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S. D. Gordon: God's Power is Moral Power

"The only sort of power that influences in the spirit realm is moral power. By which is not meant goodness, but that sort of power either bad or good which is not of a physical sort: that higher, infinitely higher and greater power than the mere physical. Moral power is the opposite of violent or physical power.

"God does not use force, violent physical force. There are some exceptions to this statement. There have been righteous wars, righteous on one side. Turning to the Bible record, in emergencies, in extreme instances God has ordered war measures. The nations that Israel was told to remove by death of war would have inevitably worn themselves out through their physical excesses, and disobedience of the laws of life. But a wide view of the area revealed an emergency which demanded a speedier movement. And as an exception, for the sake of His plan for the ultimate saving of a race, and a world, God gave an extermination order. The emergency makes the exception. There is one circumstance under which the taking of a human life is right, namely, when it can be clearly established that God, the giver and sovereign of life, has so directed. But the rule clearly is that God does not use force.

"But note sharply in contrast with this that physical force is one of Satan's chief weapons. But mark there two intensely interesting facts: first, he can use it only as he secures man as his ally, and uses it through him. And second, in using it he has with great subtlety sought to shift the sphere of action. He knows that in the sphere of spirit, force pure and simple, he is at a disadvantage: indeed, worse yet, he is defeated. For there is a moral force on the other side greater than any at his command. The forces of purity and righteousness he simply cannot withstand. Jesus is the personification of purity and righteousness. It was on this moral ground, in this spirit sphere that He won the great victory. He ran a terrific gauntlet of tests, subtle and fierce, through those human years, and came out victor with His purity and righteousness unstained."

— S. D. Gordon, Quiet Talks on Prayer.


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