Monday, March 26, 2012

From victory, not for victory!

Admittedly this is not a saying I came up with.  It is actually a saying a friend of my wife's said to her.  BUT, it’s too good to not blog about it and I asked my wife first, so… there.

Here’s what she told my wife (and it’s something I wish more Christians understood)…

As Christians, we need to know that we fight from victory, not for victory.

Stinking WOW!  Do you get that?  As we fight the forces which come against us (the enemy, the world, our flesh), we already stand on victory.  We fight from a place already secured by victory.  We’re not fighting to achieve victory, because it’s already been won!

But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.

It doesn't say " He’s GOING to give us victory", it says "He GIVES us victory over sin"!  It drives me to the edge of insanity when I hear Christians say stuff like, “It’s our nature, we’re always going to sin.” Or “I’ll never have victory over this.  I’ll always struggle with it.”  That’s CRAP!  While it is true it’s in our nature to sin and there will be areas of our life more difficult to overcome than others, we already have victory over sin.  Which means, many time (and I would say most) we are able to chose whether we sin or not.  Now, there are sins considered “sins of ignorance” or “unknown sin” (See Psalm 19:12, Leviticus 4:2 & Leviticus 5:17).  In those cases we seek God for forgiveness the way David did in Psalm 19:12.  There are even those moments of uncontrolled frustration where your sin nature grabs a hold of us and we slip (maybe you curse or say something you don’t mean), and I’m not even talking about those sins.  Although, as Jesus transforms you the fruit of The Spirit should be more prevalent and those uncontrolled outbursts should be less and less (it’s called sanctification).

I’m talking about those blatant and willful sins, we typically label with the belittling and obscure excuse “I fell”.  That’s ridiculous.  I’m talking about the sins requiring a conscious act of disobedience and a willful decision to participate in.  Things like sexual immorality, drunkenness, gossip and the like (this is not an all inclusive list, mind you).  These are sins we don’t “accidently” fall into.  These are sins which at some point in our approaching them, we decide, “I’m going to do this.”

Let me say this, I’m not calling anyone out without realizing the plank in my eye.  I know, without a doubt, there are things Christ is still perfecting in me.  Things He aims to destroy for the sake of my holiness.  And I’m fully aware there is a process Christ takes us through to weed out and get rid of the things which draw us away and keep us from Him.  The process is difficult, no doubt, and often a struggle, and I don’t mean to take away from the work we put into it or the work Christ does in us to overcome those struggles.  But we need to realize the truth that we’re not fighting FOR victory, it’s already been won!  We are not slaves to sin anymore (Romans 6:18) and it’s time we realize that and start acting as slaves to righteousness (right living).  That’s what we’re bound to… the righteousness of Christ.  There are so many times WE get to chose if we sin or not.  In the instances when it becomes difficult to resist, we rely on Christ being strong in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).  Coincidentally, that is part of why He calls us into fellowship with other believers... accountability.  The truth is, when we act like victory hasn’t been achieved, we disregard the work of Christ on the cross.  He won it for us, so we don’t need to.

Rest in His victory. Fight from His victory.