“I heard an old, old story,
How a Savior came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary
To save a wretch like me;
I heard about His groaning,
Of His precious blood’s atoning,
Then I repented of my sins
And won the victory.
O victory in Jesus,
My Savior, forever.
He sought me and bought me
With His redeeming blood;
He loved me ere I knew Him
And all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory,
Beneath the cleansing flood.”
Everyone loves an underdog story…
Like the story of the skinny preacher from rural Pennsylvania, who went to New York City because God broke his heart for the seven gang members he read about in a magazine, who became founder of Teen Challenge and pastor of Times Square Church.
This hymn, Victory in Jesus, is an underdog story. It reminds us that we are all underdogs in that we are hopeless in our sin. We are all born with a sin nature; born into an impossible situation with all odds against us.
But it isn’t God’s will for us to live the defeated life as an underdog. He created us for victory, for destiny!
God had a plan from the beginning of time for the ultimate underdog story. He knew we couldn’t overcome our sin nature on our own, yet He created us for greatness, for victory!
We needed a Savior! A Savior that would win the victory for us.
“Victory in Jesus!”
This song I sang as a girl has great truth, but for some reason I lived so much of my life believing it was a story that celebrated the day of the salvation from my sin, and the promise for the day I would go to heaven when I die. But what about the life lived between these two days? I am learning that the victory I have in Jesus is meant for every day!
I am to live life from the Position of Victory!
The night David Wilkerson asked himself a question and talked to God about it…
“How much time do I spend in front of that screen each night?…What would happen, Lord, if I sold that TV set and spent that time – praying?…What would happen if I spent two hours every single night in prayer?
…changed the direction of his life.
There was a battle going on in his thoughts…
“I was tired at night. I needed relaxation and change of pace. Television was part of our culture; it wasn’t good for a minister to be out of touch with what people were seeing and talking about.”
…the victory he won in his thoughts defined him as a man of prayer who has left an incredible legacy for the Kingdom of God.
What is this position of Victory in Jesus?
“But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:57
Victory – an act of defeating an enemy or opponent in a battle, game, or other competition.
This Position of Victory sets you above all opponents…
*Those thoughts that battle within your mind when God prompts you to do something that doesn’t make sense.
*When you find yourself wanting to throw yourself a pity party.
*When fear comes knocking from a diagnosis.
*When everywhere you look there just isn’t enough.
This position of Victory enables you to…
*obey God even when it doesn’t make sense. Victory enables you to push through what your flesh wants and to do, to do the hard thing, and to do it afraid.
*pray for those who have caused your pity party. Victory enables you to lay aside your feelings, your rights, your expectations, and to pray for others to be blessed so that they also live in the victory God intends.
* trust God and fear Him alone, with full confidence that He loves you, that He is for you, and that He is your Great Physician who is able to care for you. Victory enables you to trust God for His diagnosis.
* lean on the promises of God and to call out what isn’t as though it were! Victory enables you to look past your lack and to keep your eyes and your hope on the Giver of all good gifts, and on the One who provides all your needs.
Victory in Jesus is a position based on what Jesus did, not on what you have done. This position of victory doesn’t depend on your strength or ability. There is no way to earn it, it is obtained through belief in Jesus alone.
Victory in Jesus says, “Not my will, but Your’s be done.”
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
A victorious life doesn’t hold on to sin by making excuses or by hiding it from others. The position of victory realizes sin weakens and disempowers, and so, humbly asks God to reveal all sin so confession and repentance will bring forgiveness, healing, and freedom.
Victory in Jesus is freedom!
“We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him.” Romans 6:6-8
A victorious life lives above the strategies of the enemy, wielding the authority and the protection the Lord has given and claiming the victory that He has already won.
Victory in Jesus protects!
“Look, I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy, and you can walk among snakes and scorpions and crush them. Nothing will injure you.” Luke 10:19
A victorious life is a life filled with the fullness of the Holy Spirit. It is evidenced with the fruit of the Spirit; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness, and self-control, and with good deeds that show God’s glory.
Victory in Jesus shines!
“let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” Matthew 5:16
A victorious life prays scary prayers that shake the house, that go beyond comfort zones, way beyond all borders! It is a life that makes the coward, brave; the weak, strong; and the poor, rich.
Victory in Jesus is enables and empowers!
” After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness.” Acts 4:29-31
The night the battle was going on within David Wilkerson’s thoughts, he set a fleece before the Lord which “changed his life.”
“Jesus, I need some help deciding this thing, so here’s what I’m asking of You. I’m going to put an ad for that set in the paper. If You’re behind this idea, let a buyer appear right away. Let him appear within an hour…within half an hour…after the paper gets on the streets.”
“…Twenty-nine minutes passed by the clock… The telephone rang…My life has not been the same since.”
It was during one of those late night prayer times that the Holy spirit prompted David to pick up the magazine which contained the pencil drawings and article of seven boys from New York City. Looking into their faces brought David to tears, his heart filled with sympathy and compassion. He felt the calling of God to go and to help those boys.
David Wilkerson went into New York City afraid. But every step along the way God was there with another promise of victory.
The victory in Jesus that encouraged and empowered David Wilkerson wasn’t for him alone. This victory overflowed into the lives of thousands and continues to impact lives today!
There is a life of Victory in Jesus for you as well!
The battle you are facing; whether it is scarcity in your finances, relationships, or health, or whether there is something God is calling you to do that you are resisting or excusing away, though the enemy means for it to defeat you, God intends for it to be the very thing for Him to encourage you, and to equip you, so you come through victorious!
May you be encouraged by the stories of Gideon and of David Wilkerson to get out of your comfort zone, rise up out of your place of hiding, listen to the call of God on your life, and even if you need to do it afraid trust that God will empower you and equip you to win the victory.
Because on the other side of your greatest fear is the “Victory in Jesus” that will be your greatest area of ministry!
Quotes from the book, “The Cross and the Switchblade”
Written by, David Wilkerson