Text: Rev. 12:7-11

Title: "Overcoming By the Blood of the Lamb"

Subject: The Christian's victory is in the blood

Intro: The Bible says, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world"

I have noticed a disturbing trend among Christians, and I believe many of you might have some of the symptoms! This trend entails the giving up of a supernatural gift, bought and paid for by the shed blood of Jesus Christ, and replacing it with the anguish of your circumstances. The gift I am referring to is the "peace that passeth understanding," that supernatural peace that came the moment you placed your trust in Jesus Christ for salvation. Yet, I wonder how many this morning are, in a state of war over some circumstance in your life? By war, I mean you are in the midst of agitation and tumult, facing a battle, whether marriage, family, finances, job, health, spiritual responsibilities, or any other aspect of life that has robbed you of your peace! Before God you would have to confess, "I do not have peace this morning"!

But the Bible says, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world"

Bro. Darst, I am not really at war, but I am anxious (that's sin!); uneasy (that's sin!); worried (that's sin!); apprehensive (that's sin!); I have a sense of foreboding (that's sin!); concern (that's sin!); tension (that's sin!); fretfulness (that's sin!); dread (that's sin!); fear (that's sin!); and/or alarm (that's sin!)! Though each of these fears are human, they are still sin. You see, anything less than total dependence on, trust in, and peace through Jesus Christ is sin! And anything less than experiencing the fullness of Christ's peace is living beneath your privileges as a child of God! You don't want to do that and neither do I.

The Bible says, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world"

Our message this morning is going to focus on war, tribulation, and how to overcome these circumstances of life.

Rev. 12:7-11 -- "Overcoming By the Blood of the Lamb" -- prayer

Context: The time frame of this passage is the middle of the Great Tribulation Period of 7 years. This is the next great prophetic event on God's calendar.

First, all those who have received Jesus Christ as Saviour, have been caught up (raptured) to meet Christ in the air. The the Jews have made a covenant with the anti-Christ for the sake of "peace," which by the middle of the Tribulation period has been broken. The two Jewish prophets have been slain in the streets, and then resurrected from the dead before the TV cameras of the world. The remnant of the Jews have fled Jerusalem for the safety of the wilderness city of Petra. Many Gentiles have received Jesus Christ as Saviour, and most are quickly put to death. God's full wrath is about to fall on this earth and all who inhabit it. While chaos consumes this earth, the Bible directs our attention toward heaven, as the heavenly war to end all wars takes place!

I. THE REALITY OF WAR (v7-9)

A. War in Heaven (?) (v7-8) (The last place we would suspect!)

1. The adversaries

a. Michael, the archangel, and the elect angels

b. Satan, the anointed cherub, who fell from angelic grace taking 1/3 of the angelic host with him, which are now known as demons.

B. War on Earth (v9)

Note: If there will be war in heaven, should we be surprised by war on earth? Shall not Satan and his host, cast from access to heaven, spill their venom on the inhabitants of earth? Will not the great deceiver have as his goal to rob every believer of the peace he/she has in Christ and to keep every unbeliever from experiencing this same peace in Christ? Will he be satisfied with less?

Though this war is still future, it is as sure as tomorrow's dawn, and Satan's continuing activities and ultimate defeat have present effects on the inhabitants of earth.

1. Dishonored (v8) ("their place not found")

a. Pride causes a loss of peace

2. Displaced (v8) ("from heaven")

a. Covetousness causes a loss of peace (longing for things that do not & probably should not belong to you)

3. Great dragon (v9) ("large kind of serpent, known for its sight")

a. Lust of the eyes causes a loss of peace

4. Old serpent (v9) (shining reptile)

a. Lust of flesh or desire for outward adornment (materialism) causes a loss of peace

5. The Devil (v9) ("slanderer")

a. Slandering the acts or motives of others causes a loss of peace 6. Satan (v9) ("adversary")

a. To be in competition with others, to be an opponent causes a loss of peace

7. Deceiver (v9) ("to make to wander, lead astray; religious deceit, doctrinal error")

a. To not know what and why you believe what you believe causes a loss of peace

b. To be self deceived causes a loss of peace

"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us" 1 John 1:8

1) Whole world is deceived, and you are influenced by the world

8. Demonic multitudes (v9)

a. The underestimating of the power of our adversaries causes a loss of peace

9. Accuser (v10) ("to speak against; before judges")

a. Knowingly giving ammunition to the Devil to accuse us before the Father causes a loss of peace

1) Day and night

b. Accusing the brethren causes a loss of peace

Note; There is your unrest, , there is your battlefield, there is your possible defeat!

"From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not." James 4:1-2 Your unrest, or lack of peace, is a sin problem!

"Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul" 1 Peter 2:11 Your unrest, or lack of peace, is a spiritual problem, which goes to the very depths of your person!

"And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us: And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him. 1 John 5:14-15 When your confidence is restored in Christ, you will experience His peace!

I. The Reality of War

II. THE REALITY OF VICTORY (v10)

A. What Comes (as to source) From Our God

1. Salvation ("deliverance; final victory; safety, preservation from danger, destruction")

a. God's deliverance for God's children

2. Strength ("power; power capable of action & power in action":

a. God's strength to strengthen His own

3. Security ("kingdom of our God")

a. God's imparted knowledge of our final destination

b. [Millennial] Kingdom of our God

4. Power ("authority; ability to use power")

a. Of His Christ (uniquely related to, anointed, and appointed by God)

b. The power resides in God, but the authority to use the power resides in Christ

5. When it Comes From God

a. Now! At the moment of need! The eternal now!

