The Overcomer’s Reward
H. A. L. T=Heartbreak.Aggravation. Lies. Temptations. These are weak unguarded emotions where Satan quickly invades the mind to interrupt our faith. Before you act, HALT!
What did Jesus mean in John 16:33when He said, “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world?” Jesus spoke this prophetic statement before He allowed His body to be nailed to the Cross. He might have used the language of the time and region, which was Greek. Toprovide a clear understanding of what it means to “overcome,” I present the results of a concise Hebrew and Greek word study.
Focusing on the context of John 16:33, according to blueletterbible.com, overcome in Hebrew is the word, “halam.” “Halam” means “smite, break down, break, beat down”. A second Hebrew word, “lacham,” means “fight, to war, make war, eat, devoured, ever prevail.”
Considering John 16:33 was translated from Greek to English, as the entire New Testament is, the Greek word for overcome is “heet-tow-my,” which means “be inferior.” A second Greek word for the term is “kat-ay-rio,” which means “exercise dominion over, be lord over, exercise lordship over.” A third Greek definition for the word is “ni-kaw,” which means “conquer, prevail, get the victory.”
From these definitions, the Hebrew word “lacham” and the Greek word “ni-kaw” contain one commonality: “prevail.” Blueletterbible.com defines “prevail” as “to conquer.”
During Jesus’ three-year ministry, He not only preached the Kingdom of Heaven, but He also taught and demonstrated the governing powers ruling His Kingdom. The governor of the Kingdom of Heaven is the Holy Spirit of the Father. The Holy Spirit of the Father is love, goodness, kindness, peace, Joy, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. In other words, Jesus was able to overcome or conquer or prevail over an evil world by demonstrating the attributes of the Holy Spirit.
Through His compassionate attributes, Christ healed, restored, and resurrected people. He is well known for such things because of who He is. In that light, here are two of the least obvious examples demonstrating how Jesus gave His Spiritual gifts to overcome the world.
Luke 22:50-51 in the King James Bible reads: “And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear. And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. Andhe touched his ear, and healed him.” Notice the warning Jesus gave the Roman soldier? “Suffer ye, thus far.” Jesus forewarned that man of a future and more intensified kind of suffering to come.
The second least obvious example demonstrating how Jesus’ Holy Spirit prevailed over the world is Luke 23:34: “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.”
Overcoming the world using the fruits of the Holy Ghost is God’s assignment for all born-again believers in Christ. We are to “walk by faith; not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7), giving love, and dispensing goodness and kindness everywhere we go. We, as believers, are destined to confront diverse “tribulations.” No matter what the devil uses against us, God in Christ expects and empowers His people to prevail.
However, many believers, for what is commonly accepted as “mental illness,” quit the Christian race before reaching the finish line. Many either abandon their faith for worldly preferences or they evict the Holy Spirit and self-murder to escape life. A recent example is the suicide death of Pastor Jarrid Wilson. His story, like the woman whose funeral he had officiated, is common these days. Conflicting opinions venture to explain why, and whether Wilson and likeminded others are in heaven. But is mental illness a justifiable reason for dismissing why Christ went to the Cross or is it a go-to excuse behind which to hide embarrassingly painful truth?
The world needs more love! Therefore, living in Christ is never living in vain. What it means to live in Christ is the same as surrendering our will to His. The rewards God has in store for us are virtually inconceivable to our finite minds. However, He has given us detailed insights into what we can expect to receive for our faithful due diligence.
God expects His believers to win! Here is our confidence. I John5:4-5 states, “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?”
These two passages explain and help us comprehend that because of our faith in knowing Jesus is the Son of God, we have the Spirit of love, goodness, and kindness indwelling us. This means the Holy Spirit will lead, teach, and empower us to overcome the world!
The most exciting good news is what the book of Revelation teaches us who are destined and determined to prevail.
We get to eat the produce of “the tree of life” (Revelation 2:7)
We “shall not be hurt of the second death” (Revelation 2:11)
We get to “be clothed in white raiment;” our names will forever remain written in the book of life, and Jesus will “confess our names in front of our Heavenly Father, and his angels” (Revelation 3:5).
Jesus will make us “a pillar in the temple of God and we shall remain inside God’s temple! He’ll engrave upon us God’s name, His new name, and the name of His Holy City, New Jerusalam” (Revelation 3:12).
“To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne” (Revelation 3:21).
“He that overcometh shall inherit all things; I will be his God, and he shall be my son” (Revelation 21:7).
Every new creature in Christ is born-again to be an overcomer!
After learning all the benefits of following Christ Jesus, how much more determined should we be overcome this evil world? As joint heirswith Christ, we’d be foolish to gain the whole world and lose our souls to temporarily possess corruptible material things. Is it easy walking the straight and narrow path set before us? HECK NO! Is it worth trying to keep walking even though we fall andget back up again? HECK YES!
Our exceeding great rewardcomes by resisting the deceptive philosophies and tricks Satan uses to invade our minds. The truth of Christ never fails! Life as His believers is challenging but sweet as we endeavor to overcome the world. Sharing and living the Holy Spirit of love, goodness, and kindness is our strategy of faith to achieve glorious everlasting victory!
H. A. L. T= Heartbreak. Aggravation. Lies. Temptations. These are weak and unguarded emotions where Satan quickly invades the mind to interrupt our faith. Before you act, HALT! Employ the attributes of Christ. Use the fruits of His Spirit to help you overcome the world.