VICTORY THROUGH JESUS' GRACE
WE HAVE VICTORY THROUGH GRACE AND RIGHTEOUSNESS (Plus nine points of victory)
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WE ARE JESUS FOCUSED
God is good and God is love, He expressed His love in and through Jesus & His defeat of Satan by the Cross. Through Jesus we have victory over all evil but sadly many Believers still give far too much attention to Satan.When we are established in the Righteousness and Grace of Jesus our attention shifts. The more we set our spiritual eyes are on Jesus, and on who we are in him, things change for the better.Through the cross, we are Righteous, beloved, blessed, healed children of a loving "Abba" Father - this is our victory in Christ!
RIGHTEOUSNESS IS THE KEY TO VICTORY
THE VICTORY OF THE CROSS
Col.2:13-15 He forgave us all our sins having cancelled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Rom.10:4 Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.
These are key scriptures in spiritual warfare as in the past The Law gave Satan legal spiritual rights to attack God's people. This was because the Law was based on our own effort and self righteousness, which always fell short. Self righteousness is by our works, our Law keeping, our ways, our obedience, our sweat, our sacrifice.....it’s all about me, me, me, instead of about God and His ways. The good news is that we are like Abraham and the Righteousness we have from God, through faith in Christ, cannot be overcome by Satan, as through the cross we are perfectly and permanently Righteous through God's gift of grace. Satan no longer has any right to attack us as on the cross Jesus cancelled the Law that had given Satan rights to afflict Believers. If we see these truths and believe them, then Satan and his allies fear, sickness and death, becomes totally powerless in our lives. Be warned, self righteousness is a disaster! This is what the scriptures teach.....
TWO TYPES OF RIGHTEOUSNESS: JOB AND ABRAHAM.
Rom 4:16 Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham's offspring—not only to those who are of the law but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all.
We see the terrible result of self righteousness and self justification in the life of Job (Job.40:8) : In his time, Job was the most righteous man to be found on earth, but his righteousness was a self righteousness based on his own efforts and doings. Job was motivated by fear and not faith in a good God. When Satan sees self righteousness he attacks and test self righteousness, because even Satan knows self righteousness always falls short. God Himself hates self righteousness and God ALLOWS Satan to test any righteousness that is not based on faith in His Saviour and goodness (Job1:8). Job did not trust in God’s goodness and lived in a wrong relationship with God as he had a (wrong) fear of God that denied God’s Grace. Sadly Job was an anxious and fearful man that let his fears control him. The very things that Job feared came upon him (Job3:25). He was fearful because deep down he knew he was depending on his own righteousness (Job40:8). In Job’s case, Satan simply fulfilled what Job was already thinking and fearing. Unlike Abraham, Job had a very low opinion of God's love and goodness. Job always suspected that God was out to punish him and his family for their sins (Job1:5). He did not know God as "Abba" Daddy (Rom8:15) and he was not set free of the fear of God's punishment (1Jn.4:18). After all the arguments and lament, in the end Job acknowledged that he had only known about God but did not know God nor understand God’s ways (Job.42:1-6). When Job repented and turned to God’s grace he was blessed (Job.42:12). In contrast to Job, Abraham had a righteousness from God that was by faith (Gen.15:6) and consequently he heard God, was always protected, blessed and prosperous. Funnily, more Christians seem to identify with Job rather than with Abraham. Who do you see yourself like?
REIGNING IN RIGHTEOUSNESS
Rom.5:17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.
Jesus is our Righteousness, it’s His free gift to all who would believe. To be Righteous means to be in a completely right relationship with God; intimate, sons and daughters who are qualified, forgiven, blessed and empowered by the Spirit. Righteousness means we are justified, which means, it's just as if we had never sinned. When we are firmly established in righteousness we cannot be overcome by the enemy. To reign, is to have authority and control over events and circumstances. Kings reign over their kingdoms and all things are submitted to them. Jesus is our king and we are His representatives ambassadors (small kings) here on earth. When we understand that we are perfectly righteous with God it gives us authority of the King to reign and rule, right here, right now.
ISAIAH PROPHESIED A HIGHWAY OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
Isa. 35:8-9 And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way; wicked fools will not go about on it. No lion will be there, nor will any ferocious beast get up on it; they will not be found there. But only the redeemed will walk there.
