Revelation 12:11 says we overcome the enemy by the word of our testimony and by the blood of Jesus Christ! In other words, there is victory over satan!

My prayer for you in 2023 is for you to be an overcomer! A new year is here and with it comes a renewed sense of hope and drive for many of us as we begin a fresh start on our goals. Last year may have had setbacks and challenges–and you may not have accomplished all you set out to do. This year can be different, but in order to accomplish the goals you have set, you must have the right spirit, mind, and attitude. 

Our text has been a great blessing in the past when Christians were severely persecuted-–as they were persecuted under the Roman emperors, as they were persecuted by the Roman Church during the Inquisition, as they were persecuted by Muslim terrorists through the centuries, and as they were persecuted in China by the Communists during the Cultural Revolution. And as they are being persecuted throughout the world today, in every time of persecution true Christians have been encouraged by the faith of these saints. And even today, in America, we as Christians are looked down on, found fault with, defamed, and persecuted. Christianity is the only religious group that it is correct to attack and defame in America. The news media does it all the time. So do college professors.

Found within Revelation 12:11 are three points to being an overcomer. First, living under the Blood of Jesus, in terms of forgiveness of your sins. Second, the word of your testimony, in terms of your confession of Jesus Christ as Lord. And third, you can overcome Satan, by loving Jesus more than life itself! If you desire to overcome every obstacle in 2023, Jesus must mean more to you than life itself. The reason is because we are trapped in flesh until we shed this flesh and take on our eternal bodies. But until then we will be affected by things that affect our flesh nature, thus John says in 1 John 2:16, “For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh, the desires of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not from the Father but from the world.

When the things in this world mean more to us than Jesus Christ, you will not be an overcomer but will be overcame. The examples could be small examples that we all deal with on a daily basis, things like: patience, self-control, forgiveness, etc. Or the examples could be major attacks on our life itself. 

Here are examples of that kind of faith from Christianophobia, A Faith Under Attack by Rupert Shortt. In North Korea, nine hundred pastors and 300,000 Christians have been killed. One woman in North Korea formed a small Bible study group of ten people. She was arrested. She said, “I went through six months of extreme torture. I was repeatedly beaten. My teeth were knocked out. My fingernails were pulled out [by the roots]. Raw chili was rubbed into my wounds. After that I was sentenced to four years in Kyo-Haw-So prison. Around thirty or forty people died there every day. We were so hungry we would take food from the mouths of dead people. I was once so weak I was given up for dead, and my body was put on a pile of corpses awaiting burial” (Shortt, ibid., pp. 221, 222). She went through all that for reading the Bible with a few friends! In North Korea Christians were hung on crosses and burned to death over fires, they were thrown off of bridges, and crushed under steamrollers. Even with all this horror it is estimated that two percent of North Koreans are underground (secret) Christians. About half a million are secret Christians in North Korea, even though they are in danger of being killed every single day (ibid., p. 220). In India between August and September 2008 Hindus murdered ninety Christian people and displaced fifty thousand Christians from their homes in the state of Orissa (ibid., p. 149). In China the Communist government continues to repress and persecute Christians (ibid., p. 204).

What is there about Jesus Christ that makes millions of people willing to die for Him? Why do they think the Blood of Jesus is the most important thing in the world? Why do they speak of Jesus dying to save them, even though such speech can cost them their lives? Why do they risk having their heads cut off for Him?

They love Jesus more than life itself because He died on the cross and shed His Blood to save them from sin. Jesus Christ and His Blood are the most important things you will ever hear about in your life. Why? Because only Jesus can pardon your sin by His Blood. And only Jesus can give you eternal life. I plead with you in the name of God, come to Jesus and trust Him! Let’s be overcomers IN 2023!

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