Some Christians today believe that victory in Christ means getting what we want – our own will – and fulfilling our own hearts’ desires. Others completely misinterpret Psalm 37:4, which says “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” as a way to get God to surrender to their own plans and requirements.
There are some who believe victory in Christ is when God helps solve a problem in any area of life, helping them overcome a particular issue. Several more think of it as bringing the good news to other people, period.
While these suggestions may be encompassing victory in Christ, it is also possible for all of those things to take place, and the Christian could still not experience victory in Christ that much.
According to the Bible, victory in Christ means God is on the throne of someone’s heart, His will be done for His glory in that person’s life. Anything less than that is not considered real victory in Christ Jesus.
Let’s take a look at 1 Corinthians 15:54-57.
54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
55 “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 54 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
First, the Apostle Paul described a Christian’s experience of victory, straightforwardly saying that God gives us the victory through His Son Jesus. That is as simple as it can get. We have victory only through Christ from God.
Secondly, Paul also told when victory happens. He said, “When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable…” When “Death has been swallowed up” through Christ’s resurrection, and we have it in us, then we experience real victory.
How does it work in the practical sense? Why are there still struggles, trials, and temptations in life even though I’ve already received God through Christ as Lord and Savior of my life?
Because victory in Christ is directly proportional to how much a Christian surrenders his will in exchange for the will of God in his life.
Jesus Christ must first get complete victory over us in order for us to experience complete victory over our lives.
Again, Paul said that God gives us victory only through the Lord Jesus Christ. It is only when Jesus becomes your Lord in every aspect, in every situation, in every decision you make, that you can experience real victory in life.
In other words, you are not lord of anything… you don’t have authority over anything, you cannot control your own life or the life of others to only experience good things… until Jesus Christ has complete authority and control as Lord over your life.
This is the wonderful Truth of the above passage, victory is the outcome of a life swallowing death because of Christ’s resurrection power over your life.
We can only live in victory because Christ has victory over us.
It is incredible to hear someone teaching victory in Christ as something that God simply gives us because we need it, and not teaching that we have to have a completely surrendered life to Him before it can be truly experienced.
It is futile for us to try and get God do something for us – to get Him to bow down to our plans and visions. Anyone can spend years and years praying for God to do this or do that, or give me this or give me that, or to get Him on board to a specific church program or activity.
In truth, it is the other way around… God is waiting for us to surrender to His will and get on board His program.
There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death. – Proverbs 16:25
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. – Proverbs 19:21
Therefore, a follower of Christ must be careful about his plans, his goals, and his will in life. Are they all aligned with God’s will and purpose? Are they God’s will and purpose for your life?
Seeking and doing anything other than that will not give you complete victory in life. God wants our will to turn into His will, and it is not possible unless we submit our own will into His hands and let go.
God does not sit in heaven and wait for us to offer Him requests, commands, suggestions, instructions, demands, or appeals. More accurately, He is constantly trying to reveal His will for our lives, only if we are silent and humble enough to hear it.
3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, 4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. – 1 John 5:3-5
Hence, it is clear that achieving victory in Christ means totally surrendering to God Himself. Some have a hard time doing it and expect to become victorious otherwise. It is simply not possible.
Victory is in Christ Jesus… only if we are under Him and He is over us.
So, if you want to know why there are still struggles, pains, trials, and temptations over a Christian’s life, this is the answer: We must be completely conquered by Jesus Christ in order for us to become “more than conquerors through him who loved us.” (Romans 8:37)