Being a Christian is difficult. It’s a struggle to live in accordance with the law of Christ. Though I am a new creation in Christ, redeemed for good works and holiness, the old part of me will not admit defeat. Sin will fight for every square inch of my mind and heart. It is the sore loser that will not graciously exit the competition. It is the enemy within me, giving me no peace as long as it lives.
As the apostle Paul puts it, “I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand.” A law! A certainty! Even my best efforts at pleasing God are tainted with sinful motives. I find it easier to sin than to be holy.
I wish it were not so. I feel like I’m fighting a losing battle.
But Jesus must always have the last word on a matter like this.
Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25)
And you, who were dead in your trespasses, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.He disarmed the [demonic] rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in Christ [at the cross]. (Colossians 2:13-15)
Through death Jesus destroyed the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and delivered all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. (Hebrews 2:14-15)
You were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. (1 Peter 1:18-19)
The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. (1 John 3:8)
His words are like a bracing gust of fresh air on the stench-ridden battlefield of my heart. He is telling us that we are not fighting a losing battle. Sin is. Though the world, the flesh and the devil fight with all their might, he has decisively defeated them at the cross. He has disarmed them, destroyed every work of theirs, and delivered us from their power.
With Christ as our captain, the Spirit as our support, and the Word as our weapon, our victory over sin is assured. Let us confidently fight the good fight of faith and let the enemy within know it’s fighting a losing battle.