08 Feb LIVING THE LIFE OF AN OVERCOMER
LIVING THE LIFE OF AN OVERCOMER
God planned for the human race to overcome the challenges presented to us through the fall of Adam and Eve, the first humans who yielded to the enemy the authority granted them to rule this earth. Through the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, His sacrifice on the cross, and then His resurrection, we have come to the place where the provision has been made for us to be overcomers in this life. The choices we make, (based on our knowledge of the provisions), will determine whether we experience the life of an overcomer or not. The choice is ours.
Romans 8:37-39 (NKJV)
“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
1 John 5:4-5 (NKJV)
“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?”
2 Corinthians 2:14 (NKJV)
“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.”
1 Corinthians 15:57 (NKJV)
“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Know the Provisions That Have Been Made
Through the sacrifice of Christ Jesus on the cross and His death, burial and resurrection, we have come into a new identity, a new authority and these should produce a new lifestyle that is full of faith and exudes confidence in the finished work of Calvary.
2 Corinthians 5:14-21 (NKJV)
“For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.
Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
We also have come into a new provision.
Ephesians 1:3-12 (NKJV)
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him. In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.”
Receive the identity, provision, position, and authority by faith. Be established in these things by a faith lifestyle. As a new creation, your words, thoughts and actions should be in harmony with your new life in Christ.
Romans 10:9-11 (NKJV)
“that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.”
Your new lifestyle has come to be based on “believing with your heart (what God’s Word says) and confessing with your mouth what you believe. Then, your experience will line up with the Word of God. The lifestyle of faith demands walking in the love of God and not bearing grudges against anyone. Our expectations should be based on God’s power to perform His Word in our lives. Our prayers also should be based on God’s unfailing Word to us.
David’s victory over Goliath captures the principles and practice of faith and clearly illustrates the overcomer lifestyle.
He started out with a loyal heart to obey his father, Jesse.
1 Samuel 17:17-22 (NKJV)
“Then Jesse said to his son David, “Take now for your brothers an ephah of this dried grain and these ten loaves, and run to your brothers at the camp. And carry these ten cheeses to the captain of their thousand, and see how your brothers fare, and bring back news of them.” Now Saul and they and all the men of Israel were in the Valley of Elah, fighting with the Philistines. So David rose early in the morning, left the sheep with a keeper, and took the things and went as Jesse had commanded him. And he came to the camp as the army was going out to the fight and shouting for the battle. For Israel and the Philistines had drawn up in battle array, army against army. And David left his supplies in the hand of the supply keeper, ran to the army, and came and greeted his brothers.”
He heard Goliath defy the armies of the living God.
1 Samuel 17:23-27
“Then as he talked with them, there was the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, coming up from the armies of the Philistines; and he spoke according to the same words. So David heard them. And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him and were dreadfully afraid. So the men of Israel said, “Have you seen this man who has come up? Surely he has come up to defy Israel; and it shall be that the man who kills him the king will enrich with great riches, will give him his daughter, and give his father’s house exemption from taxes in Israel.” Then David spoke to the men who stood by him, saying, “What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?” And the people answered him in this manner, saying, “So shall it be done for the man who kills him.”
Note that David was conscious of the covenant they had with God and identified the army of Israel as the armies of the living God. His sense of identity was based on the covenant God had with Moses based on the circumcision. He identified Goliath as uncircumcised. Hence he had no covenant standing with God.
David was careful to avoid offence when his elder brother tried to insult him.
1 Samuel 17:27-31 (NKJV)
“And the people answered him in this manner, saying, “So shall it be done for the man who kills him.” Now Eliab his oldest brother heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab’s anger was aroused against David, and he said, “Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.” And David said, “What have I done now? Is there not a cause?” Then he turned from him toward another and said the same thing; and these people answered him as the first ones did. Now when the words which David spoke were heard, they reported them to Saul; and he sent for him.”
He refused to be offended, and then had the opportunity to see the king. Remember, he overcame the prevailing spirit of fear that the words of Goliath had generated amongst the army of Israel and the king was also afraid of Goliath.
1 Samuel 17:32-37 (NKJV)
“Then David said to Saul, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.” And Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.” But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.” Moreover David said, “The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.”
And Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you!”
David had confidence in the God who gave him victory in the recent past. His contemplation of his experience with the lion and the bear brought him to faith’s conclusion that the power of God, based on His covenant with us, can be depended upon as we release our faith through the words we speak.
1 Samuel 17:38-47 (NKJV)
“So Saul clothed David with his armor, and he put a bronze helmet on his head; he also clothed him with a coat of mail. David fastened his sword to his armor and tried to walk, for he had not tested them. And David said to Saul, “I cannot walk with these, for I have not tested them.” So David took them off. Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand. And he drew near to the Philistine. So the Philistine came, and began drawing near to David, and the man who bore the shield went before him. And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was only a youth, ruddy and good-looking. So the Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands.”
Watch the Declarations of Faith!
David prevails as his words and actions were devoid of fear, doubts and unbelief. Rather, they were based on faith and confidence in the God of Israel. Our confidence should be in God through our covenant with Him; through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
1 Samuel 17:48-54 (NKJV)
“So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hurried and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung it and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth. So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. But there was no sword in the hand of David. Therefore David ran and stood over the Philistine, took his sword and drew it out of its sheath and killed him, and cut off his head with it. And when the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled. Now the men of Israel and Judah arose and shouted, and pursued the Philistines as far as the entrance of the valley and to the gates of Ekron. And the wounded of the Philistines fell along the road to Shaaraim, even as far as Gath and Ekron. Then the children of Israel returned from chasing the Philistines, and they plundered their tents. And David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem, but he put his armor in his tent.”
We are indeed more than conquerors through Christ Jesus our Lord. The summary is as follows: David, maybe by virtue of being an ardent worshipper of God, had an inner working knowledge of God that produced confidence in his life. He knew to stand against whatever stood against God’s plans and purposes for his life. He was confident that God’s power would be made available for him. He had fresh recollections of God’s power being demonstrated on his behalf. He never attributed past victories to himself but rightly gave the credit to God Almighty. He knew his covenant rights and privileges. He knew how to position himself for God’s power to produce victorious outcomes in his life.
He avoided being offended, i.e. when his elder brother insulted him. He also avoided trying new outfits to fight his battles. The king asked him to try on his armour. He was not moved by the size, words or weapons of his opponent. Any mental comparisons between his size and Goliath’s size would have led to intimidation. He refused the spirit of fear.
He knew the power of words. He never let his opponent have the last word. He always spoke back. He spoke faith-filled words. He matched his words with corresponding actions of faith. He threw the stone knowing it would be God’s power that would kill the giant but he still needed to use what he had.
Rev. Kola Ewuosho