1) There are 396 "nows" in the N.T.! God is a God of now!

Note: How many times this past Wed. did Alice and Kathy say that God provided just in time--now! Why are you waiting to trust God for your need? Why not just trust Him--now! and let Him meet the need now!, though the visible answer might come later--in His time!?

B. What is the Responsibility of Man (v11)

1. "And they overcame," ("to be victorious, to conquer")

Note: While waiting for the manifestation of God on our behalf, we are to be victorious overcomers! The Christian who lives in defeat is defeated for sure, but the Christian who lives in victory, overcomes defeat, despite outward circumstances!

a. A direct act of the will (Christianity is hard work!)

"I will approach Thee--I will force my way through obstacles to Thee;

To Thee for strength will have recourse, to Thee for consolation flee!"

2. To apply ("by") the Blood, the Word, and our lives

Note: We are not just to appreciate the Blood, we are to apply the Blood!

We are not just to read the Word, we are to apply the Word!

We are not just to live our lives, we are to apply our lives for His sake!

C. What is the Responsibility of Jesus Christ

1. It is represented by "the blood"

a. "The blood" speaks of death

"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, and that He was buried...," 1 Cor. 15:3-4

Note: Ah, there you have it preacher! You claim you can be an overcomer, and that you can gain the victory, but the One you follow died in defeat on the cross, and was buried once and for all!

Ah, but unbelieving friend, you did not let me finish the sentence: "...and that He rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Cor. 15:4

"I Am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I Am alive for evermore..." Rev. 1:18

b. "The blood" speaks of death and resurrection!

Note: Defeat, unrest, and loss of peace are a direct result of losing the sense of awe and wonder at the sheding of the blood, the death, of Jesus Christ for you!

2. It is represented by "the Lamb"

a. "The Lamb" is the Lord Jesus Christ, and He is so called 24 times in the book of Revelation. John the Baptist, a man sent from God, identified Jesus Christ as "the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world."

b. "The Lamb" speaks of a substitutionary sacrifice for sin

"But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God" Hebrews 10:12

Note: The responsibility of the blood of the Lamb is to provide us with access to the Father, and therefore, all the necessary power and provision that the Father wields on our behalf.

D. What is the Responsibility of the Word? (v11)

1. The "Word" is the incarnation of Jesus Christ committed to writing; inspired, inerrant, infallible, and preserved to make one wise unto salvation.

"And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." 2 Tim. 3:15

2. It is to give us a truthful basis for our testimony ("a bearing witness, certifying")

"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear" 1 Peter 3:15

E. What is the Responsibility of Our Lives? (v11)

1. "To love not our lives"

a. To live before the world as dead men

"And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." Matthew 10:28

2. To live before God as resurrected men

"For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection" Romans 6:5

3. To live willingly for Christ, and to die willingly for Christ

"They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (Of whom the world was not worthy:)..." Heb 11:37-38

I. The Reality of War

II. THE REALITY OF VICTORY


III. THE METHOD OF OVERCOMING

A. Remember that the blood of the Lamb has overcome Satan. He is a defeated foe. Do not live in the realm of war and unrest any more, but rest in the peace provided through the Lord Jesus Christ.

B. Remind yourself that the blood of the Lamb has removed your sins as far as the east is from the west. Though you have an accuser who will dredge up the darkness of your past and the folly of your present, remind yourself that you also have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the righteous, who pleads His blood on your behalf.

C. Realize that the blood of the Lamb has made a way in your present circumstances. Despite the darkness of your path, the Lord is a Light unto your feet. Realize that your present circumstances are for your benefit and His glory. It is when we replace the darkness of our circumstances with the light of His presence, and the glory of our future, that we can have peace though our world disintegrates around us.

D. Rejoice that the blood of the Lamb provides access to the very throne room of heaven, and to the windows of heaven that pour out their blessings. Look at your circumstances through God's eyes, put them into God's perspective, and see if there is anything to hard for God.

E. And finally, realize that the blood of the Lamb has made you accepted in the beloved. Rejected and scorned by all or by some, yet accepted into the very presence of God the Father.

Concl: "And they overcame by the blood of the Lamb, the word of their testimony, and loved not their lives unto death." Where are some of you today? Are you shell-shocked at the turmoil around you? Are you at your wits end over some circumstance in your life? Perhaps the world has so drawn and persuaded you that you are ready to throw in the towel? Are you so sick of being ill that its affecting your health? Have your thrown up your hands at your marriage, your children, your job? In sum, have you lost one of the most precious possessions of a Christian--your peace?

Get it back, and get it back now! Say, "Dear God, I have lost my peace over this circumstance! I have not trusted your deliverance, your strength, your security, your power, or your provision in my life! Abba, Father, restore unto me the peace and joy of my salvation." Will you do it? Will you be restored to full spiritual health today?

Lost friend, you have no peace, and you will have no peace until you settled accounts with God and come to Jesus Christ for salvation. How about it? Will you do it today?
 

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