Victory - The Example of Christ
People of God,
As we join the rest of the Christian world to celebrate our Lord’s resurrection, we do so in the awareness that it is a celebration of obedience over rebellion and the spirit of disobedience. It is a celebration of the triumph of God’s will over man’s selfish, egoistic and often myopic agenda. Easter is the celebration of good over evil, life over death, love of God over sin. Easter celebrates the concern of Christ for others.
We should also be aware that this victory did not come easily. It was a fierce Spiritual battle as demonstrated vividly in the garden of Gethsemane where Jesus prayed till his sweat was as blood (Luke 22:44), consider the mock trial, the unjust beatings and the negative attitude of the mob against him. In all these, Christ was not a helpless victim.
His concern was to be obedient to his father and to carry out the father’s will for him and the world. He had several options to save himself and avoid the cross but he did not take these. Instead he rebuked Peter who drawing a sword cut off someone’s ear. Christ reminded all who cared to listen of his power to call down legions of angels if he needed troops to fight on his behalf. (Matthew 26:53)
He who walked on the sea of Galilee, raised the dead, healed the sick, opened the eyes of the blind certainly had power to defeat those who came to arrest him, but he chose not to do so.
He had come to give his life a ransom for many (Mark 10.45) and nothing would deter him from accomplishing the goal. And so, he was crucified and died. By his death;
Surely he has borne our grief’s and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53: 4-5)
Clearly God was pleased with what Christ has done and did not abandon him to sheol but raised him up on the third day.
He had conquered and become victorious without lifting a finger In other words, he stooped to conquer.
In allowing God’s will to prevail, he showed the way man must follow, that it is not by power or by might but by the Spirit of the Living God.
By contrast men seek victory through sheer brutal, violent and destructive force, coercion, manipulation, and the employment of every known and unimaginable dubious tactics.
Elections are a few days away. It is being rumored that politicians are poised to rig and manipulate figures at the polls. We urge them in the name of God to do no such thing.
Victory from God is the only victory worth celebrating. Any victory from human manipulation will not endure. As the adage says; the house built with saliva will be knocked down by the morning dew.
As we gather in our various churches, as we celebrate Easter with our families and friends, as we go to the polls in the coming days, let us walk in the way of Christ who was victorious only by allowing God’s will to triumph. Let us remain in obedience to God knowing fully well that by so doing, victory that comes only from God will be ours.
Wishing you God’s blessings this Easter season and afterwards.
The Most Revd Peter J. Akinola,
Item from: The Church of Nigeria