(4) For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (5) Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?1 John 5:1-5
We find this reality about winning the battle in 1 John 5:4-5. How do we “overcome the world”? First, we must understand what constitutes this “world” that John is referring to in verses 4-5. John already defined what he means by the word “world” in chapter 2.
(15) Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (17) And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.1 John 2:15-17
Satan knows how to tempt us. He tempts us with things in the world system that already appeal to our flesh. This constitutes the believers three enemies- The world system, the flesh, and satanic forces. How do we overcome the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life? Ultimately we will not do it apart from saving faith in Jesus Christ that leads to a practical faith in Christ as well. When we trust in Christ we are made into new creatures. We receive the indwelling Spirit. He saves us. He changes us. He begins to help us to depend on Him, know His Word, and overcome the lust of the flesh, eyes, and pride of life.
Our victory is not in ourselves. It’s not in the latest fad. It’s not in some self-help book. It’s not in sheer will power. You can’t white knuckle your way to victory. It is only through trusting in Jesus Christ for salvation and sanctification that we can overcome and be victorious. It isn’t our victory unless we let Him be victorious in us and through us. To put it another way let’s look at one last verse:
(4) Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.(5) I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.John 15:4-5
You are in Christ. Act like it.
Lord God, please help me to depend on you today for every battle and every victory that I need. Amen.