SALVATION: EIGHTCopyright Š 2013 Trumpet Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved
("Salvation: Eight" is taken from Three Deaths and Three Resurrections: Volume One, copyright Š 2011 Trumpet Ministries, found in the Kindle Library)
We have stated before that there is both a negative and a positive aspect of redemption, and that the final result of redemption is our complete union with the Lord Jesus Christ. The negative aspect of redemption is the destruction of all the authority, all the power, and all the effects of the "accuser of our brothers." The positive aspect of redemption is the creation in us of the nine-dimensional fruit of the Holy Spirit, which is the Character and disposition of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Notice the three means by which the saints of Christ will accomplish the negative aspect of redemption: the blood of the Lamb, the word of their testimony, and the loving not of their lives to the death.
"The blood of the Lamb" refers to the first death and resurrection, as described in this book, which we have termed salvation.
"The word of their testimony" refers to the second death and resurrection, which we have termed sanctification.
"They loved not their lives to the death" refers to the third death and resurrection, which we have named conquest.
It is impossible to accomplish the negative aspect of redemption, which is the destruction of the personality and works of the devil, until each of these three means has been employed. Who of the Church of Christ of today will volunteer to be one of God's victorious saints, being willing and ready to lay hold on the grace of God that accompanies each of these means of redemption? Will you?
Sin has a terrible grip on the world of today, as we know. It is true also that there is much sin being practiced by the members of the Christian Church, the Body of Christ. Why is this, when our baptism in water signifies that we have escaped the authority of Satan and now are free to serve righteousness?
Why doesn't every believer, upon receiving the Lord Jesus, enter a life of righteousness, peace, joy in the Holy Spirit? Why do the nations of the earth, now that the Prince of Peace has been born in Bethlehem, continue to destroy themselves with drunkenness, adultery, violence, covetousness, jealousy, gambling, worry, spiritism, and every other destructive practice?
The answer is that there are powerful, cunning rulers having wicked natures who are ruling the spiritual environment of the world. The Holy Spirit leads the saint into warfare against these rulers of the spiritual darkness of the present age.
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high [heavenly] places. (Ephesians 6:12)
Every saint is in a wrestling match. A wrestling match is brought to a conclusion only when one or the other of the wrestlers conquers his opponent. This is true of the wrestling match described in the sixth chapter of Ephesians, as quoted above. The saints finally will overcome the adversary; and when they do, the events of Revelation, Chapter 12 will occur.
Why is it that we cannot seem to finish the struggle today? Why do we keep on wrestling and not conquer the accuser? The answer to this is that we are not yet strong enough in Christ. We have not advanced to maturity in the plan of redemption, in righteousness, holiness, and obedience to the Father.
Before the saints are enabled to overcome the accuser the Body of Christ must grow further toward "the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ" (Ephesians 4:13). The ministries and gifts of the Spirit must become much more anointed in power and much more widespread among the members of the Body.
The level of righteousness, holiness, and obedience of the Church must be raised to the point at which Michael and his angels can be commissioned to cast down the "ancient serpent" from his present location in the heavens (Revelation 12:9).
The Christian Church has been assigned the authority and power to bind and to loose the spiritual forces. Whatever the Church looses on the earth is loosed in the spirit realm. The problems that we observe in the material world have their source in the spiritual world, and it is impossible to solve the material problems until the spiritual powers have been brought under control. It is impossible to "spoil the strong man's house" until the strong man has been rendered powerless.
If such is the case, and the loosing of the heavens and the resulting loosing of the earth are waiting for the maturing of Christ in the saints, how then can this maturing be brought about? If the creation is anticipating joyfully the Day when the sons of God usher in the Year of Jubilee (the Kingdom Age), how can the sons of God come to maturity and fullness of authority and strength?
