In verse 37 of Romans Chapter 8, Paul declares, ‘Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.’ Praise God! Christians are equipped and empowered to do, be and accomplish what God has ordained. In Jesus, no power, person or phenomenon can separate us from the love of God and all that His love means for our lives (Romans 8:38-39). In Christ, we are overcomers!
Being an overcomer is a reality we must embrace to experience. There are always doubts, hurdles and impossibilities that stand in the way of achieving what God has gifted and called us to do. But as overcomers, we must press on in obedience regardless of how and what we or others feel, observe or think. To live like the overcomers we are, we must move forward in faith; even when everything else is screaming at us to stop where we are.
We fulfill our call to be overcomers because of who lives in of us.
- John 14:23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.
- Ephesians 3:16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man,
- Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
But we can fall short of our call to be overcomers because of things external to us. Here are some common barriers to living as overcomers.
- Concerns raised can initiate invalid Opinions
- Constraints recognized can intensify impenetrable Obstacles
- Calculations rendered can imply impossible Odds
Diligent, obedient and faithful servants of God break through these barriers in His strength for His glory.
Opinions – Joseph
Is God glorified when concerns cause us to question what God has called us to do? No.
- Genesis 37:8 And his brothers said to him, “Shall you indeed reign over us? Or shall you indeed have dominion over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.
- At seventeen years old, Joseph’s understanding of what His dreams foretold was limited at best. But his brothers had very strong opinions; to them, Joseph’s dreams validated their hate – not only was he their father’s favorite son, but now they viewed him as arrogant.
- Yet despite being sold into slavery by his brothers, and being thrown into prison for a crime he didn’t commit, Joseph honored and obeyed the Lord through his actions and decisions. Many years passed before Joseph’s family saw the fulfillment of God’s plan; Joseph ruled over Egypt, second only to Pharaoh, and not only saved his family, but also all the people of the land.
- Joseph was an Overcomer!
Obstacles – Moses
Is God glorified when constraints cause us to avoid what God has ordained? No.
- Exodus 14:11 Then they said to Moses, “Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you so dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt?
- Soon after being delivered from slavery in Egypt, the Israelites found themselves trapped – Pharaoh and his army approaching from one side and the Red Sea on the other. All the Israelites could see was the obstacle that blocked their escape – in horror they longed to return to Egypt and run from the destiny God had ordained for them.
- But God was faithful and Moses was obedient; the Lord miraculously parted the Red Sea and created a safe passage for His chosen people to escape. Moses led the people as they left behind hundreds of years of slavery and moved forward towards the fulfilment of God’s covenant with Abraham.
- Moses was an Overcomer!
Odds – Gideon
Is God glorified when calculations cause us to doubt what God can do? No.
- Judges 7:2 And the Lord said to Gideon, “The people who are with you are too many for Me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel claim glory for itself against Me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me.’
- 300 against 135,00; what chance could these Israelites have in a battle against the Midianites? Do the math – no matter how smart, no matter how strong, no matter how experienced in battle, the 300 soldiers of Israel could not win this battle.
- Well, that’s exactly the point. Using Gideon, the least in his father’s house, from the weakest clan in his tribe, as only He could do, God brought victory and freedom from oppression despite impossible odds.
- Gideon was an Overcomer!
When we believe God and obey Him,
we fulfill our call to be Overcomers!
Consider what happened when Moses sent men to spy out Canaan – ten of the twelve spies he sent did not overcome the barriers listed above. As a result, the Nation of Israel did not enter the Promised Land at that time and were made to wander in the desert for forty years
- Number 13:27-28 Then they told him, and said: “We went to the land where you sent us. It truly flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. 28 Nevertheless the people who dwell in the land are strong; the cities are fortified and very large; moreover we saw the descendants of Anak there.
- Opinions – ‘the people who dwell in the land are strong’
- They felt that the people of the land were too strong to overcome. They did not trust and obey God.
- Obstacles – ‘the cities are fortified and very large’
- They observed that the fortified cities could not be breached. They did not trust and obey God.
- Odds – ‘moreover we saw the descendants of Anak there’
- They determined that they couldn’t win in a battle against giants. They did not trust and obey God.
But forty years later, Joshua, a faithful and obedient servant of God, led the Israelites into the Promised Land and on to victory.
- Joshua 1:8-9 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
- Joshua heeded God’s Word and embraced the instructions and encouragement he received from God. Joshua trusted and obeyed God.
- Joshua was an Overcomer!
Christians are Overcomers!
But do we live like it?
Faithful Father, so often I fail to embrace the reality that in Christ Jesus I am an overcomer. I am guilty of letting doubts, fears and perceived impossibilities stand in the way of victory in the things You have called me to do. Please forgive me. Please help me to trust and obey. Bless Your people and help us all to live as the overcomers You made us in Jesus. May the truth of Your Word draw many lost to salvation in Jesus. For it is in His precious name that I pray. Amen.