The Greatest Battle

In our lives, we will have many battles. We may have people coming against us or diseases that we must fight back against. There will be spiritual warfare where we must stand strong against the plans of the devil. But none of these things is the greatest battle we will have.

Early on in our faith, we come to know the Lord Jesus and are strengthened within by the power of the Holy Spirit. We progress in our faith in many areas, and it is commendable that we do so. But there is the greatest battle ahead of us before we can grow higher in our faith.

The greatest battle is with yourself. It is your will that opposes the will of God, and it is your will that must be conquered before you will give yourself over completely to the will of God. We can learn a thousand doctrines, but until we surrender our will, we remain a hindrance to what the Lord can do through us.

Until you surrender your will, you won’t be in His. Jesus prayed, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done” (Luke 22:42 NASB).

The greatest battle cannot be won by yourself because your self conspires to remain the same. We casually say we are crucified with Christ but live a life that proves otherwise. When the Lord Jesus brings it up, we sit back and wonder just how far does this crucifixion thing have to go?

Until you die to yourself, you will live to yourself. “My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20 NLT).

The greatest battle we face is ourselves because there is no other thing in your life more stubborn and selfish than you. We look at others and think surely there must be somebody worse off than ourselves. But the Lord Jesus only says, “What about you?”

There is no opponent more powerful, more cunning, more deceiving, more stubborn, more delusional, more ruthless, and more entrenched than yourself. That is why He said you have to die to yourself because He knows you will never surrender. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57 NKJV).

The greatest battle precedes the greatest faith that a person on earth could ever hope to have. But the battle must first be won, and the process is never easy. We think we can give up our will until we finally try to do it. Then we find that ferocious side of us trying to keep things our way.

Only God can take you higher than yourself. “For by You I can run at a troop of warriors; and by my God I can leap over a wall” (Psalm 18:29 NASB).

The Lord Jesus will neither plead with you nor entice you to give up your will. He will say it as sternly as it can be said and then leave it up to you to do it or not. Most will not, and so most will remain in a faith beneath what they were meant to have.

If you want to go on with God, you must stop living for yourself. Jesus taught, “If anyone wishes to follow Me [as My disciple], he must deny himself [set aside selfish interests], and take up his cross [expressing a willingness to endure whatever may come] and follow Me [believing in Me, conforming to My example in living and, if need be, suffering or perhaps dying because of faith in Me]” (Matthew 16:24 AMP).

We can easily understand what it means to get out of our will and then to get into His. But it will take the powers in heaven to help us do so. You cannot win this battle on your own, but the Lord won’t help you until you ask Him.

Ask the Lord what you need to change, and then ask Him to help you. “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me” (Psalm 51:10-11 ESV).

The greatest battle is won with the simple surrender to the Lord of the right to yourself. We think of that as a great loss because we have not yet considered the great gain of when the life of Jesus would be in us. Christ reigns in us to the degree that we let Him.

Whatever you don’t surrender to God is still in opposition to Him. “Now yield and submit yourself to Him [agree with God and be conformed to His will] and be at peace; in this way [you will prosper and great] good will come to you” (Job 22:21 AMP).

If you have not yet had this great battle, then you should. The preparation is not with weapons of war but the gentle flags of surrender. Dare to take the step into all that God can do with a man or a woman fully given over to Him.

Dare to become that man or woman that God wants you to be. “God has made us what we are. In Christ Jesus, God made us new people so that we would spend our lives doing the good things he had already planned for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10 ERV).

Blessings to you,

Paul Balius  

7 thoughts on “The Greatest Battle

  1. This is so very important to us all if we would live by the life of Christ in us, and not by our own lives. If we do not surrender all of ourselves to our own crucifixion by the power of our God in us, we will go on to live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Lord, save us from ourselves and our self will!

    Great word for us all today, Paul. Thank you!

  2. “if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live” Romans 8:13

    The Life can only be discovered through our cooperation with the Spirit’s power unto the mortification of self.

    A good share.

  3. Only when we by an act of our own will truly surrender our all to Jesus and say to Him “Have Thine Own Way Lord for Thou Art the Potter and I am the Clay” and put our complete trust in Him and His Word no matter what is happening in our life, can we enter into HIs Rest. What a wonderful place to be, entirely in His Capable Hands allowing the Holy Spirit to mold us into His Will and Likeness. It will cost us everything we think is dear but what we receive in exchange is eternal and abundantly exceeds anything this world can offer. Maranatha.

    1. Sorry on such a late reply, been heads down on a book project. You have such a good word here! I think you hit the nail on the head with what our faith should look like. I long that we would have more Christians pressing into this higher faith which is a surrender of everything we are. Blessings to you!

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