God has given us everything we need for the victorious Christian life, but we must wake up, suit up, and pray up!
We must appropriate God’s grace, already given to us, heed the wake-up call in the Book of Romans, dress in the righteousness of Jesus Christ, learn to pray “effectually,” and work for unity among believers.
Pastor Adrian Rogers said believers are complete in Christ the moment we are saved, having need of nothing in the spiritual realm. But while God has made provision for us to live the victorious life now and to make an eternal difference, we must fully accept what God has done; we must learn to “possess our possessions.”
The Bible says believers are overcomers, but Pastor Rogers said many of us live like we are overcome. If we are saved by grace, and we are, we must believe that God’s grace is sufficient for the life of victory.
“We live as victims instead of victors. The Bible says those who are born again have a peace that passes understanding and unspeakable joy, but many of us are overwhelmed by worry and anxiety. We don’t live victorious lives because something is missing. There’s a gap between what the Bible says we are in Christ and how we behave in reality.”
In a military regiment, the flag goes out ahead of the soldiers. The soldiers keep step with the flag. The flag bearer does not fall back or change course if the soldiers fall back or go a different direction. If the Bible is like the flag, we need to keep in step with God’s Word, instead of watering down the truth of the Bible to fit our modern lives.
The Word of God says those who believe are already overcomers and conquerors. Peace and joy are the fruit of their salvation. If you’re a believer, you need to make your life match what the Bible says about you.
For more about becoming a conqueror in your spiritual life, read the article, We Are More than Conquerors, and Saved by Grace.
As we seek to live victoriously, we must gear up for spiritual battle. We must take up the clarion call.
“…It is high time to awake out of sleep.”
Likening the call to the midnight ride of Paul Revere, Pastor Rogers noted that the author of Romans says:
“The night is far spent the day is at hand.”
Just as the midnight rider warned people to wake up, shake off the darkness, and dress to obtain victory, Paul continues,
“Let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. “
“Another, invisible war is coming,” Pastor Rogers said. And we need to send out the call for people to wake up. The enemy is upon us and attacking on all sides. But the Church is asleep, snuggled up in her pews with the covers pulled up over her head, and the sanctuary is dark. The Church needs to wake up before it’s too late.”
What time is it on God’s clock? It’s time to wake up, and it’s probably later than most of us realize.
Just like those who heard Paul Revere’s call, we must wake up and get dressed. The body of Christ should be clothed with Christ. He is the righteousness of God, and He has imputed that righteousness to believers.
“But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”
Jesus is the One who rules over us and teaches us how to walk through this life as children of the King. Jesus is the Messiah. He is Lord of lords and King of kings. We are to wear Jesus like a suit of armor—an armor of light. We are part of His dominion.
Pastor Rogers said, “As you go out into this world, you need Jesus. Put on Jesus over your sorrows and around your tears. Put on Jesus over your aches and your pains. Put on Jesus over your failure and your shame. Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and He will be the first thing people notice about you.”
For more about the warning Paul gave to the Roman churches and the need to wake up and suit up, read the article, Wake up to God’s Righteousness.
Prayer is one of the most important spiritual disciplines for the Christian life. Pastor Rogers intentionally used the word “effectually” for the kind of prayer we need today: effectual describes something that produces the desired result in a big way; effective simply gets the job done.
Effectual prayer begins with what Pastor Rogers calls the “divine triangle,” a recognition of the facts stated in Romans 11.
“For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.”
This verse explores the theme of the Bible, Pastor Rogers said. “It speaks of the sovereignty of Almighty God, who brought everything into being, who controls everything, and who will consummate everything.” He was there at the beginning, He is there now, and He will be there in the end:
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”
“I am with you always…”
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End.”
Pastor Rogers used a flight illustration to describe God’s plan for effectual fervent prayer, noting that we are privileged to be seated with Christ.
“In a private airplane, there are two seats in the cockpit. If a licensed pilot invites you to come fly the plane, you sit in one seat, and the pilot sits in the other. You take over the controls, but the pilot is right there alongside you. In a sense, you are flying the airplane. But in reality, you are flying the airplane in cooperation with him, under his instruction, with his encouragement, with his background, and all of his knowledge. He's still flying that airplane, but he's given you the privilege of flying along with him.”
God could do His work without your help or assistance. He could run the whole Universe without you. However, you could not do it without Him, just like you couldn’t fly that airplane without a licensed pilot beside you. You need God’s provision and God’s grace to live the life of a Christian. What a joy it is to cooperate and to have that fellowship with the God of the Universe!
For more about effectual prayer in Christian living, read the article, The Keys to the Fervent Power of Effectual Prayer.
Believers are called to seek peace and pursue it; they are to be victorious in Christ together.
God wants peace in His Church, and the key to peace is unity. You may be a part of a local church body, but if you are a believer, you are also part of God’s universal Church. Paul encouraged the Roman churches to pursue peace:
“Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another.”
One of the things that gives parents great joy is to see their children loving one another. Nothing delights parents more than when their children want to spend time together and enjoy being around each other. Unity in a family makes the family stronger.
The Lord wants His children to love Him and to love all of their brothers and sisters in Christ. God is glorified when His people are unified. Unity in the Church is the desire of the Savior, the delight of the saved, and the dread of Satan, Pastor Rogers said.
“Satan gets nervous when God’s people dwell together in unity because unity brings awesome power. When we go out as one body, anointed with the Holy Spirit, the will of God is accomplished.”
For more about how unity helps us live victoriously, read the article, Seek Peace and Pursue Unity in the Body of Christ.
“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.”
“And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.”
“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”
“Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.”
“The Bible says, concerning the Lord Jesus Christ, that we are complete in Him. We don't have need of anything in the spiritual realm when we are in the Lord Jesus.”
“The Bible says, concerning those of us who are saved, we are overcomers. We don’t need to be overcome; we are victors rather than victims.”
“I want to tell you, there’s another war today, an invisible war, and somebody today needs to be a modern Paul Revere and tell us to wake up…the enemy is upon us, and we need to sound the alarm.“