The Christian life is a life of overcoming and possessing, but it seems to be a well kept secret from many Christians. Nevertheless, it is a fact and is documented as such in the Scriptures. This truth came alive to me again today as I read a passage in Deuteronomy. That passage holds a key to overcoming and possessing. We are going to see what the Lord has to say to us in it, but first we will take a look at a few verses in the New Testament.
There is a message from the Lord to each of the seven churches in the second and third chapters of Revelation. Each message is ended with a special promise to the one that overcomes. If the promise was for “those” who overcome, there would be room for more optimism but instead the promise is for the “one” who overcomes. This leads us to believe that the overcomers are more likely to be a remnant, and other passages of Scripture more than adequately confirms that concept.
The question that comes to mind is: “What do overcomers have to overcome?” Have you ever asked that question? Well, after many years of studying the Scriptures and endeavoring to make them valid in my life, I have come to the conclusion that it is “self” that must be overcome. The greatest hindrance we have as Christians is self, the fallen adamic nature of man. It is ours to overcome our fallen nature and to possess the nature of our Lord Jesus Christ.
II Corinthians 10:3-5 For
though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:
4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds,
5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.
The strongholds that must be pulled down are in us. The imaginations and high things that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God are in our fallen nature. The thoughts that must be captured and brought into the obedience of Christ are in our carnal minds. Our fallen human nature is the battleground, and our enemies are the Canaanites of our flesh. Also, we cannot win this war in our own energies and might. That is why the apostle Paul adds in his epistle to the Ephesians: Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might… Take unto you the whole armor of God…Stand therefore, having your loins girded about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith you shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Ephesians 6:10- 17. The weapons of our warfare are not of our human nature; they are of God. We conquer by possessing the Lord Himself. We must take on His divine nature, and “we have been given exceeding great and precious promises, that by these we might be partakers of His divine nature” (II Peter 1:4).
Now we are going to look at the promise and provision that God gave to Moses and the children of Israel because it is also His promise and provision of us.
Deuteronomy 11:22-25 For if
you shall diligently keep all these commandments which I command you, to do
them, to love the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, and to cleave unto
23 Then will the Lord drive out all these nations from before you, and you shall possess greater nations and mightier than yourselves.
24 Every place where the soles of your feet shall tread shall be yours: from the wilderness and Lebanon, from the river, the river Euphrates, even unto the uttermost sea shall your coast be.
25 There shall no man be able to stand before you: for the Lord your God shall lay the fear of you and the dread of you upon all the land that you shall tread upon, as He has said unto you.
In the same way that Israel had to overcome the inhabitants of Canaan, we have to overcome the Canaanites of our flesh. What we need to understand is how to accomplish this. How do we overcome our flesh nature and how do we possess the divine nature of the Lord? We cannot overcome our fallen nature, even the Scriptures say so. Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Then may you also do good, that are accustomed to do evil. Jeremiah 13:23. Overcoming our nature and possessing the Lord’s nature is humanly impossible. Zechariah bears this out when he says, This is the Word of the Lord, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts. Zechariah 4:6.
The Lord gave the key to overcoming and possessing to Moses and he gives it to us: Keep all these commandments which I command you, to do them, to love the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, and to cleave unto Him. The key to overcoming and possessing is in your relationship with the Lord. Learn to love Him with all your heart; learn to cleave unto Him. You do not win battles by fighting your enemy; you win them by learning to love the Lord with all your heart. The same is true for possessing. You overcome and possess through your relationship with the Lord. In yourself you cannot defeat your enemies or possess His nature, but you can learn how to love the Lord. When you love Him and cleave to Him, He will drive out your enemies and make you His dwelling place. Jesus said, If a man love Me, he will keep My Word: and My Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. John 14:23.
Copyright © 2006 by Henry DuBose