The only one in authority to define victory in a given battle is the general in charge. The only one in authority to determine what a spiritual victory is, is God. We’ve all heard the ‘I feel like I did really good’ speeches from friends, family, or acquaintances, which usually prefaces why they feel they failed in a given pursuit or endeavor. Once the story unravels and more details are known, you typically come to suspect that even they don’t believe they did really well or that they even tried to accomplish what they’d set out.
My opinion as to whether or not I succeeded is arbitrary and
will always tilt toward making allowances for myself. I will always see my
endeavors, my striving, my attempts, and my consistency in the best of lights
because the ego tries to protect itself at the expense of facts more often than
we would like to acknowledge. God’s conclusion is not arbitrary, however, and
when He defines victory for the believer, that is the standard toward which we
Revelation 12:9-11, “So the great dragon was cast out, that
serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he
was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. Then I heard a
loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of
our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our
brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony,
and they did not love their lives to the death.’”
Not only is the Word clear on how God defines victory, but it
also underlines why He is the one who gets to do it. Because victory can only
be had by the blood of the Lamb, no one can claim they are victorious without
it or independent of it. That’s why it’s wise to be skeptical whenever someone
insists they’ve been victorious through a given program or a handful of steps
because the Bible is clear that without the blood of Christ, no victory can be
That’s not to say some people don’t trick themselves into
believing they are victorious; some even do it for a protracted period, but
save for the blood of Christ, any perceived victory is an illusion. Morality
may keep you out of prison, but only the blood of Christ can keep you out of
There are moral people, some more moral than certain professing
Christians who, save for repentance and being made clean in the blood of
Christ, will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Morality isn’t salvific. Being
washed in the blood of Christ is. Having been washed in the blood of Christ,
the subsequent fruit of said transformation become evident.
When the rich young ruler came to Christ asking what he
needed to do in order to have eternal life, he was already keeping every
commandment Jesus told him he should keep. He checked every box, he was moral by
the standard of the law, but then Jesus told him he must do something that was
not contained within the law itself.
Nowhere in the law does it say you should sell what you have
and give it to the poor, yet it’s what Jesus asked of the young man because He
knew that’s what his heart was tethered to. You can do all the right things,
the moral things, the lawful things, yet, if your heart does not wholly belong
to Him, if you are not made new, born again, and made clean, true victory will
always be out of reach.
God’s promise of victory is declarative and prescriptive. Not
only does God promise you’ll be victorious, but He also tells you how you’re
going to do it. Like any tactician, He has identified the weaknesses and
reinforced them. He has identified the enemy’s line of attack, so you might not
be caught unaware. He provided the weapons, the training, and the gear, and all
that’s needed is for you to follow orders.
I can only imagine how frustrating it must be to have the
promise of victory, to have the means of victory, to have the roadmap to
victory, and yet see so many wallow in defeat, a hair’s breadth away from
giving up because the enemy wormed its way in and made them believe their
situation was hopeless.
The enemy knows that the only way to keep you from having
victory, the only way to keep you from standing on the promise of God that you
will, is to convince you to give up. As long as you put one foot in front of
the other, as long as you press in, as long as you faithfully follow even when
the road gets hard, victory is assured.
That’s not to say victory is effortless. It is incumbent upon you to fight the good fight, to finish the race, and to keep the faith. No one can do it for you. These are not things you can outsource or hire out; these are things you must do in order to receive the crown of righteousness on that Day.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea, Jr.