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Victory....BELIEVE IT and RECEIVE IT!!!

Greetings my brothers and sisters in the glorious, VICTORIOUS, mighty name of Jesus Christ our Savior and Sustainer!!!! Praise God!

I am not sure if this is the right place for this type of post and if it's not, please forgive me, but I just had to share this with you guys! It is from the leader of the small Bible Study group that my husband and I attend every Monday night. It's regarding Chapter 3 of the book "The Life That Wins" by Watchman Nee. If you haven't read this book, I highly recommend it! The great thing about Nee is that he totally points you back to the Source of all things and uses God's own Word to help you see clearly how we OBTAIN (not attain) the life that wins....AMEN! I hope you guys are as encouraged by this as I was! God bless you! Start singing it now...VICTORY IN JESUS...

Chapter 3

Now that we have examined our NEED for victory and our LACK of possessing the promises of Scripture given for all believers to walk therein, we begin our look at the overcoming life. What is it? What are we after here in this pursuit of ours? Ah, already we see that we fall short. For it is not a WHAT that we are after at all – but a WHO!

We must, at the beginning of our look at victory, state and boldly declare that victory is not the believer performing at a higher level. It is NOT the believer doing anything! In fact, victory can only begin when the believer has been completely done away with. We are the problem! God does not improve upon our flesh. “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit” (John 3:6). Victory for the Christian is NOT God working on the flesh to make it do better. God only has one answer for the flesh: it must die!

Victory is a matter of SUBSTITUTION. Nee describes it this way: “victory is the person of Christ living for you!” It is a substituted life. Christ has become our life! “For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory” (Colossians 3:3-4).

Mr. Nee now sets forth five characteristics of this substituted, overcoming, victory-life in Christ. Let’s take a look.

The Meaning of This Life –
Not a Changed Life, but an Exchanged One

Watchman Nee declares that “Victory is not that I have changed, but rather that I have been exchanged.” Then he immediately takes us to the Scriptures. Look at this powerful verse: “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). What a glorious and bold statement! Because of my identification with Christ in His crucifixion, “it is no longer I….but Christ.”
Oh, that God would speak this phrase to our spirit man! No longer I, but Christ! Why do I ever suffer defeat and failure? Because I am living rather than Christ living through me! Victory is not at all about me, but about Christ. Praise God!

God, in giving us the Law, knew that we would not be able to keep it. But He gave it to us anyway. It’s purpose was (and is) to reveal sin. All along God knew that He would give His Son to do for us and in us what we could not accomplish on our own. The gospel did not begin after Jesus was resurrected and sent out His followers. The gospel began in eternity past in the heart and mind of God!

“knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things…but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you” (1 Peter 1:18a,19-20).

Nee also asserts that it would not be easier to enter the victory-life if one’s flesh were not as “bad” as others. It is not a matter of how easy or difficult it seems to overcome the flesh. The problem is that it is flesh! “So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:8).

Are you beginning to get? Only one life can please God, and that is Christ’s life! So victory is when we quit living and start dying! It is when we know that we are crucified with Christ, count it to be so (“reckon”) and present ourselves to God as alive from the dead – walking in the Spirit!

Nee closes with this wonderful thought: “No temptation is too severe that I cannot prevail. For the life that wins is Christ, not I. Will Christ ever be fearful of a big sin? Will He be afraid of great temptation? Praise God, I no longer fear because hereafter it is Christ and not I.

The Principle of This Life –
A Gift, Not a Reward

Now our friend makes known the difference between a gift and a reward. A gift is given by the grace of the giver, but a reward is given out of obligation. Someone EARNS a reward, but does not earn a gift. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57). The victory is a gift! In fact, everything God gives is a gift. Nothing can be bought or earned from God.

Do we trust Christ to be our victory, or do we still feel we need to help Him out? Do we still believe we need to exert effort on our own part? “O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you…? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?” (Galatians 3:1a, 3).

Nee compares the believer’s attempt to earn victory with a sinner’s effort to be saved. We easily understand and believe that a sinner cannot do anything to earn salvation. No works can merit this gift. But we must understand that the overcoming life is the same way! We cannot work for it; we can only believe!

The Way to This Life –
Obtained, Not Attained

Now we look at the way of this life. Watchman Nee teaches that the word OBTAIN better describes the entry to victory rather than ATTAIN, which smacks of self-effort, long processes and work. He gives us his classic mountain climbing illustration. Think of climbing a large mountain. As you climb higher and higher and grow more and more weary you realize that it is a long and difficult journey. Finally you reach the top. This is attaining the mountain. But suppose someone carried you up the mountain? Then you would obtain it. How many believers are trying to climb their way up the mountain to victory?

Victory is something that can be immediately received! There is a moment when the believer sees it and dives in. Let us pray that God would open our eyes to see His gospel!

Possessing This Life Is a Miracle

In this shorter passage, we are reminded that entering into victory is a miraculous move of God. It is not something we can gain for ourselves. It is not natural, but super-natural. It is a matter of faith. The Lord Jesus is ABLE to work a miracle in your life and do great things for you!

The Consequence –
An Expressed Life, Not a Suppressed One

We see here that when we try to win victories in the flesh, what we produce is actually suppression of our failures, not victory over them. Nee illustrates, affirming that this can have negative effects on our physical health! Think about trying to bottle up sins and hide them so that they do not become visible to others. Is this victory? Certainly not! Christ is able to give us a sincere and real victory from the inside out! Glory to God! What He offers is not a counterfeit life that appears to be holy but is inwardly full of “dead men’s bones.” Jesus Christ comes in to live out a truly holy, powerful and victorious life through the surrendered believer. Mr. Nee correctly observes the wonderful difference between Christianity and other religions. He says that the difference is not only the matter of the cross, but also the “living Christ within us.” Do you believe this? Do you want Him to do this for you?

In closing, Nee affirms that, just as there is an actual moment when we are regenerated (born again), there is also a real moment in time when we enter into victory. He says that it must be yes or no. We cannot be almost saved, and we cannot be almost victorious. Almost born again is still lost in sin and dead to God! And almost victorious is still defeat. Let us pray that our God will indeed speak to us and open our eyes on this matter of victory. We must believe and receive! May God help us.

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