Have you ever listened to a preacher tell you that you are and should be an overcomer? Ever wondered what this really means and looks like?
Is an overcomer someone whose life looks perfect because they have wealth, health, riches, beauty and status? Does it have anything to do with someone’s well-being or position in life? No, absolutely not!
Remember this, Jesus said that the kingdom of God cannot be observed through that which is natural or seen with the physical eye. There are millions of people all over the globe who have wealth, riches, status, etc. However, they are not born of God, they have no relationship with Him, and no desire to serve Him. In short, the kingdom of heaven does not reside within them. They do not qualify as an “overcomer” as per the Scriptures.
The word “overcome” means to subdue. It comes from the same root word that we get the Nicolaitans from. It means to prevail against something until you have conquered it. It is the same command that God gave to Adam in the Garden of Eden when He told Him to subdue the earth. The question we need to ask is, “What are we supposed to be subduing?”
As we saw with the Nicolaitans, the Lord hates it when people try and ‘lord it over’ or ‘subdue’ others. No one has a God given right to rule and reign over you, no matter who they are. This does not mean people will not try! You just have to look at the news media to see the spirit of “Nicolaitan” at work in the world. How many times have you felt pressured to do something you don’t want to do or looked at yourself in the mirror and felt like you fall short of the world’s expectations? How often do you get angry, frustrated, or upset because someone does not want to do what you want? I suppose we could call this spirit “bullying!”
Neither does it mean that there won’t be times when you will need to submit under the authority of another. There is a difference between submit and subdue. They do not mean the same thing. To submit is to yield yourself to someone else government or will freely and not through coercion. When you understand the power in submission, submission becomes a joy and not a curse.
Now, just as someone has no right to ‘subdue’ you, you have no right to subdue someone else either.
God instructs you not to fight against, or subdue, another human being. There is only one person that you need to subdue and that is yourself! Not even God presumes to subdue you. He calls for submission, but it must be an act of your own free will. Submission when done by conscious choice, even under harsh and abusive situations, releases the power of the kingdom of heaven to you, and make no mistake, the rewards are great.
In the context of Jesus’ letter to you (Ephesus) He encourages you to overcome your daily activities, both good and bad, by regaining your position of authority through a loving relationship with Him. He prizes this more than anything else. As you grow in a loving and meaningful relationship with the Lord you will find yourself rising above and subduing the things that want to rule your life. Have you ever noticed how busy the demands of your life can make you and how you so blindly just go with the motions of what needs to be taken care of next? Then, at the end of the day you’re too exhausted to think about spending time with Jesus.
This catches us all, so don’t let guilt and condemnation now arise and ‘lord it over’ you either. Overcoming is a process and not a once off act. Developing an intimate relationship with the Lord takes time and effort. Overcoming begins with a conscious act of your will. It will require you to be diligent with a plan and disciplined to carry it out. You will need to change the way you think and behave. Jesus is not talking about overcoming sin, He is talking about you learning to rule over the things that come against you to interfere with your relationship with Him.
And remember, all God is asking of you is to develop a loving relationship with Him. Nothing else.
Next we will go back to the beginning to see where the bully came from …
Have a wonderful day! 😊
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