Victory of Jesus Christ for the Believer Against All Opponents
A. When a sports team plays representing its country against another country, and wins, did its country win, or did the team win? And the country received the credit right? You see, the team gives the victory to the community that it represents doesnít it?
B. Take Col 2:13-15. On the cross, 2000yrs ago, a battle raged, and who won? Jesus Christ did! But did you know, that sinners have been enjoying His victory even though they never fought in His battle?
C. For the Irish, there is nothing like the Irish team winning the victory for Ireland! And for the sinner, there is nothing like a Saviour winning the victory for mankind! One is a victory, and the other is the Ultimate
II. Message - The Ultimate Victory (1 Cor 15:50-58)
A. Our Enemies (15:50-56). The Things That Are Against Us!
1. The victory had to be won over the flesh (15:50) - Our Conversion
a. There is something terribly wrong with our flesh, AND with our blood! Our flesh and blood will keep us out of heaven - because they are not perfect. They are ďcorruptĒ (impure, stained with sin, failures)
b. So, God sent His Son in flesh to be perfect for us! In flesh and blood, he lived a perfect life, and then shed perfect, sinless blood for the sinner!
c. And in so doing, He defeated the failures of our flesh.
d. So, the sinner must stop trying to improve on his or her flesh, and get born again (John 3:7)! As a matter of fact, God requires us to repent of our sinful life, and cling only to Christ! This is called salvation! See John 1:12,13
e. Without this new birth, your sinful flesh (corruption) will send you straight to hell!
2. The victory had to also be won over Death (15:51-) - Our Change
a. Paul here introduces two subjects: the resurrection, and the rapture. Both are Godís secret escapes from deathís dominion
1) Rom 6:23 says, unless God intervened all of humanity was doomed to die and die for all eternity in hell
2) Paul describes Godís answer as a change. What we needed was a change! No matter how good a person may be, they are a sinner (corruptible), and are going to die! And without a God ordained change that happens in the heart, death will win over a personís soul every time!
3) So God takes care of getting rid of this flesh that CANíT obtain heaven, and replaces it with a body that CAN!
a) A new resurrected (incorruptible) body for those who died trusting Jesus Christ
b) A new (incorruptible) body for those who are here and still alive when Jesus returns at the rapture
b. Notice how long this change takes place (15:52) - twinkle!
c. Notice how complete this victory is - death is done away with (15:53,54), swallowed up!
3. The victory finally had to also be won over Sin and the Law (15:55,56) - Our Spiritual Cleansing
a. For the unsaved, death has a stinger, and the grave has a victory! Why?
1) The stinger, or ďknock-out punchĒ of death is SIN!
2) The strength of sin is the LAW! Godís law backs up SINís claim on your soul. Those ten commandments are AGAINST us! They are not meant to save you, but meant to kill you!
b. What is needed for victory here is a way to nullify the power of sin over your eternity, and a way to get forgiveness for all past sins, and future ones
c. That way is found only in Jesus Christ (57). HE is our victory! He is our champion! He wipes out every foe and opponent that is against us! Our flesh, death, sin, and the law
B. Our Champion (15:57) - All Glory to Him!
1. There are lots of enemies (Rom 8:35). But God says that we can be more than conquers against them all, how (Rom 8:37)?
2. Jesus Christ won the victory for all mankind, and made it available to us as a gift - cannot be purchased or earned! HE EARNED IT! And if it took Him to earn it, then all we can do is by faith reach out and accept it as a gift
3. The purpose of God sending His Son Jesus Christ to earth was to take on our enemies head on, and defeat them, and by so doing, GIVE us the victory that we could not earn!
4. This is why the Christian is so joyful, and should never be ďdown-in-the-mouthĒ and depressed! HE HAS THE VICTORY! He possesses it right now! He got it by simply repenting of the sin that was killing him, and then asking for complete forgiveness from Christ! And once he got it, he got it all!!!
C. This Victory Presents Us With A Challenge Though (15:58)
1. The Lord is writing to Christians - ďbeloved brethren.Ē If you are not saved, then he is also writing to you, and has challenged you to trust Jesus Christ for victory over flesh, death, sin, and law. There is a response needed by YOU! God does not impose the victory on you. You have to want it, and simply ask (Rom 10:13)
2. Christian? If you are saved, then there is a responsibility. Godís challenge to us is to:
a. Be steadfast - Stand on Christ alone! You trusted Him alone for salvation didnít you? Well, trust Him for everything else!
b. Be unmoveable - Hold your ground. Determine what is right to do according to Godís word, and then do it - come hell or high water! Set your course to follow Christ!
c. Be always abounding in the work of the Lord! Be busy serving Jesus Christ. Donít be a lazy Christian! Includes:
1) By being a Life - Live like Jesus would live - pure, holy
2) By being a Light - Care for people like Jesus cared - think of others before yourself, and tell others how to know Christ as their Saviour
d. Be aware of Godís record system. Your labours are never in vain when done for the Lord. He will reward us based on our efforts (I will teach you more about this tonight!)
III. Conclusion - The Ultimate Victory
A. Who Are Our Enemies? (15:50-56) Things That Are Against Us!
1. Our flesh (15:50) - We Needed Conversion
2. Death (15:51-) - We Needed A Change
3. Sin and the Law (15:55,56) - We Needed Spiritual Cleansing
B. Who Is Our Champion? (15:57) The purpose of God sending His Son Jesus Christ to earth was to take on our enemies head on, and defeat them, and by so doing, GIVE us the victory that we could not earn!
C. What Is Our Challenge? (15:58)
1. First to trust Christ - get saved
2. If you are saved, then be steadfast; be unmoveable; be always abounding in the work of the Lord; be aware of Godís record system.
Bible Baptist Church Blarney
29 Westcourt Heights
Ballincollig, Cork, Ireland