1 John 4:4
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
Many kinds of power wrestle for dominance in this world. Physical strength, exerted by an individual or through the military might of a nation, often seems to reign supreme. Wealth can also throw its weight around. Political capital, wielded through legislation or executive action, can hold sway over millions of lives. The media and celebrities exercise a certain degree of power over what people think and how we access information. When you side with the powerful, it can feel satisfying to get your way or to see those who oppose you falter in the face of a greater power. When that power turns against you, however, watch out. The truth is, there will always be someone or something more powerful, and if we put our confidence in the powers of this world, we will ultimately become subject to those sources of power, whether they be strength or wealth or popular opinion. Satan loves to give people the illusion of power so they don’t realize they have actually fallen under his.
This verse reminds us about the power of Jesus and his Spirit living within us. Jesus’ Spirit doesn’t give us physical strength or promise us grand influence over society. The Spirit doesn’t exert power like the world. Instead, the Holy Spirit works in and through us to build the Kingdom of God and to exalt the name of Jesus. The Spirit gives us power to share God’s love and to tell the Savior’s story. Don’t be deceived by the false promises of worldly power; Jesus is greater than Satan and anything else he may stir up against us. John understood that behind the conflicts, hardships and struggles of this world there is a spiritual battle raging that Jesus will, without any doubt, win.
Therefore, we should take heart and stand strong in the face of turmoil and trouble. Yes, we will endure sorrows and difficulties. We will feel weak in the face of worldly might. Others may appear stronger, richer and more esteemed by the culture around us. Even the church and those who seek to honor God may fall victim to the world’s perishable power. So, we take heart, remembering to whom we belong and who dwells within us. God’s own Spirit, the active presence of the Almighty, moves in and through each follower of Jesus, sustaining our faith, guiding us in truth, protecting us from Satan’s schemes, and giving us courage to share Jesus’ love and message with others. That is true power, and we can know for sure that nothing in this world will ever overcome it.
Almighty God, You are glorious and powerful above everything in this world. Thank You for sending Your Spirit to live in my heart and for the assurance that nothing can separate me from Your love. Teach me to trust in Your strength and to listen to Your wisdom. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Pastor Mike Mirakian