Spiritual warfare is all about where you believe you are positioned in Christ. Isaiah prophesied that New Covenant living would be like a highway - a higher way of living. He prophesied a highway of Grace and Righteousness in Christ. When we live in the belief that we are walking on the highway of Jesus’ Righteousness instead of our righteousness, then Satan has no access to us. In the above scripture wild animals represent Satan and his demons. Isaiah states that on the highway of the Lord no lion or wild animals can come. We know what happens on highways, wild animals don’t last long. We have to overcome the lie that Satan has access into our lives and is entitled to attack us. Let’s get it right – Satan must flee from us because Christ lives in us (Gal.2:20), not the other way around.....simply run him down if he gets in your way!
NEW COVENANT: JESUS WAS PUNISHED AND AFFLICTED FOR US
Isa.30:20 (The Old Covenant): Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them. Because of the Cross, what was true under the Old Covenant of the Law is no longer true for those under the New Covenant of Grace, especially with regard to God afflicting us and punishing us.
THE OLD COVENANT: Under this old agreement no one was "Born Again", no one was called a "Child of God", no one was "filled with the Spirit" (The Spirit of God only came upon certain people at certain times), Prophets had to hear God for the People, Priests had to present prayers on the peoples behalf. Righteousness was based good works and perfect Law keeping. Punishment and curses (Deut.28) came upon those those who sinned, backslid and disobeyed until they repented and turned back to God. Adversity, affliction, sickness and hardship was used to train God's people (Isa.30:20). It wasn't good news, as Israel's history proved, they never made the grade and suffered greatly for it (Rom.9:30-10:4).
THE NEW COVENANT: Under this new agreement. Believers are "Born Again" and are a 'New Creation", we are "Children of God" , the Holy Spirit permanently live in us, we have a personal relationship with God, we hear Him and He hears us when we pray. Our righteousness is Jesus and is imputed to us by faith. We are not under the Law. We do good works because we are under grace and not to get right with God. Our punishment and curses where take by Jesus on the cross. God trains and teaches us through the Holy Spirit and by the scriptures not through adversity, affliction and sickness.
So what is the bread of adversity and the water of affliction in a New Covenant sense? Simple, we point to Jesus. His Body suffered adversity and affliction for our sake and it becomes for us the bread of adversity and affliction, and thus the bread of Life as it reminds us of His suffering for us. That's why we regularly celebrate communion. When Jesus was afflicted with the speared in His side on the Cross, the water flowed out along with the blood, this becomes for us the water of affliction.
To walk in victory it is critical for us to be clear which Covenant we are under otherwise we will wrongly believe that God is cursing us, God is making us sick, God is giving us poverty etc. etc. to teach us a lesson and train us. We then justify this wrong belief from scriptures taken from the Old Testament instead of looking to Christ and the Cross. We call Satan's works God's work wrongly suffer instead of standing firm in Christ against Satan's schemes (Eph.6:11)
1Co.1:30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Yes, there are times when we have to take our stand against Satan’s schemes and plans (Eph.6:11). But let’s understand that Satan’s scheme from the beginning, has always been to sow doubt about God's promises (Gen3:1) by speaking lies that sound true. Satan’s biggest scheme is to try to convince us God is punishing us or afflicting us and that he has rights into our lives because we sin or fall short of holiness ....lies, lies, lies. The way he does this is to undermine our righteousness and get us to believe that it is based on our actions instead of on faith. He always tries to undermine our identity as God's children who are loved, blessed and right with God. He always tries to convince us that we are sinners who are unworthy and deserve punishment – which he loves to inflict. Our response when under attack, is simply to point to Jesus Christ and that we are Righteous through Him, our deserved punishment and afflictions are on Jesus on the Cross - this totally disarms and repels Satan. Be aware that Satan can only afflict your life if you allow him to convince you that you are not Righteous and deserve to be punished.
CHRIST IS IN US
1Jn. 4:3 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
Simply put: You have amazing power in you : The person of Jesus. You can overcome any evil spirit, because Jesus HAS already defeated them and Jesus lives inside us by His Spirit. We are never alone. He, who lives in us is greater than any evil. The problem is that most Believers simply can't accept the enormity of this truth. Yet the truth that "Christ Lives In You" is the key to overcoming in every area of life. Jesus, living in us, overcomes both the attacks of the devil and the temptations and of the world.
