“They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.” (Revelation 12:11)
Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33). The word overcome means to conquer and prevail. It means to defeat. It suggests a prevailing victory and triumph over the enemy. As Christians we are not exempt from the warfare. However, when the Bible says that “everyone born of God overcomes the world” (1 John 5:4) it means the church triumphant has one destination – victory. No matter what kind of opposition rises up against you, no matter what kind of trouble or hardship you fall into, and no matter what kind of affliction you find yourself having to deal with, you can be rock-solid sure of one thing: Because of Jesus, you will overcome!
The Blood: Any preacher of the gospel who skims over the blood of Jesus robs his listener of the only truth that has power to set a man free. A bloodless Christianity is no Christianity at all. The blood of Jesus is what delivered the final death blow to the power of sin, and the fear of death. When sin – like a hungry lion stalks about us, it is because of the blood that we don’t have to be afraid, and fold under the strength of its power. Faith in the shed blood of Jesus means that any sin of the past has now been paid for. It means that the power of any sin that has ever, or ever will be committed, is now permanently broken. It means that provision has already been made well in advance for any future sins. One of the ways that the enemy shows his contempt for the the Church of Christ is accusation. The Bible says that Satan accuses us to our Father day and night. Because of the blood we are set free from guilt and condemnation. We are set free from the regret of our past failures and defeats. When the enemy points to my failures and shortcomings I point him to my crown. When the enemy brings up my past I point him to his future. I heard a preacher say once that , “The power of sin will never stand up to the power of the blood. It will laugh at you but it trembles at the blood of Jesus. You start the day with the blood of Jesus and you end the day with the blood of Jesus.” “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb.”
The Word of Their Testimony: Isaiah 40:8 states, “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stand forever.” One of the greatest assurances for the Christian is that the Word of God is truth and truth will always have the final word. Christians do not engage in a natural, carnal kind of warfare but rather a spiritual one. The Bible says that the Word of God is the Sword of the Spirit. When we pick up our sword and wield it against the powers of darkness we are fighting the fight of faith. The Bible says that the Word is living and active. When we have faith in the Word of God we overcome the hollow, empty threats of the enemy.
Christianity is very much experiential. The gospels tell us about a time when Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do you say that I am?” Peter answered by saying, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” To this Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man but by my Father in heaven.” (Matthew 16:16-17). Jesus was acknowledging that this knowledge was supernatural. This kind of revelation could only be experienced. Peter experienced an opening of the eyes. Peter would go on to fail Jesus terribly but Jesus prayed that Peter would overcome. Peter’s eyes had been opened to see the Lord high and lifted up in power and glory, and that was his testimony that no demon in hell could ever steal.
Jesus says something in this exchange that will forever stand now and through eternity. He said, “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” (Matthew 16:18). Jesus knew that days of evil would come. He knew that what was about to be unleashed by the enemy would strike at the very heart of the righteous. But, on the rock of revelation of who Christ is, God would empower Peter to stand by faith. No weapon forged against him, no accusing voice, and no power or force in heaven or on earth, would ever shake him from that solid ground.
A Life that is not Our Own: With Jesus, it’s all or nothing. He said that, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters – yes, even his own life – he cannot be my disciple.” (Matthew 14:26). This attitude of total abandonment to the perfect will of God could one day cost more than the things of this world such as friendship, popularity, pride, comfort, or wealth. It could cost your life. When God pours out His supernatural grace you will be able to say like Jesus, “Not my will but yours be done”, and like Jesus you will walk resolutely into a painful crucifixion with an unshakeable faith that yes, with God, there will also be a resurrection!
My prayer for you is that you will stand firm and unmoved in your faith. I pray that your spirit would soar above the things of this world that hold nothing for you. I pray that you will be able to say, like Paul in 1 Timothy, “I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day. ” (2 Timothy 1:12). I pray that you will overcome by the blood of the lamb, the word of his testimony, and that your life would be offered to Him as a living sacrifice.