I can of mine own self do nothing. If the burning bush that Moses saw was not consumed, know that God can allow you to burn as a shining light and not be consumed. Jesus spoke of John the Baptist in John 5:35 and said He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light. Allow Him to open your spiritual hearing and seeing, that you may also go in obedience as a burning and a shining light!
Moses was concerned about his ability to speak or to be used. But if God allowed Balaam’s ass to speak, what could and did He do for Moses (and can do for you) in boldness and assurance? God used only a youth with a sling and stone against Goliath; what can He do for you in any seemingly insurmountable task? If God used hornets (Exodus 23:8), or hailstones (Joshua 10:11), or only a noise (II Kings 7:5 – 8) in warfare, or used an angel to destroy 185,000 men in one night (II Kings 19:35), you should be confident, know, and have no doubt that His counsel, will, purpose, and pleasure are assured to come to pass. Outside of the examples of warfare, He fed five thousand with the loaves and fishes. But all of these and many, many, more examples are physical occurrences. How much more will God establish His counsel, will, purpose, and pleasure in the spiritual? Romans 8:31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? We do not have to know in advance what will happen, (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) II Corinthians 5:7, but we can walk in an assurance that if God has told us to do it, it will perform His purpose! I can of mine own self do nothing. Let Him use you as a spiritual object, as He did a bush, an ass, a sling, a stone, a hornet, a hailstone, a noise, an angel, a loaf, or a fish, and go blessing and being blessed! Choose to hear and do, that He may make you a burning and a shining light!
Brother Tommy Williams said that God asked him, Do you want to see everyone you pray for healed? Then only pray for the ones that I tell you to. I can of mine own self do nothing. We can see this scripturally in the man at the gate called Beautiful: how many times had each of the Apostles, or even Jesus, passed by this man before? How many countless times before had Peter and John gone by, but on this day they were led to stop; the will, timing, and purpose of God was to reach 5,000 souls.
Consider the Apostle Paul in the following;
Acts 14:8 – 10 And there sat a certain man at Lystra, impotent in his feet, being a cripple from his mother’s womb, who never had walked: The same heard Paul speak: who stedfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed, Said with a loud voice, Stand upright on thy feet. And he leaped and walked.
What led Paul to stedfastly behold? Who led his perceiving? How many others were there who were disadvantaged in some means, needed something, but did not receive? Paul was led by God to this man’s healing or miracle. Do not be concerned or impatient in the wait: when God purposes He will bring it to pass. Will you choose fleshly satisfaction in the wait, or will you wait for Spiritual perfection?
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
You can overcome, because God does not put more on you than you can bear, and He also makes the way of escape (I Corinthians 10:13). By what means does Christ strengthen and enable us? Is there some intangible process whereby we are changed into His image? The strengthening is by His grace, if we will receive it;
II Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
The Apostle Paul, the same one who mentioned the strengthening of Christ to the Philippians, spoke the words of Jesus and declared to the Corinthian church the means of that sufficiency and strength, the grace of Jesus. IT IS BY HIS GRACE THAT WE ARE STRENGTHENED! I can of mine own self do nothing.