Archive for the ‘Victory’ Category

December 22nd, 2015

How Do You Overcome Sin?

“These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh.” Colossians 2:23 (ESV)

We live in the cross-section of the redeemed and the fallen. As the redeemed people of God living in a fallen world, the presence of persistent sin is still possible, falling victim to temptation even though we know its limitations and shortcomings. The question then becomes how one overcomes such sin. Should we submit to the human regulations mentioned by Paul, choosing simply not to handle, taste, or touch objects of temptation? Should we resort to asceticism or self-flagellation? Paul teaches we should not, as such actions may have the appearance of religious behavior but do nothing in terms of stopping the indulgence of the flesh, as anyone who has tried them can attest.

Paul writes that the key to overcoming sin is not focusing on the sin but rather on Christ. Think about it. If all you do is tell yourself to stop doing the sin, then your focus is entirely on the sin most likely leading to temptation. If, however, you avert your attention away from the sin to the satisfying truth of Christ, then suddenly, as the old hymn suggests, the things of this world become strangely dim.

Dear child of God, are you struggling with persistent sin? Do not beat yourself up consistently, living in condemnation. Rather remember who you are in Christ, repent, and refocus on the heavenly things He provides. Having done that, once again recognizing that you have died with Christ, then put to death what is earthly within you, living fully as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Colossians, Sin, Victory.
Interact No Comments
July 7th, 2015

Divine Intervention

“‘You will not need to fight in this battle. Stand firm, hold your position, and see the salvation of the Lord on your behalf, O Judah and Jerusalem.’ Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed. Tomorrow go out against them, and the Lord will be with you.” 2 Chronicles 20:17 (ESV)

Jehoshaphat proclaimed a fast throughout Judah in order to seek the Lord and to seek help from the Lord. A great multitude was coming against them in battle and they needed to hear from God. The Spirit of the Lord came upon Jahaziel and he communicated the will of God. He affirmed that the battle belonged to the Lord and that they were to stand firm and hold their position. Jahaziel exhorted the people to not be afraid and to not be dismayed because the Lord was with them.

  • “When Judah came to the watchtower of the wilderness, they looked toward the horde, and behold, there were dead bodies lying on the ground; none had escaped. 25 When Jehoshaphat and his people came to take their spoil, they found among them, in great numbers, goods, clothing, and precious things, which they took for themselves until they could carry no more. They were three days in taking the spoil, it was so much.” 2 Chronicles 20:24-25 (ESV)

What kind of battle are you facing? Seek the Lord and trust in Him to fight your battles. Don’t worry. Don’t fret. Entrust your life and your circumstances to the Lord’s care. Obey what God has shown you and stay close to His Word. Write down promises from God’s Word and claim them through prayer.

Perhaps you are in need of divine intervention. Cry out to God in prayer and express your desperation. Acknowledge your dependency upon God and walk in the light God gives you.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, July 7th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Chronicles, God's Provision, Victory.
Interact No Comments
April 8th, 2015

God’s Way to Victory

“The Lord said to Gideon, ‘The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel boast over me, saying, My own hand has saved me.’” Judges 7:2 (ESV)

Gideon considered his clan to be the weakest in Manasseh and himself the least of his father’s house. He did not feel qualified to lead the charge to defeat the Midianites. God confirmed His will through a fire, a fleece, and a formula. Gideon prepared a sacrifice and God sent an angel of the Lord.  “Then the angel of the Lord reached out the tip of the staff that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened cakes. And fire sprang up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened cakes” (Judges 6:21 ESV).

Gideon asked for additional clarification by asking God to fill a wool fleece with dew while keeping all the ground dry. God performed the miracle and Gideon wrung enough dew from the fleece to fill a bowl with water. The fleece was used again to test the validity of God’s will. This time, Gideon asked God to let the fleece remain dry while allowing there to be dew on all the ground. God performed that miracle.

The formula God chose for Gideon demonstrated God’s power in the midst of Gideon’s weaknesses. The formula involved reducing Gideon’s army from 32,000 to 300. Gideon and his army of 300 won the victory!

God’s way to victory does not always line up with our logical thought process. In our humanity, we tend to judge our circumstances from our limited point of view. God’s ways are higher than our ways (Isaiah 55:9).

The victory over our sin, our death, and our dilemma was won God’s way through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus!

