Lesson 13 | Sabbath, 29 September 2018
“The great Captain of our salvation has conquered in our behalf, that through Him we might conquer, if we would, in our own behalf. But Christ saves none against their choice; He compels none to obedience. He made the infinite sacrifice that they might overcome in His name and His righteousness be imputed unto them.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 3, p. 457.
1. To be victorious, what is indispensable for the Christian soldier who is clothed with the armor of God?
Ephesians 6:18. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.
Philippians 4:6, 7. 6Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
1 John 5:4, 5. 4For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. 5Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
“It is only by watching unto prayer, and the exercise of living faith, that the Christian can preserve his integrity in the midst of the temptations that Satan brings to bear upon him. But ‘whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.’ 1 John 5:4. Talk to your heart constantly the language of faith: ‘Jesus said He would receive me, and I believe His word. I will praise Him; I will glorify His name.’ Satan will be close by your side to suggest that you do not feel any joy. Answer him, ‘This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.’ I have everything to be glad of; for I am a child of God. I am trusting in Jesus. The law of God is in my heart; none of my steps shall slide.” –Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 360.
2. Through whom will the promised victory be gained? What wonderful vision did the Lord’s messenger see?
1 Corinthians 15:57. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Psalms 118:15; 108:13. 15The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tabernacles of the righteous: the right hand of the Lord doeth valiantly…. 13Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.
“In vision I saw two armies in terrible conflict. One army was led by banners bearing the world’s insignia; the other was led by the bloodstained banner of Prince Immanuel. Standard after standard was left to trail in the dust, as company after company from the Lord’s army joined the foe and tribe after tribe from the ranks of the enemy united with the commandment-keeping people of God. An angel flying in the midst of heaven put the standard of Immanuel into many hands, while a mighty general cried out with a loud voice: ‘Come into line. Let those who are loyal to the commandments of God and the testimony of Christ now take their position. Come out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean, and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters. Let all who will come up to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty.’…
“The Captain of our salvation was ordering the battle and sending support to His soldiers. His power was mightily displayed, encouraging them to press the battle to the gates. He taught them terrible things in righteousness as He led them on step by step, conquering and to conquer.” –(Testimony Treasures, vol. 3, p. 224) Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8, p. 41.
Promises for the overcomers
3. What merits will the Christian soldier plead–his own or Christ’s righteousness?
Revelation 12:11. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
Ephesians 2:4-9. 4But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: 7That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. 8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9Not of works, lest any man should boast.
“He who is trying to reach heaven by his own works in keeping the law, is attempting an impossibility. Man cannot be saved without obedience, but his works should not be of himself; Christ should work in him to will and to do of His good pleasure…. All that man can do without Christ is polluted with selfishness and sin; but that which is wrought through faith is acceptable to God. When we seek to gain heaven through the merits of Christ, the soul makes progress. Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, we may go on from strength to strength, from victory to victory; for through Christ the grace of God has worked out our complete salvation.” –God’s Amazing Grace, p. 177.
“We should realize in our inmost soul that all our efforts in and of ourselves will be utterly worthless; for it is only in the name and strength of the Conqueror that we shall be overcomers.” –Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 369.
4. With what will the overcomers be clothed? What wonderful promise does Jesus give them?
Revelation 3:5. He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
Matthew 10:32.Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
“The overcomer is to be clothed in the white raiment of Christ’s righteousness, and of Him it is written: ‘I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before My Father, and before His angels.’ Oh, what a privilege it is to be an overcomer, and to have our names presented before the Father by the Saviour Himself! And when, as overcomers, we shall be ‘clothed in white raiment,’ the Lord will acknowledge our faithfulness as verily as in the days of the early Christian church. He acknowledged the ‘few names even in Sardis’ who had ‘not defiled their garments’ (Revelation 3:4); and we shall walk with Him in white, for through His atoning sacrifice we shall be accounted worthy.” –Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 364.
