“…I die daily.” — 1 Corinthians 15:31
“I have been crucified with Christ…” — Galatians 2:20
Scientists in their research have found that nature possesses remarkable neutralizing powers. There are man-made poisons and acids that are so powerful they can dissolve the flesh clean off the bone or singe the hair follicles in the nose. Depending on the volume, these same chemicals, when poured into a running stream of water with a sandy bottom can be neutralized in their effects in as little as twenty feet.
In John 10, Jesus reveals that our true enemy is Satan and that his poisonous work involves stealing, killing and destroying everything he can in the lives of believers. All those who love Christ and have surrendered their lives to Him continually face the poisonous onslaught of the enemy. How can his work be neutralized?
Paul the Apostle, experienced the attack of the enemy on a regular basis. He experienced persecution, peril, distress, imprisonment, stoning, false accusations, etc. How did he overcome? What was the secret to his effectiveness in God’s work?
Paul’s response to the attack of the enemy was simple: “I die daily” (1 Corinthians 15:31). The enemy’s poison and strategy are neutralized by dying to self. Paul knew what we should know: What can Satan do to a dead man? His work is rendered ineffective by our death. But, how exactly do we die to self?
Paul showed us how death to self is possible in Galatians 2:20: “I am crucified with Christ…” Crucifixion and the cross are the Christian’s answer to the work of the enemy. This is the will of God for our lives.
Crucifixion is not something we can do to ourselves. As in Jesus crucifixion, it is a fate that we must surrender ourselves to. Surrender and death are the keys to overcoming the work of the enemy in our lives.
The big question then is: Will we surrender our lives to God? It is the only way to victory. The cross is our strength, our only hope!