“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world!” John 16:33 (NKJV)
“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4 (NKJV)
“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 (NKJV)
Unless someone is mentioning the Lord, I flinch when I hear the words “always” or “never.” Unfortunately, these are very prevalent adjectives these days. Turn on the television or eavesdrop on a conversation, and you hear the opinions, “It always happens…”; “She never does…”; “I will never…” This bothers me deeply because, as Christians, we serve a limitless Almighty God Who created our giant universe all the way down to the tiniest atom particle. Not to mention, He fashioned every single unique and unrepeated fingerprint, even when genetic codes transfer eye color, hair color, and even birthmarks through the generations. I’m unsure what makes me sadder - those Christians who should know better than to limit God in their lives and prayers or those who don’t know better because they don’t know Jesus at all.
Imagine a Christian warrior, suited up in shiny Ephesians Chapter 6 armor, standing in the midst of the territory he received by giving his life to Jesus. Mentally, draw a circle around that warrior designating his territory and see a bully enemy coming to steal it away. The bully sets his foot over the line, but our strong warrior emphatically says, “NO!” The bully stops, regroups, and tries a different ploy. He reminds the warrior of past failures and emphasizes that these errors, weaknesses, and foolish mistakes “always” occur, and the warrior is “never” able to catch, resist, or stop them. The warrior begins to wonder, meditate on these fiery darts, lose focus, and quit resisting, and, suddenly, – zap – the enemy has stepped into the warrior’s territory. That space was stolen!
The spiritual weapons Jesus provides us in Ephesians 6 are to be combined with our words, our faith, and our actions under the guidance of the Holy Spirit to advance our warrior territory, to advance the Kingdom to free captives, and to save the lost. Apostle Paul has even assured us of our ability to do this by believing and standing on this truth in Philippians 4:13 (NKJV): “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Before resurrecting, Jesus shared the purpose of His mission and warned His disciples about the challenges His followers face. In John 10:10 (NKJV), Jesus explained, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 16:33 (NKJV) also records His words, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
Followers of Jesus are given spiritual armor and weapons to walk in a spiritual world more abundantly and push past the barriers and limits set up by an enemy. When released in our words, our faith creates opportunity, changes environments and outcomes, and tears down resistance to fullness in our lives. In the faith-building book of Romans, Chapter 4 reminds us that by faith, Abraham, a childless man, believed the words of God that he would be the father of many nations. Those words called forth a change in Abraham’s life that ultimately affected the whole world. Proverbs 18:21 (NKJV) reminds us that words are powerful. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those that love it will eat its fruit.” We want to agree with the positive words and open the door for our limitless God to move in our lives. We want to cast down the negative “never’ and “always,” not giving our consent to those tricks again. It’s always time to be wise with our words!