Overcome, He has; overcome, we will

“Who is it that overcomes the world?  Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God” (1 John 5:5).  That’s us, folks.  He has overcome; “it is finished” (John 19:30). In Him, we believe and so, in Him, we have the promises, “to him who overcomes,” given to the seven churches in Revelation.

To the church in Ephesus: “To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God” (Revelation 2:7).  The other of the two infamous trees in the Garden of Eden that we’ve been banished from since Adam and Eve disobeyed God and took from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 2:17; 3:23). This promise reveals that we who overcome are, at last, admitted back into paradise with God.  God’s cherubim and flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life (Genesis 3:24) will then be removed, thanks be to Jesus for His overcoming our sin.

To the church in Smyrna: “He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death” (Revelation 2:11). The second death is mentioned more in Revelation, chapter 20:6,14 and chapter 21:8.  In context, the second death appears to be “death and Hades…thrown into the lake of fire.  The lake of fire is the second death.” As this understanding of what the second death is, it is consistent with the promise, thanks be to Jesus, that we will not be hurt at all by it.

To the church in Pergamum: “To him who overcomes, I will give some of the hidden manna.  I will also give him a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to him who receives it” (Revelation 2:17).  The manna that God gave the Israelites in the desert to sustain them still sustains us in our proverbial deserts and now that we have “died, and our life is now hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3), the revealing of all things hidden will come to be when we overcome.  In addition, “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17) and, in Him, we have a new name, known only to Him, thanks be to Jesus.

To the church in Thyatira: “To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations…I will also give him the morning star” (Revelation 2:26-28).  Jesus calls Himself the bright Morning Star in Revelation 22:16, but Satan is also referred to as a morning star (Isaiah 14:12).  So which “morning star” are we to expect?  Jesus, of course, as His brightness easily overcomes the attempts of Satan to be “like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:14).  Thanks be to Jesus for the gift of the Holy Spirit who enables us to do His will until the end.

To the church in Sardis: “He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white.  I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels” (Revelation 3:5). Never will He blot out our names from the book of eternal life with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Thanks be to Jesus, we have overcome and are written in the book, adorned in white, known by our Father and his angels.

To the church in Philadelphia: “Him who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God.  Never again will he leave it.  I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on him my new name” (Revelation 3:12). Thanks be to Jesus, we have overcome and will be pillars standing tall in the temple of the Lord, the new Jerusalem, where “the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them” (Revelation 21:3).

To the church in Laodicea: “To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne” (Revelation 3:21).  Thanks be to Jesus, who by overcoming, gives us the right to sit with Him on His throne, for all eternity.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Because He has overcome, we will overcome.

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