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (Ephesians 4:11-13)
One of the principal purposes (if not the principal purpose) of the Church age is the strengthening of the believers until they individually and collectively attain the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. The members of the Body of Christ are built up by that which "every joint supplieth" (Ephesians 4:16). This means the desired maturity will be brought about as each member of the Body exercises his or her unique ministry.
Overcoming strength is developed in the Body of Christ as the Holy Spirit creates in each saint the fullness of the image of Christ. Persecution, harassment, and other causes of suffering contribute to the development of overcoming strength in us.
Every member of the Body of Christ has been issued a ministry through the Holy Spirit. Some members possess many outstanding gifts while others are not as richly endowed. However, the number or visibility of the gifts is not the issue. The issue is the faithfulness of the believer in exercising his or her gifts. A Christian with one talent who makes good use of it is infinitely more valuable in building the Body than the believer who has ten gifts and brings none of them to full operation.
The final result of the exercise of the ministries and gifts of the members of the Body of Christ is the maturing and unifying of the Body. As soon as Christ comes to maturity in the Body, the opponent will be overthrown. It is this conquest that Revelation, Chapter 12 is portraying in prophetic symbolism.
And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: (Revelation 12:1)
The Christian Church, the Body of Christ, is a "great wonder in heaven." The Church is not of the world, it is of Heaven. Although the Church is constructed from the lowly folk of our planet, the character of the Church has nothing to do with the world. Its members are born from above (John 1:13).
The Church is clothed with the "sun," that is, with the Lord Jesus Christ. The Christian Church is not naked in the spirit realm, neither is it clothed in the efforts of the flesh but with the Lord Jesus' own righteousness and glory.
The "moon" is under the feet of the Church. The moon represents all the created works of God, for God's works have no glory of their own but reflect the glory of their Creator. All the works of God's hands are under the power of the Church when the Church is abiding in Christ and Christ in the Church.
On the head of the woman is a crown of twelve stars. It is our understanding that the number twelve symbolizes the fullness of the family of God, and the stars are the outstanding saints who have turned many to righteousness.
There is no division between the true Israel and the Christian Church, they are one and the same. The Church of Christ is one Church, and it began with Abraham (one of God's stars) at the point when God called him from Ur of the Chaldees. The Church is the true and only Seed of Abraham, the fullness of Christ who is to be the Center of all the works of God.
All the saints of God, Moses, Elijah, Enoch, David, Daniel, Joel, Paul, John, on through Church history, are of Christ. The Gospel was preached to Abraham (Galatians 3:8). There is only one family of God (Ephesians 3:15). There is one Lord, one Spirit, one baptism, one salvation, one Seed of Abraham, one Church, one Body of Christ, one Wife of the Lamb, one Servant of the Lord.
We Gentiles have been grafted on the one true Vine. The oneness of all saints was portrayed on the Mount of Transfiguration where Moses and Elijah stood with Peter, James, and John beside Christ. The stars on the head of the woman in Revelation, Chapter 12 symbolize God's heroes of faith of every age.
And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered. (Revelation 12:2)
The Church is "with child" today, and in travail through the Holy Spirit because Christ is being formed in the Church. There will come a "delivery"; and when it comes, the accuser will be cast out of his stronghold in the heavenlies. The maturing of Christ in the Church in the last days of the present age will bring about the destruction of the kingdom of darkness whether that kingdom is found in the heavenlies or on the earth.
The cross of Calvary marked the beginning of the destruction of the kingdom of darkness. The cross of Christ always is the means by which redemption maintains its legal authority. All works of redemption proceed from the crucifixion and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. (Revelation 12:3)
Not only is the Church of Christ a wonder in the heaven but the accuser also is a wonder in the heaven. There are two wonders in the heaven.
The Church and the devil are not wonders in the world, they are wonders in the heaven. The spiritual wrestling match has little to do with flesh and blood. The contest is between Christ in the Church and Satan; between the Seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent (Genesis 3:15).
