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Victorious in Christ!

By Larry R. Lasiter

1998

 Let those wonderful words of God as uttered by the Apostle Paul sing in your inner being, -"There is therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."(Rom.8:1) Where there is no condemnation, there is no sentence imposed. This brings to mind the time when a young woman caught in the act of adultery was dragged before Jesus by Jewish religious leaders. They demanded her death by stoning as required by law, then asked Jesus, -"What do You say?" Jesus answered,"Let he without sin cast the first stone." Being self-convicted, one by one they left, leaving her alone before the Lord who asked, "Where are they that accuse you?" Then He said, "Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more." (John 8:11)  

Notice carefully, that although Jesus forgave her of the sin, He commanded that she stop committing the sin of adultery. Hebrews 10 tells us that those who continue to sin willfully will not be forgiven but suffer the judgment, and can expect to perish in the Lake of Fire!  

But it is God's will that we be forgiven, and as long as we strive to live according to His will, He will do the rest through our Messiah, Jesus.  

Once we are in Christ, through repentance ,baptism, and the receiving of the holy spirit, we are God's own children, and friends of Jesus. We now address Him, as our Father in prayer, and He regards us as His blessed and holy children. Notice Romans 8:14-16 "For all who are being led by the spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out "Abba! Father!" The spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God."  

If you are in Christ, God is crazy about you! To put it further in the vernacular, -He is head over heels in love with you! And He wants a close personal relationship with you. That is why it is so important to strive to live a holy life. Sin separates us from our heavenly Father. Remember, even in the case of Jesus, who was God's Son before the foundation of the world - separation occurred when the sins of humanity were placed upon His shoulders. At that very moment, Jesus cried out, -"Eli, Eli, Lama Sabachthani?" Translates to, -"My God, My God, Why have You forsaken Me?"  

James, the brother of Jesus said that if we submit to God and His way of life, then resist the devil, it will enable us to be close to God. This is accomplished by cleansing ourselves of practicing sin.(James 4:7-8)  

Christians sin and are forgiven daily by the cleansing blood of Jesus, but Christians do not live in sin. They do not live outside the Commandments as a way of life. Jesus said, if we want to enter into eternal life we must keep the Commandments. (Matt.19) Indeed, the very definition of what sin is, is "practicing lawlessness", or simply living outside of the Ten Commandments. (1 John 3:4) The first step toward a close relationship with our Heavenly Father is coming to see our need to repent of the lawless way we have been living our life. Repent, simply means to change. It does not mean to besorry for what we do but never change. There is no forgiveness there.  

As Christians, we were once dead in our sins, as the woman caught in adultery was, but thanks be to God and our Lord Jesus, we have been pardoned. Pardoned, yes, but with the same instruction given her, "Go and practice sin no more."  

Notice 1 John 3:7-10, -"Little children, let no one deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil. No one who is born (begotten) of God practices sin, because His Seed (holy spirit) abides in him; and he cannot (practice) sin, because he is born (begotten) of God. By this the children of the devil are obvious; any one who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother."  

The holy spirit in us helps us to see and understand how truly evil sin is. The holy spirit is God in us, giving us the ability to experience His feelings toward sin.  

God sent His only Son to die for your sins and mine didn't He? What Jesus endured was horrible and almost beyond belief. He was betrayed, beaten so badly His flesh hung like ribbons and His bones were exposed, He was mocked, spat on and cruelly nailed to a cross to die. He could have called thousands of Angels at any given moment to rescue Him, but He didn't. He said that no one was taking His life, but that He was willingly laying it down for you and me.  

God the Father and Jesus the Son, knew this day would come, they had planned it from before the foundation of the world.(Rev.13:8) Even so, it was one of God's most dreaded days. A time when the Father and Son would be separated for the first time. Though Jesus was willing to suffer because of sinful man, it was extremely difficult. After the Passover, Jesus took Peter, James and John with Him into the garden of Gethsemane to keep watch while He prayed. Being deeply grieved and distressed He said to them, -"My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me."(Matt. 26:38) In prayer so intense great drops of blood fell from His troubled forehead, He asked, -"If it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as Thou wilt." But my friends, it wasn't possible, was it? Our sins were so ugly and vile to God, that our Lord had to suffer such a death as that to save us.  

Have you ever asked yourself, -"What sins?" Just what were the sins I was committing that separated me from my Father, and that were so bad that Jesus had to suffer so horribly to cleanse me of them? Simply put, it is because we practiced breaking the Ten Commandments.  

