Before I start, let me wish Chag Sameach (Happy Holiday) to all those celebrating the very happy holiday of Purim today.
Remember what the Rabbis have said…we should celebrate so much that we get so drunk we can’t tell Mordechai from Haman!
And for all my Irish friends out there, Happy St. Paddy’s Day.
AND…to all my United States Marine Corps Combat Engineer Battalion brothers and sisters, enjoy celebrating this day for St. Paddy is the patron saint of the Combat Engineers!
Okay, enough of that, let’s get down to today’s message.
The other day I posted about faith being able to help us conquer fear, and throughout the Bible we are encouraged to be victorious because God is with us.
If you prefer to watch a video, click on this link: Watch the video.
Here are some references to verses that encourage us to be strong and victorious:
1 Corinthians15:57; Deuteronomy 20:4; Romans 8:31; Isaiah 55:11; 2 Tim 1:7
And we can be encouraged to be certain of victory not just by these passages, but by everything in the Bible, from Noah’s victory over evil, to Abraham’s victory over the 5 kings that abducted Lot, to Moses’ victory over Pharaoh and the entire Egyptian army, to Samson over the Phillistines, to…well, you get the picture.
I could go on for a LONG time talking about how we can have a spirit of victory when we are obedient to God.
But these victories were against other people. Isn’t there something more essential and more important than a victory over someone else?
Doesn’t Yeshua warn us not to be concerned about those who can harm the body, but rather against him who can destroy our soul? (Matthew 10:28)
So, what is the one thing we should try to have victory over more than anything else?
The real victory isn’t over men or women or corporations or even over the Enemy (for the record, he has already lost), but over our own nature, our own iniquity (desire to sin), and of our own fear.
Victory over anything must start with victory over ourselves.
As I discussed the other day (“Fear of Loss Ruins Joy of Having“), faith is what gives us the strength we need to overcome our weaknesses. The real victory we can achieve through God is to stop sinning.
Now, that is so much easier to say than to do, and we will never stop sinning, completely. To strive to be a perfect person is an unreasonable expectation, and can only result in one thing…apostasy.
That’s right. When we try to be something we cannot, eventually we become so frustrated and depressed that we decide the entire activity is useless. It is a bit of a paradox: the closer we try to come to perfection, the further away from it we go.
I have constantly said (maybe some of you will recognize this) that we can never be sinless, but we can always sin less.
That is my goal, which is still pretty difficult to attain, but it is attainable.
I still sin, mostly not because I want to but because I am human and weak. And thanks be to God that he sent Yeshua, my Messiah, to make forgiveness of my sins possible through the sacrificial death Yeshua suffered on my behalf.
None of us will ever be sinless, but with faith and prayer and listening to the Ruach HaKodesh (the Holy Spirit), we can find victory over ourselves.
I have known many people over the years who have made a complete “180”, a spiritual U-Turn, and become loving, compassionate, and faithful followers of God’s instructions to us about how to worship him and how to treat each other (you can find these only in the Torah).
I can truly hold myself up as one of these people. Not that I am compassionate enough, or loving enough, or even patient enough to be satisfied with my spiritual maturity, but if you knew me before! Oy!
It’s like when I was a kid and people would comment about my sense of humor: I would introduce them to my father (God rest his soul) and then they would say, “Oh, well, you’re not so bad, after all.”
We have the opportunity to develop a spirit of victory, and it can be over the tsouris we have to suffer living in a cursed and fallen world, but the real victory isn’t over our environment, it is over ourselves.
Therefore, work on yourself, read the Bible every day to be encouraged, to know better how others have been victorious with God’s help, and seek him out for your own victory.
Thank you for being here and please share these messages with everyone you know. Subscribe to my website and my YouTube channel, and on Facebook join my group called “Just God’s Word”.
And remember that I always welcome your comments.
That’s it for today, so l’hitraot and Baruch HaShem!