Jordan Ministries
Embracing God's Promise of Abundance When Hardship Endures
Good Wins
by Jenny on February 18th, 2018

"Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." Romans 12:21

I do not watch the news. That's quite the confession, isn't it? Maybe it seems a bit childish of me, foolish even, as though by refraining from watching evil unfold I can pretend it doesn't exist. But evil does exist. Of that I am fully aware. I do not need to watch the news on television to hear the cries and sufferings of others--both domestic and abroad. Evil exists and is prevalent in our world. Evil threatens to overcome. Evil seems to make advances. Evil may win many battles. But take heart. Because it did not, does not, will not win the war.

Lying awake last night, pondering news of the world's events that somehow manage to creep into my awareness in spite of not watching the stories live, I felt overcome by sadness and despair. When evil approaches from every side, what can we do? Romans 12:21 explains the strategy for believers: "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." When evil closes in, we keep doing what God commanded us to do, and what He promises to give us the power to do: Love Him. Love others.

How can we love Him when He, as a sovereign God, allows evil to advance?

We must know Him.

In his book, Spectacular Sins and Their Global Purpose in the Glory of Christ (Wheaton: Crossway 2008, pp13-14), author and pastor John Piper writes, "What we need is to know the great things about God. Knowing great things about God will help make us ready not to collapse under cataclysmic conflict and personal catastrophe."

God promised that we would have many trials and sorrows here on earth. But He also tells us that He has overcome the world. (John 16:33)

First John 3:8 says that Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil.

Hebrews 2:14 explains that the power of the devil was broken--destroyed--when Jesus died on the cross and was resurrected, brought back to life, three days later by the Father.

I do not know why evil continues to prevail on earth but I do know that we are told repeatedly in Scripture to endure suffering (Romans 5:3-5, 2 Timothy 4:5, James 1:2). Hebrews 12:2 tells us that Jesus endured suffering by focusing on the joy set before Him, a joy that had been promised to Him, established for Him before the beginning of the world, but a joy that was still yet to come.

We have a similar promise in Romans 8:28 and 11:36. God works all things for the good of those who love Him, and all things are intended for His glory. Scripture does not say that all things are good or all things bring God glory. It says that God is at work to accomplish all these things. And make no mistake, God is not at work simply cleaning up havoc wreaked by the enemy. Evil entered the world at the fall of man and has been prevalent ever since. But to share another quote from John Piper's book, "God did not just overcome evil at the cross. He made evil serve the overcoming of evil." (p12) "What man intends for evil, God will use for good" . . . our good, and the good of others. (Genesis 50:20)

Hope lives, and it lives, not in religion, but in the Person of Jesus Christ. Do you know Him?

How can we love others when they steal, kill and destroy?

We love others by doing good.

First John 3:18 reads, "Let's not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions." In this passage, the apostle John appears to be speaking of loving our brothers and sisters in Christ. However, the Bible clearly teaches us to love our friends and our enemies too.

In Matthew 5:44 Jesus says, "Love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!"

Paul tells us in Romans 12:20, "If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads."

When bad news strikes, do not be overcome. Instead remember that God is good . . . and Good wins.

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Crossing Your Jordan

I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling, Bible-teaching mom of six, and wife to my college sweetheart. I believe everyone can live a life of abundance through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and radical obedience to His Word.

Do you have a relationship with God through Christ? If not, I would consider it pure joy to tell you about God, why you need Him, and how to be reconciled to Him through Christ.

If you know Christ as your Savior, do you know how to follow Him as Lord? If, like me, life's challenges have caused you to question whether you truly want to follow God's plan for you, or you simply don't know how to recognize God's ways due to a lack of biblical literacy, I would love to teach you what I've come to know about God through His Word.

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