The Power of God: "Who are kept by the power of God through faith.. . ready to be revealed in the last time" (1 Pet. 1:5). "Kept from what? Ah, what mortal is capable of returning a full answer? A whole section might profitably be devoted to this one aspect of our subject. Kept from the dominion of sin which still dwells within us. Kept from being drawn Out of the narrow way by the enticements of the world. Kept from the horrible heresies which ensnare thousands on every side. Kept from being overcome by Satan, who ever seeks our destruction. Kept from departing from the living God so that we do not make shipwreck of the faith. Kept from turning His grace into lasciviousness. Weak as water in ourselves, yet enabled to endure as seeing Him who is invisible. This "is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes."
Sin is a mighty monarch which none of his subjects can withstand. There was more in Adam while innocent to resist sin than in any other since, for sin has an ally within the fallen creature that is ever ready to betray him into temptation from without. But sin had no such advantage over Adam, nevertheless it overwhelmed him. The non-elect angels were yet better able to withstand sin than Adam was, having a more excellent nature and being nearer to God, yet sin prevailed against them, and threw them out of heaven into hell. Then what a mighty power is required to subdue it! Only He who "led captivity captive" can make His people more than conquerors.
"As the providence of God is a manifestation of His power in a continued creation, so the preservation of grace is a manifestation of His power in a continued regeneration. God’s strength abates and modifies the violence of temptations, His staff supports His people under them, His might defeats the power of Satan. The counterworkings of indwelling corruptions, the reluctancies of the flesh against the breathings of the spirit, the fallacies of the senses and the rovings of the mind would quickly stifle and quench grace if it were not maintained by the same all-powerful blast that first inbreathed it. No less power is seen in perfecting it, than implanting it (2 Peter 1:3); no less in fulfilling the work of faith, than in engrafting the word of faith (2 Thess. 1:11)."—S. Charnock.
The preservation of God’s people in this world greatly glories the power of God. To preserve those with so many corruptions within and so many temptations without magnifies His ineffable might more than if He were to translate them to heaven the moment they believed. In a world of suffering and sorrow, to preserve the faith of His people amid so many and sore testings, trials, buffetings, disappointments, betrayals by friends and professed brethren in Christ, is infinitely more wonderful than if a man should succeed in carrying an unsheltered candle alight across an open moor when a hurricane was blowing. To the glory of God the writer bears witness that but for omnipotent grace he had become an infidel years ago as the result of the treatment he had received from those who posed as preachers of the Gospel. Yes, for God to supply strength to His fainting people, and enable them to "hold the beginning of their confidence stedfast unto the end" (Heb. 3:14), is more marvelous than though He were to keep a fire burning in the midst of the ocean.
How the contemplation of the power of God should deepen our confidence and trust in Him: "Trust ye in the Lord for ever: for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength" (Isa. 26:4). The power of God was the ground of Abraham’s assurance (Heb. 11:19), of the three Hebrews’ in Babylon (Dan. 3:17), of Christ’s (Heb. 5:7). Oh, to bear constantly in mind that "God is able to make all grace abound toward us" (2 Cor. 19:8). Nothing is so calculated to calm the mind, still our fears, and fill us with peace as faith’s appropriation of God’s sufficiency. "If God be for us, who can be against us?" (Rom. 8:3 1). His infallible promise is, "Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness" (Isa. 41:10). He who brought a nation through the Red Sea without any ships, and led them across the desert for forty years where was neither bread nor water, still lives and reigns!