Monday, October 14, 2013

NOW THAT THE VICTORY IS WON by Gary Wilkerson

As Christians we know that Jesus won the victory for us at Calvary. He defeated death, Satan and the power of sin. The question remaining for believers is, “Now what? I know Jesus won my victory on the cross, but what about my present conflict? Where is His victory for the battle raging in my life right now?”

It’s an important question—and the Word contains an answer for every Christian. It begins with this scene: “The Philistines gathered their armies for battle . . . at Socoh, which belongs to Judah” (1 Samuel 17:1, ESV). This image presents a spiritual truth that never changes: The forces of darkness are arrayed against God’s people.

When Jesus became your Savior, He made you a new creation—and although you changed, the world did not. Because of this, there are powers that align themselves against you: the world, the devil and even your own flesh, which wars against your spirit.

Sometimes your battles with these forces are external—attacks on your marriage, your finances, your children—and sometimes they are internal. We are nagged by worries: “Can my marriage survive this long, cold silence?”

“Will my child ever give his life to the Lord?”

“Am I even worthy to call myself a Christian?” All these pressures push us toward doubt and despair, causing us to wonder, “Where is God in all this? I can’t see Him beyond my daily battles.”

At times we cry, “Enough!” and draw a line in the sand. We tell ourselves, “I’m tired of being beaten up by the enemy.” But the devil keeps crossing that line. This happened to Israel as they faced the Philistines. “The Philistines stood on the mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with a valley between them” (17:3). Did that stop the enemy? Not at all. The Philistines brought out a greater weapon in the form of Goliath, a giant of a man.

David knew he was no match for Goliath but he also knew that the battle wasn’t his but God’s. When he heard Goliath’s taunts, he testified: “This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down . . . that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel . . . For the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give you into our hand” (17:46-47).

Spiritual victory is never our own; it comes from our Deliverer.