Thursday 26 Apr 2018
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Psalm 1: 2-3

Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.

More than a conqueror

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No in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us- Romans 8:37.

It is only those who have been to war and return home triumphantly that would probably be able to adequately capture the message behind this scripture verse. Likewise, it is those who have stared defeat in the face and have close to the brink at sometime in their life who would really be able to describe what it feels like to be a conqueror never mind being called 'More than a conqueror'. Nevertheless, the scripture declared that as citizens of the Kingdom we are; 'More than a conquerors'.

For those of us who have never been to war, we need not be robbed or denied the opportunity to experience the elation and the full impact of being declared 'More than conquerors', Apostle Paul in his letters to the Church gave a number of reasons which if we pause to meditate over, would go a long way in helping us to appreciate why the scripture refers to us as being 'More than conquerors'. I want you to see this is an attitudinal issue which affects every citizen in the Kingdom.

You see this is the attitude that we are expected to have and the way we are expected to perceive ourselves, at all times, irrespective of what we are going through. As citizens of the kingdom we dare not see ourselves anything short of this, doing so means only one thing, we have no clue what we have been delivered from nor do we have the faintest idea what we have become in our union with Christ. Sadly to say though, many believers struggle to put on this attitude, no wonder they walk around like aliens in the kingdom and it is no surprise that they walk defeated even when they are supposed to be more than conquerors.

In other for us to fully grasp the message of this scripture as well as the obligation which it demands from us as the citizens of the kingdom, we would need to visit the Old Testament by reviewing the reason why the whole of the people who came out of Egypt could not make it to the promise land except for Joshua and Caleb. You see after God had demonstrated his power in their presence by delivering them from Egypt with his mighty hands, after he had parted the sea for them to walk on land while drowning the armies of Egypt in the same sea, God expected a shift in their attitude. After he had fed them with manna, meat and satisfied their thirst with water from the rock, he expected a shift in their attitude from the one when they were defeated and were in bondage. He expected them to take on a new attitude as they march towards their inheritance. You see although they have the promise of inheritance, they would never get it without a shift in attitude. So what is this new attitude you may ask? Well the two people who made it to the promised land gave us a glimpse of what the new attitude looks like but before revealing this new attitude let us look at the defeatist attitude with which they left Egypt;

And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.- Numbers 13:33.

With this sort of attitude there was no need to go to war, they were already defeated, if after seeing all that the Lord had done and they still see themselves in the light of the testimony above, then there was no way they were going to inherit the land. The only thing they stood to inherit was a sound defeat. If after all the Lord had done for them, they still see themselves as grasshoppers, then their attitude it was that cut them off from their inheritance, it surely wasn’t God.

Now let us contrast this attitude with that of Joshua and Caleb;

And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.-Numbers13:30.

If the LORD delight in us, then he will bring us into this land, and give it us; a land which floweth with milk and honey. Only rebel not ye against the LORD, neither fear ye the people of the land; for they are bread for us: their defence is departed from them, and the LORD is with us: fear them not. - Number 14:8-9.

How did this benefit them you may ask? You see I want you to know that even when God pronounces his blessings it must still be in line with the principles of his kingdom. Let us therefore hear what God said in response to the sort of attitude displayed by this duo.

But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully, him will I bring into the land whereinto he went; and his seed shall possess it. - Numbers 14:24.

It was the attitude they displayed that earned them their inheritance, it delivered them into the promise land, it met with the standard and the principle of the Kingdom. How is this related to us who are under the New Testament?

We really do need to understand that we are on a journey similar to that which the Israelites undertook over 4,000 years ago, they were heading towards their promised inheritance, so are we too. For there still remains the promise to give rest to the people of God:

There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His – Hebrews 4:9-10

And when we look at the phases of the journey we would see glaring similarities.

a. They were delivered from bondage in Egypt so we also were. We who were once lost in sin, sold as slaves to sin and under the power of the prince of the air, held against our will by the law of sin and death, God through Jesus brought salvation to us with a promise to deliver us to a place of rest in him.

He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood,[c] the forgiv eness of sins. –Colossians 1:13 -14.

b. They were chosen by God to be his people, they were chosen to enjoy God's favour and they were recipients of his affection promised them through Abraham, Isaac and Jacob cemented through the covenant he had with Abraham. So we also are, predestined and foreknown by God, Chosen and called in Christ, sanctified by the blood of the Messiah. Speaking about that God has for us, the scripture declared that nothing can separate us from that love that is revealed to us in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:39).

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 – Romans 8:39.

This it must be said is similar to the message God passed to Israel through Isaiah, using the illustration of the bond between the mother and child, declaring to them that even if it were possible for a mother to abandon her child, he would not abandon his people as his love for them would not permit it.

c. God it was who was fighting on their side, God was for them waging war against all of their enemies, this is not different from our situation, because the scripture testifies that we also have God on our side

If God be for us, who can be against us - Romans 8:31b.

Not only is God fighting on our side but we also have assured victory in him.

d. God it was who provided for them all through the journey, such was his provision for them even in the wilderness such that they did not suffer from any form of lack. He also is the one who has promised to supply all of our needs in Christ Jesus, he is the one the scripture assured us would exceed all our expectations and he is the one the scripture declared thus;

Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won't he also give us everything else? - Romans 8:32.

It was the summary of these blessings that we have as our inheritance from God in our union with Christ, that delivered us into that place where we all need to put on the attitude of one who is 'More than a conqueror', why? Well because we are in a win - win situation. We simply cannot lose as long as we do not let go of this attitude.

But this attitude may sound like I am boasting you may say, to which I would reply do not be in haste to make such judgement, you need to be wary of the religious spirit. This is a spirit that is sent on a mission by the enemy to rob the citizens of the kingdom of their inheritance without their knowledge. I want you to know that such an attitude would be only be boastful if it does not recognise that the position of victory declared was made possible by God through Christ. The attitude 'More than a conqueror' does not celebrate self victory, rather it rejoices in the victory that came through Christ and Christ alone.

This attitude boasts only in what God and God alone has done, the focus of this attitude is on what the Lord did and would always do. There is nothing wrong in boasting in the Lord and what he can do, because such boasting is not premised on shaky grounds, rather it is premised on solid foundation and it is an act of worship that gives all the glory to God. Let us look at the words of Caleb once again;

If the LORD delight in us, then he will bring us into this land, and give it us; a land which floweth with milk and honey. Only rebel not ye against the LORD, neither fear ye the people of the land; for they are bread for us: their defence is departed from them, and the LORD is with us: fear them not. - Number 14:8-9.