1 John 5:4 - Victory in Jesus!
Every child of God can obey him,
defeating sin and evil pleasure
by trusting Christ to help him.
1 John 5:4 (TLB)
To overcome the world is to gain victory over its sinful pattern
of life, which is another way of describing obedience to God (v.
3). Such obedience is not impossible for the believer because he has
been born again and the Holy Spirit dwells within him and gives him
strength. John speaks of two aspects of victory: (1) the initial victory
of turning in faith from the world to God ("has overcome"); (2) the
continuing day-by-day victory of Christian living ("overcomes"). [NIV SB]
Let no one think he can overcome without the help of God. You
must have the energy, the strength, the power, of an inner life
developed within you. You will then bear fruit unto godliness, and will
have an intense loathing of vice. You need to constantly strive to
work away from earthliness, from cheap conversation, from everything
sensual, and aim for nobility of soul and a pure and unspotted character.
Faith is the cause of victory, the means, the instrument, the
spiritual armour by which we overcome. In and by faith we cleave to
Christ, in contempt of, and in opposition to the world. Faith sanctifies
the heart, and purifies it from those sensual lusts by which the
world obtains sway and dominion over souls. It has the indwelling
Spirit of grace, which is greater than he who dwells in the world. The
real Christian overcomes the world by faith; he sees, in and by the
life and conduct of the Lord Jesus on earth, that this world is to be
renounced and overcome. He cannot be satisfied with this world, but looks
beyond it, and is still tending, striving, and pressing toward heaven.
We must all, after Christ's example, overcome the world, or it will
overcome us to our ruin. [Matthew Henry]
Jesus never promised that obeying him would be easy. But the
hard work and self-discipline of serving Christ is no burden to those
who love him. And if our load starts to feel heavy, we can always
trust Christ to help us bear it (see Matthew 11:28-30). [Life