Saturday, August 05, 2006

overcoming as victorious ones

Nike is a transliteration of the koine Greek word meaning, "victory", nikao the verb, meaning, "conquer, overcome; win the verdict (Ro 3.4)" (Barclay M. Newman, Jr., A Concise Greek-English Dictionary of the New Testament).

Christus Victor is a view of the atonement that sees Christ as the victor, by the cross and empty tomb. By his death, resurrection and ascension (resulting in the coming of the Spirit), to be completely and fully realized at his return, Jesus has conquered. And we, in Jesus, are to follow in his steps. We too, by simple faith are to be victorious, sharing in the victory of Jesus. Who defeated sin, death, and all the hosts arrayed against him.

This sounds good, and we believe it as a confession (from Scripture) of our faith. But where the rubber meets the road, do we really live it out? Do we live as overcomers, or victorious ones, and what does that really mean, and look like?

It looks like a person, taking up their cross. Following the Savior. To better come to know him and become like him in his death. So as to share in his resurrection life. Sharing with Jesus in his death, means sharing with Jesus in his resurrection. And this sharing, which begins at baptism, is to be part and parcel of our lives in the here and now. Meaning a life like Jesus lived. In union with Jesus. In the triune God. By the Spirit.

It means a new prayer ("the Lord's prayer"- Matthew 6) and a new perspective when the trials inevitably come. We are living out in the here and now, what Jesus lived out before us. He blazed the way for us, in the days of his humiliation. And he is our glorified head now, as we, his body, live in the days of our humiliation, prior to our glorification in him. Called to be, in him, victorious ones who call and invite others to join us in this new life and humanity. No matter what we run up against, knowing that there is always God's answer and help.

We need this "shot in the arm". We need to remember who we belong to. And what he has done. And what that means. We're not to go around, hanging our heads down, trying merely to survive and keep our heads above water. But in God's love, together, and even perhaps by ourselves, as both Jesus and Paul experienced- though such times should be exceptions to the rule; we're meant to be in this journey, and triumphal procession in Jesus, together, not by ourselves- we are to thrive, and be victorious, more than conquerors through him who loved us. Amen.

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