The dragon is red with the blood of murder. He has seven heads, indicating perfect wisdom. He has ten horns, denoting power to overcome the peoples of the world. He has seven crowns, symbolizing the authority given to him by God for his season of rulership.
No human being is equal to the accuser in wisdom and power. This is why the labors of the flesh are futilea waste of timewhen they are not being directed by the Holy Spirit. The accuser has supernatural wisdom, power, and authority. Christ, and only Christ, possesses superior wisdom, power, and authority. The woman is clothed with Christ, not with the weakness, uselessness, and corruption of fleshly righteousness, wisdom, and strength.
And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. (Revelation 12:4)
The Scriptures do not provide us with much information concerning the ancient rebellion in the heavens. There are a few scattered references, of which Revelation 12:4 is an example. We understand from these few references that there was a dreadful uprising against the will and rulership of the Father. The rebellion occurred prior to the creation of the heavens and the earth.
Sin began in Heaven and was introduced into the Garden of Eden by the accuser. The Divine plan of salvation and redemption cannot be understood apart from its role of judging the persons and the effects of that wicked rebellion.
The number of the creatures of the heavens appears to be exceedingly greatperhaps many times more than the number of people who have been born on the earth. The heavenly rebels may include an enormously large group of spirits. The disobedient angels will be cast down to the earth by Michael and his angels. This alerts us to the fact that wickedness will attain astounding proportions in the days to come. We must put on the whole armor of God if we expect to stand in the Lord throughout the evil period that even now is coming on the earth.
. . . and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. (Revelation 12:4)
Here is the confrontation between the two wonders in the heaven. The Church is ready to bring forth the "measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ." The dragon desires to prevent the maturing of Christ in the Church just as he attempted to destroy the Lord Jesus Christ while He still was a baby, and later at the hand of Pontius Pilate.
And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. (Revelation 12:5)
The "man child" is Christ in us, the fruit of the travail of the Church. The purpose of the "man child" (male Son), who is the Body of the Servant of the Lord, is to bring "judgment (justice) to the Gentiles" (Isaiah, Chapters 42 and 43).
Christ, Head and Body, is this "Servant of the Lord." At the appearing of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Head will be joined to the Body. Then the fullness of the ministry of the Church will commence (John 17:21; Romans 8:17).
Joseph in Egypt is a type of the members of the Body of Christ, who are sorely tested and afflicted throughout their lives on earth. When the Lord Jesus appears, the members of His Body will come into the fullness of fruitfulness and rulership just as Joseph came into the fullness of fruitfulness after he had been tested by the Word of the Lord. Like Joseph in prison, we are to minister today diligently and faithfully according to the ability and faith that God gives.
The fruit of our labors is the building of the Body of Christ, as Paul pointed out in Ephesians, Chapter Four. When the time for the fullness of fruitfulness and rulership arrives, the Servant of the Lord will bring salvation to the nation of Israel (Romans 11:26); will strengthen unto righteousness and victory in Christ every heir of the new covenant (Isaiah 42:3); and will bring justice, mercy, and deliverance to the nations of the earth (Isaiah 42:1,6).
The peoples of the earth are destroying themselves for lack of judgment and justice. The leaders of the nations are well intentioned, in some instances, but they possess neither the wisdom nor the power to bring peace and material prosperity to earth's inhabitants. The problems of the earth are caused by the evil lords of the heavenlies, the rulers of the spiritual darkness of the present age. The most diligent efforts of conscientious men and women are frustrated continually by the opposition of Satan and his hordes of demons.
Yet, God loves the inhabitants of the earth with His boundless love, and so He is preparing for them the Deliverer, ChristHead and Body, who will minister throughout the earth. Christ will destroy all the works of the devil. He will bring the knowledge and Presence of God to all the men, women, boys, and girls of the nations that are spared in the Day of the Lord (Matthew 25:34).
