“Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” (I John 4:4)
This simple verse carries a wealth of meaning on so many levels.
Many times I have found comfort from this when walking in some dark place at night; wondering what else might be lurking around me. Dark things physical as well as spiritual.
But that is only one part of the meaning.
Consider how this relates to the personal struggles we each wage against sin in our lives. And how we are often so beaten down, and torn apart by our own temptations and failures.
A False View of a Mature Saint of God
The mature believer does not see himself as some “pure” saint. As the hyper-religious often try to portray themselves. As if we are Christians with some ever-increasing confidence in our own “holiness” or “righteousness”. In fact, the contrary is what is true for the seasoned Christian.
As one grows closer to the Lord, it is impossible not to see ourselves as less worthy of the gifts He has given us. Rather than those who think they are more deserving of His mercy and grace. As we get closer to the Light of the Lord, our own impurities cause us to have less confidence in our own abilities to fight against sin.
Especially, as we understand how we are under siege by the demonic forces around us. Who would distract us from looking at the Lord by focusing on ourselves, our own resources, or our own performance.
The Source of Our Peace
Instead, we find our hope increasingly in the Lord Himself. In all that He is.
And we find our peace when we look at the Lord who dwells in us – the Christ in you, as Paul’s letter to the Colossians says.
He is the only good thing within us.
The good thing in us is not some separate Christian identity that develops within us, that we can present to Him. It is the Lord within us that is greater than Satan or his demonic hordes or the sinfulness of our own inner selves.
The Lord is greater than all our foes. And He is greater than any strength that we can muster to fight any battles – physical or spiritual – seen or unseen.
A Bottle in the Sea
I am reminded of a pamphlet written by AB Simpson called, Himself. It speaks of Christ, Himself. Of the Lord who dwells within us. And how we are like a bottle in the sea. The sea is the Lord. We have the Lord within us and we dwell in Him who surrounds us; as the sea surrounds a bottle.
So, we are surrounded by Him even as we are indwelt by Him. Fully and eternally immersed in Him. Who is greater than all that we will ever face in this life or the next.
It is the Lord Himself that is continually fashioning us to be what He wants us to be. He is our Captain. The Captain of the Sea of Eternity. The Captain of the Lord’s Host who will always be there to fight our battles for us.
“Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.” (I Thessalonians 5:24)