On November 11, 1918, representatives of France, Germany, and Great Britain met in a railroad station in France to sign an armistice agreement and end the fighting in “the war to end all wars.” They signed the agreement at 5:00 a.m. with the stipulation that the fighting would end six hours later – at 11:00 a.m..
I wonder why they didn’t stop fighting immediately. I suppose in those days, it took time for word to spread throughout the Western Front. At 5:00 a.m., everyone knew Germany had been defeated by the Allies and celebrations started around the world. But for the soldiers in the field, the war wasn’t over. There were thousands of casualties that day as the fighting continued.
We are living in a time similar to those six hours in 1918. When Jesus walked out of the grave, God declared victory over sin, evil, and death. Satan knows he’s been defeated, but he’s not ready to stop fighting. We’re caught in the crossfire—living in the tension between the “already” and the “not yet” of God’s victory.
We say, “Where, O death, is your sting?” but still weep at the graveside of those we love. We read that the power of sin over us has been broken, and yet we confess with the apostle Paul that we keep on sinning (Romans 7:15-8:2).
Jesus knew we would suffer as the battle continues to rage, and so He told His disciples:
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
We have peace because our hope isn’t in our own power to triumph. We trust in the One who has already conquered. Through our trials and our struggles, we can have confidence in this: God wins.
Take heart, friends. No matter what you face this week, Christ has overcome the world.
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