I JOHN 5:1-4: “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of him. This is how we know that we love God’s children: when we love God and obey his commands. For this is what love for God is: to keep his commands. And his commands are not a burden, because everyone who has been born of God conquers the world. This is the victory that has conquered the world: our faith.” CSB
OBSERVATION: Do you like to win? I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t enjoy experiencing victory. All you have to do is look at the faces of a winning team, or someone who wins a prize at the fair. Everyone likes to win!
Yet, there is something more important than winning a sporting event or a prize at a carnival game. It is winning in life. And, winning in life is not about our achievements. It is about the ability to walk in freedom and victory over the power of sin, temptation, and the enemy of our souls. This is truly winning!
Like any challenge, life is mixed with wins and losses. Sometimes it is our losses that make us forget the pathway to true victory. In the opening verses of I John chapter five, the Apostle John reminds us of the dynamics that lead to a victorious life.
Winning begins with being part of a winning team. John puts it this way,
- “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of him.”
We have all seen the heartbreak of a star athlete, who had championship skills, but was part of the wrong team. The only way we can truly win in life is to be a part of God’s family. And, the only way to be a part of God’s family is to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, who died for our sins and rose again from the dead. We cannot claim to be God’s child if we do not honor the Son!
Winning continues as we walk in love. God is love, and we are called to love God and love one another. How do we know if we are truly loving one another and loving God as He desires? John continues,
- “This is how we know that we love God’s children: when we love God and obey his commands. For this is what love for God is: to keep his commands. And his commands are not a burden, because everyone who has been born of God conquers the world.”
We cannot claim to be walking in love if we are not loving our brother and if we are not obeying God’s commands. These two go hand in hand. Jesus’ teachings in the Gospel of John reinforce this truth.
- “The one who has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. And the one who loves me will be loved by my Father. I also will love him and will reveal myself to him.” John 14:21 CSB
- “If you keep my commands you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. “I have told you these things so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete. “This is my command: Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:10-13 CSB
And, here is the wonderful truth. His commandments are not a burden. They are not heavy weights that keep us from enjoying life. They are not the burdens of the Scribes and Pharisees. They are the words of life that lead us into freedom and victory!
- “His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. By these he has given us very great and precious promises, so that through them you may share in the divine nature, escaping the corruption that is in the world because of evil desire.” 2 Peter 1:3-4 CSB
Finally, winning is the natural experience of one who is walking in faith.
- “This is the victory that has conquered the world: our faith.”
Faith is the assurance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. We are saved by grace through faith in the provision of Christ. Even though we do not see Him we believe. And, we do not believe blindly. We have the sure testimony of His Word and the guarantee of the Holy Spirit living inside of us. We are saved through faith, we walk in faith, and we overcome by faith! We know that HE IS and that HE IS always a rewarded of those who diligently seek Him!
- “Now without faith it is impossible to please God, since the one who draws near to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” Hebrews 11:6 CSB
- “I have written to you, children, because you have come to know the Father. I have written to you, fathers, because you have come to know the one who is from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, God’s word remains in you, and you have conquered the evil one.” 1 John 2:14 CSB
Father, thank You for the victory that You have provided to me through Jesus Christ my Lord! Help me to walk in love, to obey your commands, and to win the battles I face today by faith!
- “I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20 CSB
In Jesus Name!