Wednesday, April 14, 2010
You all know the movie. It was one of my favorites when I was in high school. Okay, fine. It was my VERY favorite. Underdog, washed up, uneducated, boxer turns hero.
I got so excited during the final boxing match in the first Rocky movie that I lost a contact and had to sit still, waiting for the theater lights to turn back on to find it. Bummer. Trust me.
Anyway, Rocky overcame his obstacles to victory. It took a second movie to win the title from Apollo Creed, who became his very best friend, before he was beat to death by Ivan Drago in Rocky IV. I could go on and on. Really.
But here's my point, Rocky was an overcomer. He faced his obstacles and defeated them. It's an inspiring tale that burns in the hearts of Americans, because we are also considered overcomers.
Rocky's story pales in comparison to our story, however. Fist-shaking, hell-bound, rebellious, dead man brought back to life. Putrid, stinking corpse made heir of all things. Enslaved, shackled, in bondage wretch turns into free child of the Master. But here's the problem. We didn't accomplish these things using mere brute force like Rocky did. We didn't have a Mickey verbally whipping us into shape and an Adrian covering her eyes in the wings. We did not write this story. Overcoming is not our doing.
He did everything. He is the Overcomer. And when Jesus took on our identity on the cross, bearing the wrath of His Father for our sins, and gave us His identity, we became overcomers as well. We were no longer guilty but innocent. No longer stained but made clean. God looks at us and sees the righteousness of His Son applied to our persons. Went from dead to Overcomers.
The greek word for Overcomer is nikao, or nike. In the verses under my blog title, the greek word "nikao" is used three times and it is used as a description of believers. If we believe that Jesus is the Son of God, it changes our lives from loser to Overcomer. This is not a suggestion or an encouragement like, "You can do it, little believer. You can overcome. You really can..." No, it is a descriptive word for believers. Whatever is born of God overcomes. If you are His child, you overcome. Period.
Now granted, there are plenty of instructions for believers to press on and overcome - in the seven letters to the churches of Revelation, especially, you see the call to overcome, to march forward, to be victorious. These passages are definitely a call to action, a call to effort and instructional. But I do not believe that anyone shows up at the pearly gates in heaven and God says, "Welcome home, child. You almost overcame. Nice try, but come on in anyway." No, the fact that we are His children means that we are already victorious. Sin has no hold on us, we are free from the bondage of rebellion and we will defeat death - all through the power of God. We hold the title of Overcomer because of Jesus. And if we are truly Overcomers, then we need to live like Overcomers. Yes?
If you read The Appearing, nike (or nee-kay) was the victory chant of the faithful believers. Though the great tribulation weighed heavy on them, they knew they would overcome. This word meant a lot to my father, as he formed a company with salesmen who had been fired from their previous jobs. They wanted to overcome the odds and be victorious in the investment banking industry, so Dad named their firm "Nike Securities." That name lasted for about 10 years before that other Nike company got us to change it, but to this day that company thrives because the partners understood the call to Overcome. Even the Nike shoe company uses that name to encourage athletes to be victorious.
So why is my blog titled "Nike Musings?" Because I am an Overcomer. I am a child of God. He has given me this title and this call and if you are a believer in Christ, you also are an Overcomer. As for the musings, the dictionary says that "musings" means "an instance or period of reflection." In other words, this blog is going to be the thoughts of an Overcomer.
And now you know.