Overcome the world
“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” 1 John 5:4
This is a great promise from God and so important to understand. He promises in 1 John that anything born of God can overcome the world. However, it is not automatic, so He tells us how . . . it’s by faith! Any other way just doesn’t work. Overcoming power doesn’t come by wishing, it doesn’t come by hoping, and it doesn’t even come by praying, it only comes by faith.
This is a guarantee in life. When things come into your life that get in the way or stop kingdom progress, they need to be overcome! If overcoming isn’t happening, and you find yourself in the same predicament day after month after year, don’t give up, but reevaluate your faith. God is the faithful one, so if it looks like someone is missing it, then it probably isn’t God.
Let’s look at some examples of faith and see the pattern that faith follows. Abraham obeyed God when God told him to leave his homeland and go to the place God would show him. He didn’t know where he was going, but his obedience was his faith in action. God told Abraham to sacrifice his promised son, Isaac. Abraham didn’t know how God would make him the father of many nations without a son, but scripture tells us that he believed God would raise him up if necessary. (Heb. 11:19) Once again, his obedience was a step of faith. Moses acted in faith when he obeyed God by going back to Egypt and confronting pharaoh. He didn’t know if it was going to work, in fact, it didn’t look like it was working at all. It took ten plagues and then pharaoh changed his mind, anyway. Yet Moses obeyed God by faith. The fact is that all through the scriptures God spoke and then people obeyed giving us a clear example of how faith works.
On the other extreme there are examples where people acted when God gave a promise, but they didn’t wait for the direction. Sara just took the promise God gave and ran with it. The result was an Ishmael. God didn’t promise an Ishmael. This is a clear example of why it is so important to get the direction from God and not try to make it happen in your own strength.
The point is, we cannot pray and pray and pray and then wonder why it looks like God isn’t doing something. The reason we are praying about our dilemma is to get God’s direction and our next step, not for Him to fix it all in a moment. It would be wonderful if it did work that way and sometimes it looks like it does. However, God wants to lead us through our obstacles step by step so He has connection with us. It is all about our relationship. His desire is to take our hand and walk us through every part of our life.
Now we’re back to the question, “how do we hear from God?” It has to be on purpose. Get alone with Him. Set time aside to talk with Him and take time to listen to Him. Ask Him for scripture to back up what you think you hear him saying. (Don’t’ be surprised if God’s direction doesn’t make sense to you. God’s ways are higher and much different than ours.) This may take a little practice, so my suggestion would be to learn to hear from God in little things first. Get to know the sound of His voice on the inside of you by talking to Him about things you already know the answers to or simply by telling Him you love Him and then listen with your spirit for His response. Ask Him to show you scripture meanings as you are reading them. Here’s a thought, how about asking Him to teach you how to hear His voice and direction.
Today I want to encourage you to walk by faith. Obey the next steps God is showing you to take to get the answer you need and are longing for. Make it a priority each day to listen and hear direction from God and remember, faith without works (obedience) is dead. (James 2:26) See an overcoming victory today by taking steps of faith in your obedience to your Heavenly Father’s direction. Then you will be guaranteed to see a victory!
Today’s scripture reading: 1 John 5:4-8