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Lent Is The Signal For Victory

There’s a story about Christians in a cell awaiting their doom — to be fed to hungry lions. With only minutes left to live, they sing joyful hymns! A Roman guard pokes his head into the cell and asks: “What’s the matter–don’t you have a sense of the situation?”

These Christians were convinced of Jesus’ victory. Yes, they had a sense of the situation.

God knows all Christians need that victory. In a world full of losers. Losers who think they are winners. Many young people lose their virginity and think they have won something. People loses lots of money gambling, and oddly enough become more convinced than ever of greater chances of winning! People lose their health to drugs, yet keep on doing drugs. People lose themselves in sleaze and corruption, and think it be to be gain in honor and prestige. People take courses on self-assertion and self-promotion and lose their modesty and self- respect. People run with worldly crowds, and lose heavenly gifts and favors.

People think they are winning, yet like all sinners can’t help but operate at a loss. Pretending to win, they do not even know what victory is, or even where the battle is.

Christ The Loser/Victor

Christ knows both. He is the authority on victory, and battles.

But note how He uses His authority–to serve.

To serve the distressed, the helpless, the hopeless, and the losers. He even looks like one of them! Not handsome in a worldly sense, He is non-assertive, quiet, obedient, faithful, not exploiting fame from His deeds. He often pulls back from His destroyers, is contradicted and rejected, finally caught and killed. A loser!

He knew how to wait it out, to want for victory in good time. Atonement time. And it came! The downward path of humiliation and betrayal, interrogation, torture, cross and death, is His finest service–victory service.

And on the third day the Father proves and approves it. Jesus descends into hell, rises from the tomb, ascends on high, rules in power, and is certainly coming again in ultimate, shining victory. Victory for us. For you. And it’s all a gift.


We have struggles and challenges in order to exercise this victory. That is why Jesus gives His victory-believers a mission.

His disciples needed it. He tells them to let the net down again, in Luke 5. The net strains to breaking point, loaded. Then the author of victory ties two things together — fearlessness and winning: “Don’t be afraid — from now on you will be catching men!”

That’s the victory road for us: winning people for Christ and heaven. Out of a world of losers.

So we go. The one with all authority in heaven and earth says so. The bait is already cut.

— Pastor Warren Fanning