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, April 8th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Gideon, Judges, Victory.
Interact No Comments
March 24th, 2015

God Fights For You

“And when you draw near to the battle, the priest shall come forward and speak to the people and shall say to them, ‘Hear, O Israel, today you are drawing near for battle against your enemies: let not your heart faint. Do not fear or panic or be in dread of them, for the Lord your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory.’” Deuteronomy 20:2-4 (ESV)

God gave the people of Israel tremendous favor as they obeyed His commands. He promised them victory as they drew near in battle against their enemies. There was no need to be in fear or to panic or to be in dread because God would go with them and fight for them against their enemies to ensure victory.

The battles we face as followers of Jesus Christ are spiritual in nature. We combat the devil, the world, and the flesh. The devil has an agenda that opposes God’s will. The world has a current that flows counter to God’s way. The flesh has an appetite that seeks to divert our devotion to God and to pollute our passion for the things of God.

  • “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12 (ESV)
  • “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:57 (ESV)

As you draw near to battle today, put on the full armor of God. Live in the power of the Holy Spirit and claim the victory that Jesus won when He died sacrificially and rose from the dead supernaturally.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, March 24th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Deuteronomy, Moses, Victory.
Interact No Comments
December 2nd, 2014

Victory Spiral

“And at the time of the offering of the oblation, Elijah the prophet came near and said, ‘O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word. Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that this people may know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you have turned their hearts back.’” 1 Kings 18:36-37 (ESV)

When you hear the name Elijah, your first inclination is to think of the major victory he experienced on Mt. Carmel. Elijah took on the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who ate at Jezebel’s table. Elijah is kind of like the “Rocky Balboa” of the Old Testament. He was not about to back down from the featured match between good and evil.

  • “Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering and the wood and the stones and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.” 1 Kings 18:38 (ESV)
  • “And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces and said, ‘The Lord, he is God; the Lord, he is God.’” 1 Kings 18:39 (ESV)

What a major demonstration of God’s power! What a miraculous response to Elijah’s prayer! God allowed Elijah to see and experience God’s favor. Elijah truly had a mountain top experience on Mt. Carmel. How could Elijah ever doubt God or deny God’s power after such a magnificent encounter?

You are most susceptible to sin after a major victory. Elijah experienced the downward spiral from victory to depression. How would God respond to Elijah’s desperation?

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014 at 12:00 pm
Category Elijah, Prayer, Victory.
Interact No Comments
October 31st, 2014

Persist to Resist

“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.” 1 Peter 5:8-9 (ESV)

The enemy is persistent in his pursuit of your loyalty. The devil is on a mission to neutralize your faith and to tranquillize your passion for God. Prowling around like a roaring lion, the devil seeks to distort your vision of God. If the enemy can rob you of your passion and your vision, then he has accomplished his mission. The devil cannot attack God, so he chooses to attack God’s family. As a child of God, you are on Satan’s radar.

Persist to resist. You do not have to succumb to the attacks of the devil. You do not have to yield to his temptation to doubt God’s Word. You do not have to surrender to the enemy’s agenda to thwart God’s will. Remember, you are a child of the King! Jesus purchased you with His own blood. You have received the imputed righteousness of Christ. The Holy Spirit lives in you and there is no vacancy for the devil. The enemy is not welcome in your mind. The devil has no place in the landscape of your life devoted to the Lord.

Stand firm in the faith. Remember the confidence you placed in the completed work of Jesus on the cross. Stand firm in the reality of your new identity in Christ. Allow the fruit of the Spirit, self-control, to be released in your life. Starve the flesh and feed the Spirit. Guard your heart. Put on the full armor of God. Be alert! Don’t drift into apathy. Don’t coast into complacency. Stand firm in the faith God has given you.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, October 31st, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Devil, Spiritual Warfare, Victory.
Interact No Comments
October 30th, 2014

Enjoy the Journey

“One day he got into a boat with his disciples, and he said to them, ‘Let us go across to the other side of the lake.’ So they set out.” Luke 8:22 (ESV)

God will get you to the other side. His plan for you is personal. God designed you with His purpose in mind. You are not an accident. Before you were born, God knew you (Jer. 1:5). You are here at this very moment because God ordained your existence. God has a special plan for your life that includes your past, present, and future. God’s plan factors in your choices. You are not an impersonal robotic creature. You are a personal relational being with the purpose of God in your heart. God knows you by name and even the hairs upon your head are numbered (Luke 12:7).

