The secret of the victorious Christian life is that it is not yours to accomplish but to surrender to. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57).
You cannot “white-knuckle” your way to living the victorious Christian life. God knows you can’t do it, and that is why He will do it for you. But He will not overtake you, only receive you when once you are finally ready to surrender yourself to Him.
Victory over sin only comes when the Lord Jesus has victory over you. His victory over you only comes when you surrender to Him. “Submit to God, and you will have peace; then things will go well for you” (Job 22:21 NLT).
You cannot have the victory without the surrender. “So then, surrender to God…” (James 4:7 TPT).
The greater your surrender to Christ, the greater His victory will be in you. “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me…” (Galatians 2:20).
Too many of us remain on the mouse-wheel of good works, thinking that somehow if we run fast enough, we just might get somewhere. It is our pride that puts us on that mouse-wheel, and it is our pride that keeps us there. The only thing that can get us off the mouse-wheel is when we finally surrender to Him.
If you are struggling, then you are not surrendering. “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3).
Nobody struggles in surrendering, but only in getting there.
Surrendering is never hard, but deciding to is. The Lord Jesus taught, “He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it” (Matthew 10:39). One life is your natural man, the other is your spiritual man. One must surrender the natural man that the spirit man would have the victory.
There is no one thing that is a greater aversion to our flesh more than surrendering our flesh. It goes against our flesh nature to surrender our flesh and submit to the will of God. We can say we want to be in His will, but before we finish that sentence, we have already determined in our mind we will not do it. It is not what we say but what we do that reveals whether we are surrendered or not.
Victory is found where surrendering begins. “…be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” (Ephesians 6:10).
The degree you are surrendered to the Lord is the degree you walk in victory. “…I encourage you to surrender yourselves to God to be his sacred, living sacrifices” (Romans 12:1 TPT).
If you lack self-control it is because you try to control yourself on your own. You against you is just “check mate” with no victory. You need help to overcome yourself. Self-control comes by the Holy Spirit because only the Holy Spirit can set you free from you. “But the fruit of the Spirit is…self-control…” (Galatians 5:22-23).
Surrendering is the hard work of coming to that place where you realize you cannot do the hard work. Surrendering puts us in a position of helplessness, where everything in us opposes being in that position. But it is from such a position that a Christian can be settled with God, knowing their complete inability to walk in victory of themselves, and so be where God can then be the victory in them.
The secret to victory in the life of a saint is that the victory is the Lord’s. “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in victory through Christ…” (2 Corinthians 2:14 ERV).
The only way to have victory over your will is to surrender your will. Jesus modeled this when He prayed to the Father, “…not My will, but Yours, be done” (Luke 22:42).
The greatest victory you will ever have is when you finally surrender. “…reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:11).
We squander His strength by trying to be victorious in our own strength. We live meager lives because we rely upon the meager resources in ourselves. But there is a greater life we can live. There is a higher order we are meant to walk in. And all it takes to get there is your surrender such that He gains the victory in you.
Your thought life is your life. To change your life, change your thinking. You cannot control your thoughts, but only surrender them to the One who can. Surrender so you are, “…bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). Be captured in Christ.
The Christian life is upside down to the worldly life. Surrender to be victorious. Bow down to be lifted up. Empty yourself to be filled. Die to yourself to gain life. Get out of your will to get into His will. Be enslaved to Him to gain freedom from yourself. “Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?” (Romans 6:16).
Sanctification is the process whereby the right to your life is surrendered over to Christ, parcel by parcel. The process is only complete when there remains no ground in your life upon which you can stand and say, “mine”. “Or do you not know that…you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
My prayer is to see more Christians walking in the victory God has meant for them to have. Wherever I fail I find something yet to be surrendered. Won’t you be willing to let Him show you what you have yet to let go of? We cannot go higher and still hold onto the lower things.
Blessings to you,
All Scripture is quoted from the New King James Version unless otherwise noted. Please use the version you prefer to review the verses shown here. The best version is the one you read. An even better version is the one you live.
10 thoughts on “The Secret of the Victorious Christian Life”
Well done Paul. Another excellent post and so spot on. The trials always come down to our ability to surrender and follow His will. Of course our old ‘self’ nature will fight tooth and nail to avoid being destroyed but it cannot stop our free will in choosing to follow Jesus.
Thank you so much for this truth Paul.
Thank you, Homer. And you are so right, our trials always come down to whether we surrender or not. How hard we often try to do things on our own which we can never do on our own, and then when we fail we are miserable because we could not do them. Oh, how much we need to learn to just surrender all.
Blessings to you,
Always enjoy the words of inspiration and truth that God provides through your ministry. Thank you for surrendering in order to help us in our surrender!
Katherine, thank you so much for your kind words! I love how God uses us to minister to each other. I appreciate your ministry to me.
Wonderful post. Thanks.
Thank you so much, Anita!
Wonderful post Paul…..
Thank you, Jeanne!
Beloved Paul, where I am and have been for so long a time is Romans 7:14-24 which in the AMP reads:
14 We know that the Law is spiritual, but I am a creature of the flesh [worldly, self-reliant—carnal and unspiritual], sold into slavery to sin [and serving under its control]. 15 For I do not understand my own actions [I am baffled and bewildered by them]. I do not practice what I want to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate [and yielding to my human nature, my worldliness—my sinful capacity]. 16 Now if I habitually do what I do not want to do, [that means] I agree with the Law, confessing that it is good (morally excellent). 17 So now [if that is the case, then] it is no longer I who do it [the disobedient thing which I despise], but the sin [nature] which lives in me. 18 For I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my flesh [my human nature, my worldliness—my sinful capacity]. For the willingness [to do good] is present in me, but the doing of good is not. 19 For the good that I want to do, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. 20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want to do, I am no longer the one doing it [that is, it is not me that acts], but the sin [nature] which lives in me.
21 So I find it to be the law [of my inner self], that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 22 For I joyfully delight in the law of God in my inner self [with my new nature], 23 but I see a different law and rule of action in the members of my body [in its appetites and desires], waging war against the law of my mind and subduing me and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is within my members. 24 Wretched and miserable man that I am! Who will [rescue me and] set me free from this body of death [this corrupt, mortal existence]? 25 Thanks be to God [for my deliverance] through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind serve the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh [my human nature, my worldliness, my sinful capacity—I serve] the law of sin.
I reckon that the first part of v. 25 must be the surrender to the superscendent splendor of our Savior and Sanctifier of which you so well write.
Hello Stephen, apologies for such a late reply. I loved reading through the Scripture you posted. The Amplified is so rich to help expand on the words with greater meaning. I am drawn to Romans chapters 6 and 8, with 6 being the ultimate surrender, dying to oneself, and 8 being the ultimate stepping into the new man, with the Spirit helping us! Blessings to you!