Have you ever played basketball in a foreign country? You may discover that, even though you are a mediocre player like me, suddenly you are dominating the court as if you were Michael Jordan. I encountered this startling phenomenon one day as three Israeli friends and I had a very friendly basketball game against six Arab Muslim kids all named Mohammed. The Mohammeds could have used even more Mohammeds, because their lack of ability to play was stunning. The Mohammeds were devastatingly crushed, in spite of our amazingly lousy basketball skills. We overwhelmingly conquered them.
Similarly, we are called “more than conquerors” or “overwhelmingly conquer” in Romans 8:37, NOT because we are so great, but because we have been given victory over sin, death, and the enemy through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. We encounter a startling phenomenon in that we are amazingly lousy sinners, who are complete failures in need of Jesus, but our enemy has been defeated and we are raised up with Christ victorious! And His sacrificial death and His victorious resurrection bring us Salvation (Redemption, Justification, Sanctification, and Glorification) by grace through faith in Him. Jesus delivered a devastatingly crushing blow to Satan, sin, and death at His resurrection from the dead. Look at the two great chapters of 1 Corinthians 15 and Romans 8 which tell us His victory is our victory. His resurrection is our resurrection.
“O Death, Where is your victory? O Death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our LORD Jesus Christ.” – 1 Corinthians 15:55-57
“Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, Yes, rather WHO WAS RAISED, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, of peril, or sword? Just as it is written, “For you sake we are being put to death all day long; we were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” BUT in ALL THESE THINGS we OVERWHELMINGLY CONQUER through HIM WHO LOVED US! – Romans 8:33-37 (emphasis added)
What glorious promises we have in God’s word (2 Peter 1:4)! What glorious victory we have in Christ! We have been bought by His blood, and justified – just as if we have never sinned – and brought so near into His everlasting arms that nothing can separate us, not death or even physical harm. He ever lives to make intercession for us (Hebrews 7:25). God is working sanctification, His transforming power, changing us into the holy image of Christ, because He has given us victory over sin! And God will work glorification, when He transforms this mortal body into an immortal body. Notice that both passages (Romans 8:18-23 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-53) speak of the believer in Christ receiving the glorified, immortal body at the rapture of the church (1 Thessalonians 4:16,17). Both dead and alive will be raised imperishable and immortal, with a new body like the resurrected King has (1 John 3:2)! The rapture and resurrection of our bodies will happen together in the twinkle of an eye!
We all struggle every day in this present life, especially parents trying to raise children to know the Lord and trying to model righteous behavior, without sleep but with constant trials and tribulations with your children. It can be very discouraging at times when my eyes are on my failures as a husband, father, and servant of God; but when I see the RISEN LORD victorious over my sin, death, and the enemy, this keeps me going! That same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead dwells in me, and gives me new life (Romans 8:11). And because we are risen with Him, the apostle Paul exhorts us: “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the LORD, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the LORD.” – 1 Corinthians 15:58
Jesus is returning soon! Lift up your heads for your redemption draws near (Luke 21:28)! Keep on keeping on! Don’t give up! Keep running the race! Your work will be rewarded! Be faithful to the end!
It is as if Jesus stole the basketball from the enemy and just did a three-sixty windmill slam dunk from the foul line, and shattered the backboard in the face of the enemy in the final seconds to win 100 – 0! We are on His winning team! He has already won the greatest victory! Proclaim the Victory of His Resurrection!
Blessings on your family! We are praying for you!