The nations of this earth will be shepherded with the "rod of iron," which is the symbol of the Millennium. The Millennium is the thousand-year Kingdom Age during which the laws of the Kingdom of God will be enforced by the authority and power of the King of kings and Lord of lords, Christ.
Iron, as spoken of symbolically in the Scriptures, typifies the strength of irresistible government. "The fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron, forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise" (Daniel 2:40).
A rod of iron is the controlling rule of God that crushes all resistance. When Christ rules during the Kingdom Age there will be no successful resistance to His rule, even though the peoples of the earth are not of a perfect nature at that time.
There will be no nation that is exempt from the government of Christ. He will shepherd all the nations of the earth with His rod of iron (Psalms 2:8,9).
. . . and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. (Revelation 12:5)
Every bit of Christ that has been formed in our heart has been caught up already to God and His throne. Our life already is hidden with Christ in God. Our resurrection and bodily ascension to meet Christ in the air, which will take place when Christ appears, will be an outward expression of the spiritual transformation and resurrection taking place in us now.
Each member of the Body of Christ is in a struggle. We are endeavoring, by the grace the Spirit imparts to us daily, to conquer the world, Satan, and our adamic nature. Sin presses us down to the bondages of our flesh, but Christ who is being formed in us is pressing us upward to the Throne of God. The battle rages as we go through the necessary experiences with the Lord.
How is it faring with you? What force is being victorious in you? Is the world conquering you or are you conquering the world?
Christ who is being formed in you is at home only on the highest throne of the universethe Throne of God Almighty. If Christ is being formed in you He is reaching up toward His natural realm of authority and liberty. Your old nature is being used by Satan as a weight to keep you pulled down into the disobedience and lust of life lived in the wisdom and energies of the flesh.
If you will remain obedient to the Holy Spirit, resting in His wisdom, authority, and power, He will bring forth Christ in you. The power of the living Christ will surge upward toward God and His throne.
Finding our abiding place and rest at the right hand of God does not happen overnight, as to its practical working out in our life; although legally and positionally we rise with Christ when we emerge from our baptism in water. Becoming established in the resurrection life of Christ is a process that demands our attention and strength twenty-four hours of every day of our Christian pilgrimage (Philippians 3:10,11).
Christ is being formed in the Church. As soon as He is formed He proceeds upward to the throne of His Father. When this act of creation reaches the required level in the Church, which is the establishing of the Kingdom of God in Heaven at the right hand of God, it will be time for the Kingdom to be brought into the earth. Michael, the chief angel, will be enabled by the Father to conduct his forces in the successful engagement of the enemy. The latter will be hurled into the earth and then destroyed out of the earth.
The tremendous power of Christ is in every true Christian. If the disciple will follow on to know the Lord, Christ, who is in him or her, will be caught up to God and to His throne. Christ always sits on the Throne of God, having all authority and power in the heavens and on the earth.
We of ourselves can do nothing at all. Christ who is being formed in us is the Heir of all things.
And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. (Revelation 12:6)
The "woman" is the Church of Christ, the Body of Christ. Christ is being formed in the Church. As soon as the task of bringing forth Christ has been completed, the Church will flee into a place prepared of God in the wilderness. The Lord Jesus will nourish and protect His Church throughout the three and one-half years of very great trouble and darkness. (It is possible that the number three and one-half is symbolic rather than literal.)
God always shall provide for His Church. The promises of Scripture will hold true just as solidly throughout the great tribulation as they do today.
There is no need for the Church of Christ to be fearful concerning the spiritual and natural calamities that will take place during the closing hours of the present age. The Church always will be maintained in a place "prepared of God," and always will be nourished by the Divine riches of God's Glory that are contained in Christ.
The concern of the Church is the bringing forth of the unified, mature Body of Christ. As soon as that has occurred the Church will be well provided for throughout all the events yet to come.
The war in the heavens results from the fact that there are two antagonistic camps: the holy angels who chose to serve God and to do His will, and the unholy angels who chose to follow the adversary. These two sets of opposing heavenly beings are engaged in a warfare that is dimly understood by humans.
. . . Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, (Revelation 12:7)
The fight between the two camps of angels is power against power. All power comes from the Lord God Almighty. Therefore the outcome of the struggle depends on the Lord God. The hand of the Lord God is moved in terms of His own decisions concerning right and wrong, righteousness and sin, holiness and uncleanness, obedience and disobedience, and according to His own ultimate purposes.
God always has retained the power to render the dragon and his followers incapable of action. Why, then, has He not empowered Michael long ago to cast these evil angels out of the heaven?
The answer is that the woman (Eve) was deceived by the dragon, and it is through the Seed of the woman (ChristHead and Body) that God will destroy the authority, the power, and the effects of the rebels of the heaven (Revelation 12:8).
This is the first time that Michael and his troops have been able to cast out of the heaven the dragon and his angels. Why is it possible at this time? It is possible because the "man child" (male Son) has been born and caught up to God and to His throne.
In order for the male Son to be born in the Church and caught up to God the saints have had to overcome the adversary. By the blood of the Lamb, by their unrelenting adherence to the Word of God, and by loving not their lives to the death, the saints have broken through the walls of sin and have come into the Light of God. The result is, God gives Michael and his angels the power to remove Satan from his position in the heavens.
All of the creation, both the heavens and the earth, is awaiting the revealing of the sons of God. The Son of God, Christ, was revealed two thousand years ago. Now we are drawing near to the manifestation of the sons of God, who will be revealed so that they may destroy the works of the devil. Michael cannot defeat the fallen lords of darkness until the firstfruits of the saints, the holy remnant, have been made perfect in obedience.
God will avenge Himself of all disobedience as soon as our obedience has been fulfilled (II Corinthians 10:6).
Every creature in the universe looks forward to the maturing of the Church of Christ because God has assigned to the Church the authority of judgment. Whatever the Church binds on the earth is bound in the heaven and whatever the Church looses on the earth is loosed in the heaven. The Church holds the keys of the Kingdom of God, the key of David.
Christ in the saints will come to the level of maturity and judgment required for the victory of Michael. The army in the heaven and the army on the earth (Mahanaim the company of two armies) work together in the war against the ancient dragon.
The army in the heaven possesses the spiritual power. The army of saints possesses the legal authority through Christ. The captain of the Lord's host (Michaelthe captain of the warring angels) must meet with the ministry of Joshua in the Church, so to speak, before the invasion of the land of promise can be launched successfully.
Thanks be to our God forever! Satan's place never again will be found in the heaven. What a victory! Sin was born in the heaven and now, finally, it has been overcome and cast out. What a struggle! What a wrestling! Victory is certain through Christ.
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: . . . . (Revelation 12:9)
It was the serpent who deceived Eve and Adam. He is the ancient serpent, dating back to a period before the creation of the heavens and the earth. He is the adversary, the accuser. He deceives and destroys the nations of the earth. He is the father of lies.
. . . he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. (Revelation 12:9)
The evil lords of darkness, of Ephesians 6:12, are cast out of the heaven and into the earth. What a time of rejoicing for those who dwell in the heavens! What a time of darkness for the earth!
Can you imagine the state of the earth when a multitude of enraged, frustrated, wicked angels are deposed from their heavenly vantage points and forced to live among mankind? The earth is close to Hell now; but in the future the earth will become the very suburb of Hell, for the lords of darkness will be dwelling here among people.
This is the righteousness of God. The evil spirits and the people whom they have deceived are in agreement concerning the conduct of life on the earth. Why, then, should they not dwell together?
Those who love and serve the Lord Jesus Christ will shine as the sun in that day.
And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: . . . . (Revelation 12:10)
Jesus declared: "If I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you" (Luke 11:20). The Kingdom of God is associated with the casting out of evil spirits, which is the negative aspect of the Christian redemption.
