I believe we can say that “the power of Jesus Christ” refers especially to WHO HE IS and thus the blessings we can receive THROUGH HIM.  I believe “the power of the blood of Jesus Christ” refers to WHAT JESUS DID ON THE CROSS and thus it speaks of the power repentant and believing sinners can experience by being justified and redeemed BY THE BLOOD HE SHED ON THE CROSS. Let’s explore scriptures that relate to these two truths.

Again, “the power of Jesus Christ” speaks of WHO HE IS and the power He is able to demonstrate to those who “believe on His name.” It starts with the New Birth, for we read in John 1:12, “But as many as received him, to them gave he POWER to become the sons of God, even to them that BELIEVE ON HIS NAME” (KJV). The moment one truly believes in Jesus as “the Christ, the Son of the living God” (see Matthew 16:16) they are born again. They are now children of God and fit for heaven. They are also “saved from hell” by believing on His name, as we see in Acts 4:12, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is NONE OTHER NAME UNDER HEAVEN given among men, whereby WE MUST BE SAVED.” The Apostle Peter preached forgiveness through His name: “To Him all the prophets witness that, THROUGH HIS NAME, whoever believes in Him will receive REMISSION OF SINS” (Acts 10:43…NKJV). The Apostle Paul preached forgiveness and justification through Him: “Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that THROUGH THIS MAN is preached to you the FORGIVENESS OF SIN; and BY HIM EVERYONE WHO BELIEVES IS JUSTIFIED from all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses” (Acts 13:38-39). Of course, these verses also include “the work Jesus did on the cross” to bring new life, salvation, forgiveness and justification to believing sinners, but they also emphasize faith in WHO HE IS.  

In the early church Jesus Christ gave some of the apostles the power to heal “through His name.” In Acts chapter 3 we see Peter and John with a lame man and Peter was led to say to him, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST OF NAZARETH, rise up and walk” (verse 6). The man was instantly healed as we read in verse 8, “So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them—walking, leaping, and praising God.” This was a wonderful demonstration of “the power of Jesus Christ” to heal one physically, but let us ever remember that this pales in comparison to “His power to give eternal life, salvation, forgiveness of sins and justification.”

Regarding “the power of the blood of Jesus Christ,” there are those, primarily of the PENTECOSTAL and CHARISMATIC groups, who teach that one can be physically healed “by the blood of Jesus.” They will often use a prayer where they “plead the blood of Jesus” to heal or to cast out demons that people have. This may SOUND GOOD, but it has no scriptural support. You will look in vain for any example of the Apostles “pleading the blood of Jesus” to heal or to exhibit any other form of power. As I stated at the beginning, “the power of the blood of Jesus Christ” refers to WHAT JESUS DID ON THE CROSS. By laying down His life on the cross and shedding His blood, He paid the price for the sinner’s justification and redemption. This is borne out in the following passage: “But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed…even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ…being JUSTIFIED freely by His grace through the REDEMPTION that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation BY HIS BLOOD, through faith” (Romans 3:21-22, 24-25). We are told in Ephesians 1:7 that “In Him WE HAVE REDEMPTION THROUGH HIS BLOOD.” Perhaps the most well-known passage on this subject is 1st Peter 1:18-19, “Knowing that you were not REDEEMED with corruptible things…but WITH THE PRECIOUS BLOOD OF CHRIST.” All these scriptures refer to WHAT CHRIST DID and WHAT WE RECEIVED the moment we trusted in His blood that was shed on Calvary for our justification and redemption. They do NOT speak of the power of the blood to heal physical afflictions, to cast out demons or to solve other problems that people have. Many of us know the popular hymn, “There is Power in the Blood.” That beautiful hymn speaks of the power to REDEEM the sinner from “the burden of sin” (Line #1) and “passion and pride” (Line #2), and to make one whose sins are as scarlet “whiter than snow” (Line #3). There is not one syllable in that hymn that speaks of “pleading the blood of Jesus” to heal one’s body or to rid one of demons, for the “blood of Jesus” has the power to redeem the sinner from sin and the very moment he/she believes in “the precious blood of Christ” he/she is REDEEMED!  (446.1)  (DO)