WE ARE DEAD: CHRIST IN YOU IS NOW YOUR LIFE
Gal.2:20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in of (KJV) the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!"
(MSG) Christ's life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central. It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not "mine," but it is lived by faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. This is an amazing truth and mystery, Christ lives in us and at the same time is seated at God's right hand interceding for us. Christ is constantly there within us, to remind us and heaven that we are now Perfectly Righteous so that we no longer have to prove ourselves Righteous with anyone - including Satan. When Satan tries to accuse us before God just like with Job.1:6-12, Jesus, our great high priest simply intervenes (Heb.7:24-25) to remind all that we are now perfectly Righteous by his blood sacrifice on the Cross, and Jesus, living in us, speaks the same words of Righteousness to us, if we will listen and believe! Our whole live is now Jesus', we are not separate from Him in anyway, we have union with Him, even when we sin. Do not set aside the Grace of God by believing your sin can somehow take Christ out of you. He doesn't come and go based on your actions. He is always in you - you and Christ are welded together by the Spirit. You are clean, sinless, righteous and holy because of Him!
SATAN IS A BLUFFER AND A LIAR
1Pe. 5:8-10 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
At one time under the Old Covenant Satan had rights and had weapons, but no longer! If you have ever been in a bush camp when a lion is prowling around - it is scary, just hearing the roar of a lion makes one afraid. Well this is the kind of scheme Satan employs - he tries to get our attention by making a big noise. Satan loves to scare Believers. He sows fear and anxiety and intimidates us because he knows that when people are afraid they become vulnerable to attack. HOWEVER, Satan is not a lion, the scripture says he acts like a lion - it is all bluff. If he is a lion then he is one that just makes a big noise but actually has no teeth and claws because he has been disarmed through the cross (Col.2:15). He does not have weapons any longer but he does have tools called Fear, Anxiety and Temptation, and he uses these against us. Satan is a conman that cons Believers into giving him power and access that he has no right to. Once we fall for his schemes and lies by listening to him and his fears and anxieties, he jumps in and robs us (Joh.10:10). We need to be like the old evangelist Smiths Wigglesworth, who when the devil appeared to him one night, simply rolled over and went back to sleep as he knew Satan had absolutely no right or business with him.
RIGHTEOUSNESS IS OUR WEAPON
2Co.6:7 ..... in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left...
Our Righteousness in Christ is our weapon against the Devil and when we come under attack we always point to our Righteousness in Christ, this defeats Satan, so speak it out loud and use this truth as a prayer weapon!
NINE PRACTICAL STEPS TO LIVING IN VICTORY
As a born again, Spirit filled Believer, establish yourself by renewing the way you think. Believe the following truths and you will find that Satan will just fade away and try elsewhere.
1) BE MATURE AND ACCEPT THAT YOU ARE PERFECTLY RIGHTEOUS
Rom.4:6-8 David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works: Heb 5:13 Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.
Understanding what true Righteousness is - the key to Grace and Kingdom living. Be mature. Immature infants cannot overcome but adults can fight. Believe you are Right with God in every way. Believe that you are free from all religious laws, are Righteous and this gives you a Right to peace and joy Rom.14:17 . Believe your Righteousness is not based on your actions but on the faith of Jesus. When attacked always declare the truth "I am Righteous in Christ"!
2) STOP LIVING UNDER LAW
1Co. 15:55-58 "Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?" The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you.
Understand that we are in a New Covenant of Grace and not the Old Covenant of Law. Stop mixing the two, believe you are free from the Law. Understand that Believers who live by rules, regulations and the Law give sin, death and Satan rights. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you where you are living legalistically and trying to earn God's favour or prove yourself.
