Links Daily Devotional

Born of God, Part 4: Overcoming the World

For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. (1 John 5:4-5, NIV)

With Jack Nicklaus already in the clubhouse, Tom Watson approached the seventeenth green at Pebble Beach in the 1982 U.S. Open tied with the Golden Bear. Having hit his shot over the green, Watson was coming out of thick rough onto a downhill lie. His caddie Bruce Edwards was encouraging him to just get the ball close, but Watson came back with a confident reply: “Close, hell. I’m going to sink it.” The result was one of the most memorable shots in golf history. Watson chipped it in, ran around the green, and pointed back to his caddie appearing to say, “I told you so!”

I cannot relate to a shot of that caliber in that big of a situation, but I can think back of times where I felt so confident that I was going to prevail and did. Sport psychologists often talk about how it’s not nerves that cause us to fail in sports, but it is our fear—and nothing overcomes fear better than confidence.

Imagine stepping into your next golf match or tournament and knowing that victory was already yours! I’m not so sure that I have the confidence to declare that for all of you on the golf course next time you play, but according Scripture victory has already been won over the world as it pertains to sin and death. The apostle John wrote that everyone who has put their faith in Jesus is born of God; they have and will overcome the world.

This is a lesson I do not need a sport psychologist to explain. This one is simple. Yet it is so difficult for many of us to accept and live by.

For some reason, many of us continue to live as if the world and sin still have power over us.  We remain fearful that God’s perfect will does not include us and our best interest. We doubt that God is sovereign over all and in control when things of the world feel too burdensome and heavy. But allow me to remind you as the John did in the fifth chapter of 1 John: victory has already been declared on your behalf. That means you have already won the battle against sin and death!

Because of life through Jesus, God wants us to live victoriously as his children, unashamed to walk in the light, closely with him, without condemnation or fear of judgment. In life, just as in sports, without fear we perform our best!

Josh Nelson

January 10, 2013

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The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at www.linksplayers.com.