Have you always loved God, putting Him first in your life? (First Commandment) Have you ever had images or objects of worship in your home. Not just a pagan image but any image used to worship.Remember, the bronze serpent that Moses made, which God commanded, was later used as an object of worship to God's displeasure.(2 Kings 18:4) (Second Commandment) Have you ever taken God's Name in vain or used it in a careless way? (Third Commandment) Have you ever practiced not keeping the Seventh-day Sabbath? (Fourth Commandment) Have you practiced disobeying or dishonoring your parents? Jesus said, to lightly esteem (curse) your parents makes you worthy of death! (Fifth Commandment) Have you ever murdered? Jesus said to hate another is to have murder in your heart. (Sixth Commandment) Have you ever committed adultery? Practiced sex outside of marriage? Entertained sexual lust in your heart? (Seventh Commandment) Have you ever stolen from someone? Not paying your debts is stealing. Not paying your tithes or giving offerings is stealing from God. (Malachi 3) Have you ever taken something from work without authorization? (Eighth Commandment) Have you ever given false testimony about someone. Perhaps you repeated what someone else told you that turned out to be untrue? If you have misrepresented the truth, you have lied. (Ninth Commandment) Have you ever coveted? Have you ever simply wanted what someone else had? The Apostle Paul said that he would not have even known coveting was a sin had the law not identified it as such. (Rom.7:7)  

When we consider these Commandments, we must understand that breaking any one of them as away of life is enough to cause you to be dead in your sins. Thus said, If you haven't always put God first, -Jesus died for that sin. If you haven't always kept the Sabbath holy, -Jesus suffered and died for that sin. If you have practiced sex outside of marriage, -Jesus died for that sin of yours. If you have hated your brother, lied or wanted what someone else had, -Jesus died for those sins you committed, etc.  

God so loved you and me that He gave His only begotten Son in order that we might pass from death to life, in order that we not perish but have everlasting life.( John 3:16) And as long as we stay in Jesus, we are victorious and have become conquerors. Through Jesus we conquer the desires of the flesh which lead to death. Jesus has paid for our sins in full, past, present and future. What a great God we serve! If we don't quench the holy spirit, it will give us the ability and even the desire to crucify the temptations of the flesh. Simply resist the devil and he will flee!  

John says if we say "we do not sin," we deceive ourselves. (1 John 1:8-10) But he also writes that the Christian does not practice sin. (1 John 3:9) To reconcile these two verses, we conclude as Paul preached, we all sin and come short of the glory of God, but if we don't practice sin as a way of life, sin is not imputed to us. And although we strive to live undefiled and holy lives, we realize that our righteousness is as filthy rags compared to the righteousness of God.  

We stand in victory because Christ has taken our sins and given us His righteousness. Notice Paul in2 Corinthians 5:21, -"He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." When we kneel before God's throne in prayer, we appear before our Father clothed with the righteousness of Christ. It is not our human condition, nor the present condition of our own character, but the position we have been given through the wondrous sacrifice of the Lord. Our CONDITION is not worthy, it is being worked on by the power of the holy spirit. We are being transformed by the renewing of our minds, bringing us into complete conformity with the Father and the Son. But our POSITION is one of purity, holiness, sanctification and righteousness. It is as if being washed with the blood of the Lamb is to be covered by a spotless linen cloth. It is this that the Father sees, it is our POSITION, one of forgiven and pure, while underneath our CONDITION is being cleansed and worked on through the holy spirit.  

David says a righteous person is like a tree planted by the water. Notice that the mightiest Oaks begin as a small acorn. An acorn that holds its ground will someday become a mighty Oak tree. So it is with us that possess the "Seed" of eternal life, which is the holy spirit. It is transforming us from an "acorn" to a "mighty tree."  

The contrast between Jesus and Lucifer is as the difference between light and darkness. Lucifer was given glory and honor in Heaven. He walked among the very throne of God. (Ezek.28) Yet he wanted more. He desired the throne of God and sought to take it by force. He thought, -"I will ascend and establish my throne in Heaven." (Isa.14)  

We see by the Scriptures that Jesus was God, the Son. It was He that actually created all things.(John 1) Yet He was willing to lay down His holy and perfect life in order that others may live.  

Lucifer sought his own glory. Jesus died to bring many sons to glory. Philippians 2 tells us that He "did not think equality with God a thing to be grasped." Another rendering is -"He did not think equality with God should be selfishly sought." As Lucifer sought his own glory saying, "I will be like the Most High." Lucifer tried to "ascend", Jesus "descended" became a mortal man, overcame the devil's temptation to live a sinless life, then gave His life to receive our sins, and to bestow His righteousness, on us. Lucifer sought after divinity, Jesus emptied Himself of divinity and destroyed the works of the devil as a mere man! Jesus is VICTORIOUS!  

"When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him." (Colossians 2:15) Through which Jesus has canceled out the debt of our transgressions. (vs 13-14)  

Let us live with the knowledge that as long as we abide in His way of life, we are victorious. When the devil reminds us of our past, we will remind him of his future! When he seeks to engender doubt, we say "Faith sees the invisible, Believes the incredible and Receives the impossible!" And when he lays claim to us, we say, -"I've been bought and washed with the blood of the Lamb, get your filthy hands off! Begone Satan! I have VICTORY IN JESUS!" 

 

 

 

Points of Truth Ministries