Words: Eugene Monroe Bartlett Sr. (b. Dec. 24, 1885; d. Jan. 25, 1941)
Music: Eugene Monroe Bartlett Sr.
Note: Mr. Bartlett wrote Victory in Jesus in 1939. His son, Eugene Monroe Bartlett Jr. (1918-1988), was also a gospel song writer.
Nike is a major manufacturer of sports equipment. You can see their name or prominently displayed symbol at virtually any athletic event. As of 2008, the company employed more than 30,000 people, and had revenues in excess of $18.6 billion per year. So what does a sporting giant have to do with the Bible? Just this. The Greek word nike (pronounced NEE-kay in Greek) is the Bible word for victory. In its various forms, it’s used many times in the New Testament.
As Mr. Bartlett’s song says, our spiritual victory is won “in Jesus,” and through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. There are aspects of that victory that are experienced the moment we put our faith in Christ. There are other aspects of our victory that are won day by day, as we walk in faith and obedience, and still others that await our translation to heaven. Here are some passages that speak of that victory.
Jesus says, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome [have victory over] the world” (Jn 16:33). Christ is the great Overcomer, the supreme Victor, on whom our own victory is based. “You are of God, little children, and have overcome [have victory over] them, because He who is in you [the indwelling Holy Spirit] is greater than he who is in the world [Satan, cf. I Pet. 5:8]” (I Jn. 4:4).
“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith” (I Jn. 5:4). That is, our faith in Christ is the means by which our victory is sealed and certain. This text was the basis for another gospel song, Faith Is the Victory, by John Yates. Notice, it’s through the new birth, being “born of God” (cf. Jn. 1:12-13) that we become overcomers. In that sense, all Christians are guaranteed ultimate victory, and the promises made in Revelation chapters 1 and 2 are for all believers, not just a superior few (Rev. 2:7; cf. 2:11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21).
Referring to persecution and other hardships many face in service for Christ the Word of God says, “In all these things we are more than conquerors [supreme victors] through Him who loved us” (Rom. 8:37). To be more than victorious means not only to win the battle, but to claim the spoils of victory, territory or people previously held by the enemy. That’s exactly what the servants of Christ do. Those won to Christ through their service are rescued from Satan’s domain, and translated into the kingdom of God (Acts 26:17-18; Col. 1:13).
“These [the coming Antichrist and his followers] will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome [have victory over] them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful” (Rev. 17:14).
“When this corruptible [body] has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?’ The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labour is not in vain in the Lord (I Cor. 15:54-58).
1) I heard an old, old story, how a Saviour came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary to save a wretch like me;
I heard about His groaning, of His precious blood atoning,
Then I repented of my sins and won the victory.
O victory in Jesus, my Saviour forever!
He sought me and bought me with His redeeming blood;
He loved me ere I knew Him, and all my love is due Him–
He plunged me to victory beneath the cleansing flood.
1) What aspects of the Christian’s spiritual victory are to be our present experience, and which ones are yet to come?
2) What would you say to a believer who is struggling and who says he doesn’t feel very victorious?