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Spiritual Warfare

1 John 5:4 (NASB)

For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; 
and this is the victory that has 
overcome the world—our faith.

Bible Commentary

1 John 5:4 is a Bible verse in the New Testament written by the apostle John, which teaches us how to overcome the world--the struggles of life.

Many times, we see our problem as the other person—someone we’re having trouble getting along with, working with or living with. A boss is belittling an employee, a teacher failed a student because they didn’t like them or a parent left home because the marriage failed.

These are only the things we see on the surface, but there is something more going on in the spiritual world that we don’t see.


Ephesians 6:12 says, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

There are evil forces in the spiritual realm with great power to deceive us into thinking our conflict is with other people, but in fact, our problem or conflict is with the spiritual forces of darkness, like this verse says.

The source of conflict between people (that we see on the surface) is not what it appears. It is deception—lies—from the evil one. The devil is very good at using painful experiences from our past and exploiting them.


For example, he knows how to use someone’s weak self-esteem and make it even weaker by a teacher or boss whose weakness is arrogance and pride.

The weaknesses in each of us are nothing more than a lie—behavior we have developed because of the lies we have heard from the enemy’s camp, accepted and carry around like a heavy weight.

Living in a fallen world, we have the nature of fallen man. But Jesus Christ came to make the way for us to overcome the world--the lies of the devil. Even if we are saved and walk with Christ, we must overcome the sinful desires of the flesh, which are heavily influenced by what we believe and accept as truth.

Unlocking the Truth - Overcome the World

In John 8:44 Jesus says, “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”

We are all susceptible to the lies of the devil, particularly if we don’t read the Bible and carry it with us in our hearts.


We overcome the world and have victory through our faith, which is what 1 John 5:4 says. We must believe the truth, despite of the evidence we see in our conflicts with people.
It has been said that “hurting people hurt people.” Our human weaknesses are stirred up and used by the spiritual forces in dark places to hurt other people. That’s what the devil does, and when he is successful he maintains power over us.

If you look up the word “overcome” in the dictionary, you’ll see the definition: to gain the superiority, win.


Jesus has given us the tool to WIN over the world, to conquer the devil and those spiritual forces of darkness. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6).

When we walk closely with Him and abide in His Word, the Bible, we absorb truth, so that we can recognize a lie when we see, hear or feel one. Our faith is a shield that protects us against the fiery darts of the wicked one (Ephesians 6:16).

This is faith—recognizing a lie and standing firm in the truth. Even though we see and feel evidence to support the lie, we cling tightly to the truth—Jesus Christ. Being born of God—walking closely with Christ and taking in the Word of God every day—is a certain way to defeat our sin nature, wrong desires.

We can overcome every struggle in life by believing the truth and rejecting the lies. Jesus came so that we could have abundant life! Study the Bible verse of 1 John 5:4, seek the truth in Christ and overcome the world by faith.



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