5. Where will the overcomers be seated? What emblems of victory and royal insignia does Jesus offer them?
Revelation 3:21, 12; 15:2; 7:9. 21To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne…. 12Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. 2And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God…. 9After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands.
“Before entering the City of God, the Saviour bestows upon His followers the emblems of victory and invests them with the insignia of their royal state. The glittering ranks are drawn up in the form of a hollow square about their King, whose form rises in majesty high above saint and angel, whose countenance beams upon them full of benignant love. Throughout the unnumbered host of the redeemed every glance is fixed upon Him, every eye beholds His glory whose ‘visage was so marred more than any man, and His form more than the sons of men.’ Upon the heads of the overcomers, Jesus with His own right hand places the crown of glory. For each there is a crown, bearing his own ‘new name’ (Revelation 2:17), and the inscription, ‘Holiness to the Lord.’ In every hand are placed the victor’s palm and the shining harp. Then, as the commanding angels strike the note, every hand sweeps the harp strings with skillful touch, awaking sweet music in rich, melodious strains. Rapture unutterable thrills every heart, and each voice is raised in grateful praise: ‘Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever.’ Revelation 1:5, 6.” –The Great Controversy, pp. 645, 646.
6. When the great tribulation has ended, what welcome will the risen dead in Christ and the living saints receive in the heavenly courts?
Matthew 25:34. Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
“In that day the redeemed will shine forth in the glory of the Father and the Son. The angels, touching their golden harps, will welcome the King and His trophies of victory…. A song of triumph will peal forth, filling all heaven. Christ has conquered. He enters the heavenly courts, accompanied by His redeemed ones, the witnesses that His mission of suffering and sacrifice has not been in vain….
“We may have a vision of the future, the blessedness of heaven. In the Bible are revealed visions of the future glory, scenes pictured by the hand of God, and these are dear to His church. By faith we may stand on the threshold of the eternal city, and hear the gracious welcome given to those who in this life cooperate with Christ, regarding it as an honor to suffer for His sake. As the words are spoken, ‘Come ye blessed of My Father,’ they cast their crowns at the feet of the Redeemer, exclaiming. ‘Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing…. Honour, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.’ Matthew 25:34; Revelation 5:12, 13.” –God’s Amazing Grace, pp. 355, 349.
The song of victory
7. What triumphant vision does the prophet of Patmos describe?
Revelation 15:2, 3. 2And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God. 3And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.
“What sustained the Son of God during His life of toil and sacrifice? He saw the results of the travail of His soul and was satisfied. Looking into eternity, He beheld the happiness of those who through His humiliation had received pardon and everlasting life. His ear caught the shout of the redeemed. He heard the ransomed ones singing the song of Moses and the Lamb.” –God’s Amazing Grace, p. 349.
“What a song that will be when the ransomed of the Lord meet at the gate of the Holy City, which is thrown back on its glittering hinges and the nations that have kept His word–His commandments–enter into the city, the crown of the overcomer is placed upon their heads, and the golden harps are placed in their hands! All heaven is filled with rich music, and with songs of praise to the Lamb. Saved, everlastingly saved, in the kingdom of glory! To have a life that measures with the life of God–that is the reward.” –Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, p. 982.
For additional study
“We are homeward bound. He who loved us so much as to die for us hath builded for us a city. The New Jerusalem is our place of rest. There will be no sadness in the City of God. No wail of sorrow, no dirge of crushed hopes and buried affections, will evermore be heard. Soon the garments of heaviness will be changed for the wedding garment. Soon we shall witness the coronation of our King. Those whose lives have been hidden with Christ, those who on this earth have fought the good fight of faith, will shine forth with the Redeemer’s glory in the kingdom of God.” –The Adventist Home, pp. 542, 543.
“Let us thank God with heart and soul and voice; and let us learn to approach unto Him as through an open door, believing that we may come freely with our petitions, and that He will hear and answer. It is by a living faith in His power to help, that we shall receive strength to fight the battles of the Lord with the confident assurance of victory.” –Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 364.