Leviticus 19:17-18 “Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him. Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD.”
The enemy’s hand has never been more prevalent than today.
Distraction, division, and destruction are on the rise. We would expect it from those who do not know our God but in the church? Many are accepting of things reviled in days past.
To point out the things wrong would put us on edge. Yet, the remedy has been with us all along.
Romans 12:21 “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”
Are we in a state of being overcome with the evil of our day?
Whether in the political arena, social justice, healthcare issues, or within our own families, Satan has been fighting to make inroads that distract, divide, and destroy us on all levels.
The world only knows one way to fight. We, as children of God, have the connection to unlimited power. We have been given the promise that we will overcome no matter what the circumstance.
John 16:33 “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
1 John 4:4 “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”
1 John 5:4-5 “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?”
So, why are there more of the church overcome with evil and not living as overcomers?
According to our passage this morning, it is because we lack the love needed to overcome. We can easily say we love God. But is it a real statement with us?
1 John 3:17 “But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?”
1 John 4:20-21 “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.”
Many are sidetracked by the emotions that overtake us. Situations and circumstances happen to us all. God tells us it is familiar to us that we will have trials and tribulations in this life.
1 Corinthians 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
Do we miss such a simple statement – “but God is faithful…?”
Often, we try so hard in the flesh and leave off the spiritual power available to us. We think God too busy or not interested in our “little” problems. These and so many others are lies of the enemy to keep us from staying connected to our power source.
With God, we often see that the way up is down, and the way to exultation is through humility. The way to victory is for us to call on the One whose promise has already given us the victory if we but trust Him.
Take God at His Word. Fight the hatred, anger, sorrow, depression, loneliness, apathy, offense, hurt, and anxiety with something outside of ourselves. God’s love can conquer all. We must have faith to believe that.
It is not within us to love like God can. He must be allowed to love through us.
When we feel like retaliating, love.
When we are hurt or offended, love.
When we are drowning in sorrow, love.
When all the world seems against us, love.
Easy to complete? No. The commands of God often cannot be followed with only the strength of our flesh. It must be in partnership with the Spirit of God in communion with Him.
God would not give us an impossible task and sit idly by as we fail miserably.
What God commands, He also enables.