The casting of the dragon and his angels out of the heavens is the coming of salvation. It is the coming of power. It is the coming of the Kingdom of our God. It is the coming of the authority of His Christ.
The "loud voice" may be that of Gabriel who is one of the chief messengers of God. It is not a weak voice, it is a strong voice. The proclamation thunders throughout the boundaries of the heaven: "The salvation, the power, and the Kingdom of our God have come. The authority of God's Christ has come."
. . . for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. (Revelation 12:10)
The expression "our brothers" reveals that the elect on earth and the elect in Heaven are one family. Paul charged Timothy before God, Christ, and the elect angels (I Timothy 5:21). The holy angels who chose to obey God have an interest in the outcome of the Christian travail. The army in Heaven and the army in the earth have much in common: each is composed of servants of the Lord God of Heaven.
Notice the phrase, "the accuser of our brothers." One of the principal works of the dragon is holding before God the imperfections of His saints. The adversary is intent on bringing down to destruction every person that he can. The Lord's hands are weakened when His saints sin because the accuser then can emphasize to the Lord that God's chosen people are doing exactly as Satan does, therefore God is unjust to blame Satan when His own elect are practicing pride and disobedience (II Samuel 12:14).
God's hands are strengthened when He can demonstrate that His children will obey Him even when it becomes very unpleasant for them to maintain their trust in God. Then the accuser can find nothing to say (Job 2:3).
The accusations go on day and night concerning the elect. If Satan can discover a fault in one of the elect he magnifies it constantly to make sure that God is taking it into account. It is easy and convenient for one Christian to criticize another Christian because Satan already has provided the atmosphere for such criticism. We join in with Satan when we criticize our brothers and sisters.
When the Body of Christ has come to full stature the saints will possess the wisdom and strength required to overcome the evil age in which we are attempting to live righteously. As soon as Christ has been formed in the saints and has been caught up to God and to His throne, the accuser will be cast out of the heaven into the earth and his angels with him.
All God's creatures will profit from this victory. The atmosphere of the whole heavens will be purified by the removal of the nagging voice that constantly has repeated before the Father the shortcomings, the failings, the sins and disobedience of His saints. The nations will suffer at first but later will be brought into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
In these three means of overcoming the dragon we find the three deaths and three resurrections that are the topic of this book. Since we are, in the present section, emphasizing the first death and resurrection, we will discuss the overcoming of the dragon by the blood of the Lamb.
There is ultimate authority and power in the blood of Christ. It is the one factor that makes it possible for God to accept us in our imperfections. When we come to Christ as an unsaved person the blood is spread over us as a protection against the wrath of Godwrath directed primarily against the evil spirits. The blood gives us firm standing before God Almighty, boldness before the Throne of God, before we are capable of one righteous act.
Then, as we abide in Christ, the righteous and holy fruit of the Spirit begins to grow in us. It is a slow but tangible process. Our nature begins to change into the righteous nature of Christ. In the meantime we sin often. If we are walking in the light of God's will, the blood covers our many sins and God continues to accept us.
When the Holy Spirit calls a sin to our attention we are to confess that sin and allow the blood of Christ to forgive our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. The accuser keeps on pointing out to God our sins and failings but the blood of the Lamb keeps on covering our iniquities. As long as we are obedient to the Holy Spirit, the blood of Christ keeps us in right standing before God. This is how we overcome by means of the blood of the Lamb.
The Lord Jesus Christ gives us to eat and drink, in the spirit realm, of His body and bloodHis Divine Substance. The Wife of the Lamb is created on the body and blood of the Lamb of God. We must by faith keep on eating His flesh and drinking His blood. If we do not we have no life in us. Christ is the Tree of Life. As we partake of Him we keep on nourishing the Divine life in us.
