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Victory is attainable through following Christ

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POSTED: September 25, 2012 6:00 p.m.

Christ was provided by God to die for the sins of mankind (John 3:16). Man must see that it is in Christ that victory is to be found.

It is recorded in the writings of Solomon: “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man” (Ecclesiastes 12:13). The one who seeks to please God will heed these words of the “wise man.” God has provided “… all things that pertain to life and godliness…” (2 Peter 1:3). Jesus himself said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the father, but by me” (John 14:6).

Paul said, “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:6-8). Paul knew his reward awaited him, and he longed for it. His life serves as an example of how a child of God should live: ever seeking to please God.

As we look at the word of God, we find that it is through baptism that one “gets into Christ.” Notice the words written by Paul: “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:27). To those at Rome, he wrote, “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized in his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:3-4). When one is baptized into Christ, he is a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17), he has forgiveness of sin (Colossians 1:14) and in Christ salvation and eternal life (2 Timothy 2:10, 1 John 5:11).

The prophet Isaiah — in many places, but especially in chapter 53 — gave us a look at Christ to help us see God’s plan for man’s victory and his great love for man. If one only would study the life of Christ, it easily would be seen that his life was not an easy one, but he gained victory. He suffered many things that if most suffered, they would have deserted their mission. He pressed forward. He was tempted as all men are tempted, yet he did not sin (Hebrews 4:15). In the gospel account given by Matthew, we read where Satan tempted Christ with things of this life, yet Christ refused to sin. In each temptation, the Lord quoted Scripture to overcome Satan’s advances. While Christ was going about his work, he continually was challenged by the scribes and Pharisees, yet remained steadfast to the will of the father.

The courage of Christ was seen when those men whom he had chosen to walk with him forsook him. He knew that death awaited at the cross, yet continued his march to Jerusalem. When he was taken prisoner in the garden, one of his disciples tried to defend him with a sword, but the Lord told him to put it away. Jesus said, “Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword … In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me. But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled” (Matthew 26:52-56). At his trial, there was no one to plead Christ’s case. Christ was mocked and beaten, but all the while, he stood with “a face like flint,” according to a passage from Isaiah.

He stood steadfast in following the father’s word. Surely, it can be seen that man today must also steadfastly follow God’s word.

 

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