How to Overcome Evil With Good Instead of Being Overcome By Evil – Rom. 12:21
Quote:184. "Faith enables us to understand what God does. Faith enables us to see what others cannot see. As a result, faith enables us to do what others cannot do."(Wiersbe, 318)
Overcome: From the Greek word nikao meaning to prevail over, to master, to be victorious. We have a choice in every situation to either be a victor or to be vanquished. Too many believers are failing to experience consistent victory over their anger, fear and selfish desires. Jesus wants us to experience His life in all of its abundance, but too many Christians today are allowing themselves to be defeated by the world, the flesh and the devil. Quote: He, who overcomes with the good of patience, forbearance, kindness, and beneficence to those who have wronged you, is better than the mighty. Here are a few guidelines for overcoming evil with good instead of succumbing to power of evil that seeks to defeat us emotionally, mentally, physically, socially and spiritually.
1. PRAISE God that you are already a conqueror through Christ who loves you. (Rom. 8:37) THANK God for making you a conqueror over sin, human desires and evil through the power of Christ who lives within each believer. Too many Christians fail to appropriate, recognize and utilize the power of Christ to help them do everything God asks them to do. We cannot experience what it is to be an overcomer unless we recognize and thank God for what we already have in our new identity in Christ and in the body of believers WE belong to. Paul wrote, “He has put all things under His feet and appointed Him as head of the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all things in all ways and makes everything complete, and who fills everything everywhere with Himself. (Eph. 1:22,23) Praise God for giving you His overcoming power a member of His body.
2. OVERSHADOW any opposition with His mighty power. To overshadow something is to let it appear much more prominent or important. Be like Mary who learned how to let the power of God overshadow any negative criticism, misunderstanding, or misconstruing of the facts when she was told, “Nothing is impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37) “Then the angel said to Mary, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you like a shining cloud and so the holy offspring will shall be born of you.” (Luke 1:35)
3. OVERLOOK another’s fault. To overlook is to fail to notice, to ignore, and to look beyond. Proverbs 19:11 says, “A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense.” Learn to be bigger than any problem through the power that Christ gives you. In a day when lawsuits and people are quick to demand their rights Paul tells us that we are not to take vengeance in to our hands, but leave room for God’s wrath. We are to overcome with forgiveness that will break the cycle of retaliation and lead to reconciliation. The alternative is terrible because returning evil for evil hurts us just as much as it hurts an opponent. Forgiving another person frees you of the heavy load of bitterness that defiles many. Choose to be better rather than bitter from every situation.
4. OVERFLOW with love, hope, joy and faith. The Greek word is hyperperisseuo, which means to abound more exceedingly. To overflow means to extend beyond the limits by going over the brim of vessel. David wrote, “My cup overflows.” (Psa. 23:5,6) People who allow the Spirit of God to empower them will have the spiritual resources that allow them to overflow with kindness, patience, and a harvest of righteousness. People who are overflowing of the fruits of the Spirit will be able to replace any negative tendency with righteousness, godliness, faith, love and peace. A person who is in close communion with the Lord, His Spirit and His word will overflow with the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. Quote: “He that cannot quietly bear an injury is perfectly conquered by it.” (Matthew Henry)
5. OVERPOWER with Christ’s mighty power working in and through you. Paul wrote, “I can do everything God asks me to do with the help of Christ who gives me the strength and power.” (Phil. 4:13) Plug in to the power source of Christ’s word, His presence and His love so you do give in to the temptation of responding out of your flesh instead of Christ’s power in you. He who began a good work in you is able to complete it. (Phil. 1:6) Do not doubt, fret or get sidetracked by unimportant problems that are like insects that can be warded off with Christ’s powerful repellants. God told Zerubbabel, “Not by power or by might, but by my Spirit says the Lord. Mountains will be removed.”