There is evil in the earth today. One can notice the poisonous atmosphere of perversity that fills the environment, not only of the world but to a certain extent of the Christian churches as well. There is a depth of sin and rebellion that results in deeds that obviously are proceeding not from human nature but from the nature of Satan.
When we come in contact with this poison we are affected. If we are not abiding in the body and blood of the Lamb we may begin to fight back, attempting to meet this perversity with some evil of our own. We may endeavor to fight the devil's fire with a little fire of our own making. Whenever we do this we are reproved by the Holy Spirit.
The only possible manner in which evil can be overcome is by good. Not by the good of the flesh, however. We may have the best of intentions concerning overcoming evil with our own good, but the evil that surrounds us today is so poisonous that our good soon is overcome.
We are not able, in our own strength, to combat this sin and rebellion, this foulness, this perversity, this uncleanness, this satanic influence. There is only one remedy. It is the body and blood of the Lamb. Though the circumstances about us are conspiring to pull us down into the realm of hating and fretting, the body and blood of Christ are powerful enough to overcome all evil and to enable us to walk on our high places in God.
We can forgive all people and all circumstances through the heavenly virtue contained in the body and blood of Christ. By His body and blood we can overcome all evil no matter how poisonous. Try it and see for yourself!
It is not the Lord's will that you be bowed down with the evil of your surroundings. You cannot fight successfully against all the problems that are coming your way. Turn the battle over to the Lord. Ask Him for the renewing virtue of the body and blood of Christ to help you overcome the evil that is around you. You will receive a victory you never realized was possible, even though the circumstances may not change. The change may occur in you.
As we proceed along in our discipleship we come to realize that our daily conquering of the accuser depends on the blood of the Lamb in four ways:
The blood is our Passover protection from the overflowing wrath of God Almighty that is directed continually against the gods of the world.
The blood of the Lamb is our compensating, continuing righteousness as we proceed to bring forth the fruit of the Spiritthe moral image of Christ created in us.
There is authority in the blood to enable us to cleanse ourselves from unrighteous behavior.
The blood is our necessary drink that nourishes the Divine Substance of the Lamb in us.
These four elements of the grace of God are vital to our successful pursuit of overcoming strength.
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12)
We Christians are not wrestling against flesh and blood. Our kingdom is not of the world or else we would fight with physical arms and violence. Our fight is against the armies of evil in the spirit realms. We are wrestling in the Spirit against rebellious lords, against authorities, against the rulers of the darkness of the present evil age, against spiritual powers poised on the heavenly vantage points.
The fight will not continue forever. The hour will arrive when we will conquer the enemy by the grace of God. That period is portrayed symbolically in Revelation, Chapter 12, and is the first of the three means by which we succeed in overcoming the accuser is the blood of the Lamb of God, Christ.
It is not a hopeless, eternal struggle. The conclusion is at hand. The Victor is the Lord Jesus Christ who first conquered on the cross of Calvary, who now is conquering, and who will conquer yet further through His Body, which is the Church.
The creation awaits the victory in the spirit realm. Heaven is intently observing the victorious saints on the wrestling mat. Salvation, power, the Kingdom of our God, and the authority of His Christ will come as the result of the triumph of the blood of Christ working on behalf of and within the saints.
How inspiring it is to realize that there will come an end to the struggle and that the saints finally will conquer! As soon as the "man child" (male Son) has been brought forth to God's standard of fullness and perfection, Michael and his angels will sweep the foe from the heavens. What an occasion of highest jubilation for the inhabitants of the heavens! What a time of hideous darkness for the inhabitants of the earth!
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. (Revelation 12:12)
Let us who are of the Church of Christ be faithful to Him who has called us to be soldiers in His army. Let us walk in the light of the Holy Spirit, thereby laying hold on the all-powerful grace that is in the blood of the Lamb. It is by His blood that we will be successful in our struggle to overcome the ancient serpent, the lusts of our fleshly nature, and the poisonous atmosphere of the present wicked age in which we are attempting to please Christ.