3) ESTABLISH YOURSELF IN GRACE
Rom 5:17 ....to those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness .... Believe you are God's favourite! Know that Grace is the place of God's favour and blessing. Establish yourself in the free gifts of Christ’s Grace and Righteousness. Study the scriptures and seek revelation about Grace and Righteousness. Today grace and righteousness is the KEY REVELATION that the Holy Spirit is teaching the Church. Choose to live in Grace and reject any teaching or thought that opposes Grace and the finished work of the cross. Reject and teaching and belief that God is out to punish you, inflict sickness or bad circumstances on you to teach you a lesson. Loving Fathers simply don't do this to their beloved children, it's a lie and denies the Cross where Jesus took our punishment, curse, sin and sickness.
4) RENEW YOUR THINKING
Rom.7:23 I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members.
2Co. 10:3-5 For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. Believe don't doubt. Understand that most spiritual warfare is in the mind. It's all about repentance - which means a change of mind. Allow the truths and promises found in the scriptures to change your thinking and renew your minds. (Rom.12:2). Replace lies from Satan that have taken hold in your thinking with truths from the scriptures. Reject any thinking or teaching that says Satan, death and sickness ect. have a right to afflict you, is not from God.
5) SEE THAT YOU ARE SINLESS
Rom 4:6 David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works "Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.
Believe that ALL your sins are forgiven, past, present and future - without condition - you don’t to do anything further. Understand the difference between a Sinner and a Saint. A Sinner is and unsaved person. In God's eyes a Sinner is an un-Righteous person who is enslaved by sin. Those who are Righteous in Christ are Saints and this identity no longer dependent on your actions, either good or bad. Talk about yourself as a Saint (Heb.10:10) not a Sinner (that’s what you used to be). You may be a Saint that sometimes sins but that is different from being a Sinner who cannot help but sin. You are not sinless because you never sin, you are sinless because God has chosen to do away with the system of keeping records of peoples sins - that is Grace. Believe that under the New Covenant sin DOES NOT give Satan access or a rights into a born again believers life - he has been completely disarmed and his rights through sin cancelled through the cross. Under the New Covenant God's only issue with your sinful actions is that they hurt and rob His children and others of His blessings and well being. See that under the New Covenant God does not relate to us anymore on the basis of our sin or lack thereof, God now relates to us as sinless children who are Right with Him through Jesus. God remember your sins no more so why should you?
6) BE CLEAR ON YOUR NEW IDENTITY
2Co 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! See yourself as God see you. You are now a new creation in Christ.
See yourself as the beloved, precious child of a loving, good, generous heavenly Father who wishes you no harm and is not angry with you any longer. You have a new identity and a new Father. Accept your inheritance as a Righteous, born again, child of God and receive God given rights. You have rights to access every good promise of the Kingdom - it is your inheritance, right now! Don't let Satan undermine your identity by getting you to focus on your faults, sins and actions. Remember who you are in Christ, a child of a Holy and Awesome God.
7) REJECT ALL ANXIETY AND FEAR
1Pe 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. Understand that there is a strong link between anxiety, the attacks of Satan and suffering. If you are anxious and fearful, you suffer! These emotions and thoughts are all based on unbelief in God's goodness and His free gift of Righteousness (Mat.6:32-34) See that fear and anxiety is rooted in the sin of “Unbelief” - repent and be set free. Allow Grace in Christ to overcome your fear and worry – it’s the key to victory over Satan. Understand that sickness, death and poverty is rooted in unbelief and are manifestation of anxiety, fear, stress and legalistic living. Choose to believe that we are blessed, and blessed, and blessed, in Grace through Christ (Joh1:16).
8) GET HELP FROM GRACE
Heb4:16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Tit.2:11-12 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age.
When we need help we can come to God without fear because we are now in a system of Grace through Jesus. Understand that it is only Grace that enable us to live in a right way (Righteously). See that right living is the fruit of Grace not the product of keeping laws. When Satan attacks come to the throne where Jesus reigns and He gives us the help we need.
9) FINALLY -PUT YOUR EYES ON JESUS
Heb 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Christian living is all about Jesus so take your eyes off Satan and his evil works and fix your gaze on Jesus. The work of the cross is a finished and complete work which gives us victory - if we believe. Jesus is seated at rest in the place of favour and authority at God's right hand, He defends us. He is beautiful, pure, loving and kind, look on Him and find peace, joy and the help you need. Apply these good news truths and see the fruit just grow naturally and without effort. Be victorious and blessed, Garry. www.gracelovetruth.com
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