“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in victory through Christ.” 2 Corinthians 2:14 (NCV).
Always victory, we can always overcome! Words like that make us excited! That Satan, our lusts and sinful desires, and the world never have power over us anymore! This is possible, and this is what we are called to. (1 Peter 2:21.)
Overcoming sin: this is what God called us to
God has called us to live a life where we always overcome. But for most people this hasn't happened yet. God wants us to listen closely to what He says in His word (2 Peter 1:19) because we can only overcome “in Him”.
God had already spoken to the first people about overcoming sin. He told Cain in Genesis 4:7 (GNT), “If you had done the right thing, you would be smiling; but because you have done evil, sin is crouching at your door. It wants to rule you, but you must overcome it.” But Cain didn’t listen to God, and did his own will. He could have received power to rule over sin, but he chose not to.
Let us listen to what God’s word says and do it, because God hasn’t changed. The word of God can chase all darkness and unbelief away. In Romans 5:17 we read about God’s great grace and the gift of righteousness which makes it possible for us to rule over sin through Jesus Christ. God commands us to overcome and He will give us the power to do so. But we must believe that He will give us this power to overcome, because our faith is the power by which we overcome the world. (1 John 5:4.)
We overcome and we are blessed if we do not do what our sinful desires want, and say No to all its temptations. If we are faithful in this, we will receive the crown of life which God has promised to those who love Him. (James 1:12.) This is the narrow way, it is not an easy way – but it is the way that leads to life.
Watch: the first thing we need for overcoming
“And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!” Mark 13:37. This is the first thing we need to do if we want to overcome. When we watch and pray we will avoid unnecessary temptations and will always overcome. Then we will not be tempted more than we can bear, because God also makes a way out of the temptation, so that we can bear it.
It’s not so difficult to give up the things of this world if our mind is busy with the things of God; but if we are only focused on earthly things and things that we can see, it’s not so easy when Satan and our own lusts and desires tempt us to do sin. But if our thoughts are focused on things that are good in God’s eyes, Satan can never overpower us; we are watchful, and Satan will not touch us. Then we live with Christ, rule with Him over sin, and we will always overcome! (1 Timothy 2:3; 1 John 5:18.)
God’s word shows us what is perfect, and the Spirit leads us in the same direction. Our sinful nature wants the opposite and is working hard against the Spirit! All this resistance from our sinful nature must be overcome! God wants us to be as righteous and good as He is – and we have to understand that this takes time, so we do not become tired in our soul. (2 Peter 3:14-16.) We really need God to be patient with us, especially when it comes to being cleansed from every sin so that we will be perfect before Him!
God is very good!
The Lord understands us and is merciful (James 5:11), and He is patient with us, because He doesn’t want anyone to fall away. All those who want to, may come and receive the water of life as a free gift. (Revelation 22:17.) He helps all who fall. (Psalm 145:14.) He carefully follows along with everyone. But people who are unfaithful and avoid responsibility receive their rightful judgment, as it says in Job 34:11 (NLT), “He repays people according to their deeds. He treats people as they deserve.”
God will never change what He expects of us once He has shown us how to come to an overcoming life. Moses was not allowed to enter the promised land because he had disobeyed God and had hit the rock instead of speaking to it, as it says in Deuteronomy 1:37 (NLT), “And the LORD was also angry with me because of you. He said to me, ‘Moses, not even you will enter the Promised Land!’” This is how precisely God wants us to keep His commandments. (Exodus 23:20-21.)
A little disobedience – even if it is very small – brings us eternal loss.
God is very good; He can do wonderful things in sinful people if they are humble and obedient to the Spirit. If you believe, you will see God’s glory. He can make you an overcomer, strong in His mighty power, unshakable as Mount Zion. Always overcoming! (Isaiah 60:20.)