God’s plan for you is eternal. There’s more in store than what you see in the here and now. God has placed eternity in your heart to position you for eternal life (Eccl. 3:11). Your life goes beyond the grave. God’s plan for you extends beyond the immediate and includes eternal life. As you receive the gift of eternal life by faith, your forever is changed. Heaven becomes the place where you will live with God forever.

The disciples responded to Jesus by getting into a boat and setting out. Jesus said, “Let’s go over to the other side.” Jesus did not say, “Let’s see if we can make it to the other side.” When Jesus is in your boat, there’s nothing to fear. Jesus will get you to the destination safely and right on time. Enjoy the journey!

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, October 30th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Jesus, Trust, Victory.
Interact No Comments
September 27th, 2014

Full Surrender

“And Jesus answered them, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.’” John 12:23 (ESV)

Victory comes through surrender. Our culture teaches you to take control of your life. Be the best! Give it your all! Get all you can! Be happy! Win at all costs! Reality shows have glamorized the self-centered life. The persistent themes suggest that your best life is all about you and what you can acquire during your short stay on this planet.

Jesus demonstrated the opposite pursuit. Jesus left it all in Heaven so that He could come to earth, live and die a sinless death, be resurrected on the third day, and ascend back to His Father in Heaven. Jesus came not to be served, but to serve. Jesus oriented His life around the centrality of bringing glory to God.

  • “Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Heb. 12:2 (ESV)
  • “’Father, glorify your name.’ Then a voice came from heaven: ‘I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.’” John 12:28 (ESV)

Jesus willingly put others first. He willingly endured the agony of crucifixion and looked to the resulting outcome of saving mankind and bringing glory to God.

Your best life is not your life! Victory comes through surrender. Are you willing to follow the example of Christ and place God’s agenda first in your life? Are you willing to reflect honor to God? Live in such a way that those who know you, but don’t know God, will come to know God because they know you!

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, September 27th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Jesus, Surrender, Victory.
Interact No Comments
August 14th, 2014

Victory in Temptation

“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” 1 Corinthians10:13 (ESV)

Temptation is an opportunity to honor God. Our response to temptation will determine whether we honor God or dishonor God. As followers of Jesus Christ, we are not temptation exempt. Living in a fallen world and retaining our sin nature guarantee the presence of temptation. It is not a matter of if we will face temptation, but a matter of when we will face temptation. Even Jesus was tempted.

Temptation is a common feature in this life. Of course, temptation comes in different forms depending on where we are most susceptible. Satan knows what our weaknesses are and what will entice us toward sin.

We are not left alone to fend for ourselves. God is here! God is faithful! We can anchor our faith to the faithfulness of God. He will never leave us. He will not abandon us. In fact, God will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear with Him. Temptation is a constant reminder of our dependency upon God. We need God!

God will also provide an exit strategy. When temptation knocks at our door, we don’t have to submit to the temptation. God will always provide a way of escape so that we can stand up under the load and stress of the temptation.

How will you respond when temptation comes your way? Will you seize the opportunity to honor God?

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, August 14th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category God's Faithfulness, Temptation, Victory.
Interact No Comments
April 6th, 2014

Jesus and Surrender

“And Jesus answered them, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.’” John 12:23 (ESV)

Victory comes through surrender. Our culture teaches you to take control of your life. Be the best! Give it your all! Get all you can! Be happy! Win at all costs! Reality shows have glamorized the self-centered life. The persistent themes suggest that your best life is all about you and what you can acquire during your short stay on this planet.

Jesus demonstrated the opposite pursuit. Jesus left it all in Heaven so that He could come to earth, live and die a sinless death, be resurrected on the third day, and ascend back to His Father in Heaven. Jesus came not to be served, but to serve. Jesus oriented His life around the centrality of bringing glory to God.

  • “Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” Heb. 12:2 (ESV)
  • “‘Father, glorify your name.’ Then a voice came from heaven: ‘I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.’” John 12:28 (ESV)

Jesus willingly put others first. He willingly endured the agony of crucifixion and looked to the resulting outcome of saving mankind and bringing glory to God.

Your best life is not your life! Victory comes through surrender. Are you willing to follow the example of Christ and place God’s agenda first in your life? Are you willing to reflect honor to God? Live in such a way that those who know you, but don’t know God, will come to know God because they know you!

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, April 6th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Jesus, Surrender, Victory.
Interact No Comments