NUMBERS 33:55-56: “But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell. 56 And I will do to you as I thought to do to them.” (ESV)
OBSERVATION: In life we will either be “Overcomers” – or we will be overcome! There is no middle ground. When someone competes in the Olympics there are not two people who win the gold medal. There is not the gold medal winner and the “kinda” gold medal winner. The difference can be one-one thousandth of a second, but it still divides the winner from the loser. There is an “Overcomer” and there is the one who was overcome.
The question might arise – “Who then can overcome?” When I look at my life it is riddled with success and failure. It is a pathway that is littered with good intentions that have not been realized. Many times I find myself crying out with the Apostle Paul – “For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.” (Romans 7:15 ESV)
So there appears to be an insurmountable tension in my life. I know that I need to be an overcomer, and I don’t want to be overcome, but my attempts to do this are imperfect at the best and many times just a complete failure. Has God called me to do and become something that is unattainable? Is it fair for Him to call me to be an overcomer when He knows that I am so easily overcome?
This is the dilemma of the Christian experience. However, this dilemma does have an answer. It is not found in increased activity or effort. It is only found in increased surrender and humility. The first step to becoming an overcomer is to realize that we cannot do this within our own strength. This is way Paul goes on to say – “So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.” (Romans 7:21-25 ESV)
The call to become an “Overcomer”, to walk in victory over the power of sin and our weak human nature, is only found in Jesus Christ and a daily surrender and dependence upon Him. No one can do it in their own strength. We do not reach a level in our Christian maturity in this life where we say – “Thanks for all the help Jesus, I can take it from here!” NO! We must die daily to our old nature. We must pick up our cross and identify with His completed work on Calvary. We must humble ourselves before His mighty hand and be filled anew with the Holy Spirit. This is the only way we can truly live as “Overcomers”!
God calls us, and God provides for us. It was the same with the Children of Israel. However, they did not choose well. We can learn from their mistakes and make better choices. We can choose to live in the fullness of His provision. We can allow the Spirit of God to overcome in our lives! Paul discovered the blessedness of this provision as he writes – “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1-4 ESV)
Lord, this morning I run to You anew. I know that within myself I do not have the ability to be an overcomer. I also know that YOU HAVE OVERCOME ALL THINGS through your death and resurrection. I choose to surrender my life and my will to You today. I come to humble myself under Your mighty hand! Come and fill me anew with Your Holy Spirit. Let me walk in Your forgiveness, Your pardon, Your presence, and Your victory. Be my “Overcomer” today! In Jesus Name!