Dearly loved friend, I was fully intending to write to you about our amazing salvation we all participate in, but felt the need instead to challenge you to vigorously defend and contend for the beliefs we cherish. -Jude 1:3a TPT
Spiritual warfare is not advancing to take but defending to keep that which is already ours. God impressed this truth upon my heart about a year ago when He showed me that every victory we will ever need in life is already ours because of the cross. Therefore, as we vigilantly defend that which we have been given, we get to experience the fullness of that victory.
The defensive side is standing firm during our struggles claiming the reality of victory over the illusion of defeat. However, there is also an offensive side to spiritual warfare. When we know our victory and are actively defending it, then we are empowered by the Spirit to “advance” with that victory and build His kingdom allowing others to claim their victory as well. We have been placed in the Lord’s army to not only stand our own ground, but also to claim ground for others. The “ground” for God’s people has already been taken when Christ went to the cross, but many have yet to realize that. We who hold our own ground have been given the wisdom and truth to tread upon the ground Christ won for others and to claim it on their behalf. They obviously have to be receptive when we declare God’s truth over them, but we can walk with them into new realms of victory.
The verse written above confirmed this lesson for me. Jude felt impressed to not just remind his readers of the victory they had but to also share what they needed to do with it. It needed to be “defended” and “contended for.” The side note on the phrase “contend for” said it means “to add to the contest.” If we are only focused on defending our victory, our objective becomes “to not lose.” But if we also offensively “contend for” our beliefs, we are adding to the contest or advancing in the battle going for the ultimate win. This brings the truth of our beliefs to others. We cannot lose when we defensively stand, but we experience a greater win when we offensively advance.
I am a mom of three young children, and they are beginning to discover the love of Jesus in very personal ways. However, they do not yet know the victory they can have in Christ. My three year old is struggling with fear of being alone and of the dark. It has been a blessing to teach him how to claim truth over the lies that have built up his fear. I remember this process very well as a kid myself, and I know now that my fears did not just subside as I grew older. They were destroyed when I finally believed the truth of my victory. These are very common childhood struggles, but the same tactic is true for every battle we face. We have the victory already. We stand armed and ready to defend that victory at all costs. And we march forward bringing others into the freedom we now know.
You each have a voice. You each have a victory to defend and a call to walk in a way that helps others to do the same. Your life becomes truly lovely when you embrace the victory God gave you and push that loveliness into the ugliness of the world that surrounds you. We were never meant to offensively fight for victory but to further it. How is God calling you to advance?
Your fellow Able Mom,
Lord, help us to know the victory you have given us and to receive it in full. May we defend it against the enemy, and advance it for the sake of others. Amen