6. OVERRULE with the power of the Holy Spirit’s presence, power and perspective. The Greek word for sufficient in 2 Cor. 12:9 means "self-rule" in other words, God’s grace is sufficient to rule in all situations regardless of our deficiencies. The Spirit of God and the word of God have enough power to overrule any opposition force. Cast all of your cares upon on the Lord and He will sustain you. He will never allow the righteous to be defeated. Jesus said, “In the world, you will have tribulation but be of good cheer as I have overcome the world. I will send to you another comforter who will be with you.” (John 16:33) He will guide you into all truth. For it is God who is at work in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure. (Phil. 2:13,14) Right actions often lead to good feelings. Do not wait until you feel like being an overcomer.
7. DO NOT OVERBLOW negative pressures. Too many problems get overblown because individuals inflate the importance of a difficulty beyond their power to cope. People who allow a minor offense to be blow out of proportion are succumbing to their emotions instead of thinking objectively about their Christian responsibilities.
8. DO NOT OVER-REACT to problems. People who occasionally respond more strongly than is justified when they are irritated. Many cases of road rage today are examples of people who have over-reacted when they needed to allow the Spirit help them practice self-control behind the wheel. Parents who over-react to their children’s idiosyncrasies often need to show love, concern and a calm manner to those who are still in the process of maturing into an adult.
9. DO NOT OVERSTATE your difficulties. Some people have a tendency to state too strongly or exaggerate their hardships. Realize that “No temptation that has taken you but such as is common to man. But God will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able. With each temptation He will provide a way of escape so you can be able to bear it.” (I Cor. 10:13)
10. DO NOT BE OVERWHELMED by what you are up against. To be overwhelmed is to allow oneself to be over powered with emotion, burdens or excessive negative thinking. Remember that the power of Christ is far greater than any opposition force. Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. (I John 4:4) Just when you think the problems, predicament and opponents are too great for you thank God that faith is the victory that overcomes the world. (I John 5:4,5) John wrote, “Whatever is born of God is victorious over the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith. Who is it that is victorious over the world and who conquers the world, but he who BELIEVES that Jesus is the Son of God, who trusts, adheres and relies on that fact.” (I John 5:4,5 – Amplified Bible)
11. DO NOT BE OVERLY CRITICAL. Jesus said, “Before you try to take the speck out of your brothers eye, first remove the log from your own eye.” James wrote, “What is the source of conflict and quarrels among you, is it not your own desires, you want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures… God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you.” (James 4:2-4; 6,7) Allow the Lord to determine what is best for you instead of insisting on getting what you think you deserve or want or need.
12. DO NOT OVERDO anything. Some people become so extreme in certain practices that they lose the balance of a Christ centered perspective. One well-meaning man became so wrapped up in evangelism that he felt he needed to go to all the capital cities of the world and preach the gospel. So he bought a plane ticket to 100 cities and preached the gospel in the city square for one day and came home thinking he had completed Christ’s great commission. We must always be careful that we do not become so legalistic, traditionalistic, spiritistic or humanistic that we fail to find our balanced perspective in Christ. Luke wrote, “Jesus continued to grow in wisdom, stature and in favor with God and men. (Luke 2:52)
13. DO NOT OVEREMPHASIZE hardships. People who talk or think too much about the negatives aspects of life are apt to forget about the part of their glass that is full of positives. Some people have a tendency to overemphasize problems because they live more by fear than by faith. Remember how Moses refused to allow the people of Israel overemphasize their difficulties when he led them to the Promised Land and through the Red Sea experience.
14. BE OVERJOYED in the Lord. Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say rejoice, Paul wrote in Phil. 4:4. “ Trust in the Lord and do good. Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Trust also in Him and He will bring things to pass. Commit your way to the Lord and He will do it.” (Psa 37:3-5) Be thankful for the good things you have. The good things you have are for many just a dream so be thankful for the good things you have. More than 2 billion people will live on less than a dollar today. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing and in everything give thanks for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (I Thes. 5:16-18)
Conclusion: I passed a sand lot yesterday,
Some kids were playing ball
I strolled along the third base line
Within the fielder’s call.
"Say, what’s the score?" I asked.
He yelled to beat the stuffing,
"There’s no one out, the bases full,
They’re winning forty-two to nothing!"
"You’re getting beat, aren’t you my friend?"
And then in no time flat
He answered, "No, sir, not as yet!
Our side hasn’t been up to bat!"