The Beauty of the Rings: Digging Deeper Into Victory, Part 5

by | May 7, 2016 | Bible, Digging Deeper Into Victory, Holy Spirit, Victory

While in Queenstown, New Zealand, we had the opportunity to take a “safari”, which brought us to some of the popular scenic places that were used to portray “Middle-Earth” in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. We saw the original filming sites of the Misty Mountains, the refugees of Rohan, the Battle of the Wargs, the Pillars of the Kings, the Ford of Bruinen, Isengard, and the Forest of Lothorien, to name a few!

While thinking about all of this, I had to ask myself if New Zealand would be as popular as it is today, had the Lord of the Rings trilogy never been filmed there. Of course, New Zealand has always been a popular tourist spot, and this particular “Lord of the Rings” tour existed under a different name, and was popular prior to the filming of the trilogy. But when the trilogy was put into a film, when the world was able to “visualize” the beautiful countryside, and the spot attracted even more tourists.

In the same way, the Word of God has always been with us, but in order for us to truly experience it’s life-giving power, the Word of God needed to become flesh (See John 1:14). We needed to “visualize” the Word through Jesus!

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10 NIV) Jesus brought back the zoe life (zoe is the Greek word for life) that we lost in Eden, the Breath of Life from God Himself. However, even when we accept this life-giving force from Jesus, the one that renders our spirit alive again, our soul may still not be on the same page as our spirit. Our soul may still try to determine how we act! We need to consciously make the decision, on a daily basis, to follow real life. Any wavering in our determination will be fatal!

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” (2 Cor 4:16-17 NIV) If we had strongholds in our lives before our conversion, there may potentially still be some there afterwards. Our spirit was renewed, but our soul continues to drag its feet, constantly reminding us of our sinful nature, trying to render us ineffective. Naturally the evil one is taking advantage of this.

This is why it is so important to emphasize the importance of renewing our soul, or our “mind” as Paul refers to it. Only then can we truly be transformed through the power of God’s Spirit: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Rom 12:1-2 NIV)

Notice that the apostle Paul is addressing believers and encouraging them to “not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” This message is for ALL followers of Christ, and this message is woven throughout the New Testament: “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” (Eph 4:22-24 NIV)

“And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” (2 Cor 3:18 NIV)

For our minds (souls) to be transformed, the garbage that it contains (its false belief system) has to be replaced by Truth. This can only be done by constantly meditating upon God’s Word, the Bible, and by relying on God’s Holy Spirit. We have to get rid of the lies of the enemy and fill our mind with the loving Truth of the One who willingly died for us, so that we could experience real life.

“My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.” (James 1:19-21 NIV)

The Bible is not just any book. It is so powerful that it will transform us into the people we wish we could be: “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Heb 4:12 NIV)

“So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” (Isa 55:11 NIV)

“The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.” (Ps 119:130 NIV)

It is time we stop listening to our soul’s insinuations and instead, start meditating upon the real life offered to us through God’s Word. Let’s start meditating on His Word day and night, declaring its truth throughout the day, and replace these false beliefs that are hampering us from attaining full life.

“For you will put a knife to your throat if you are a man given to desire.” Proverbs 23:2 AMP (In the original Hebrew text it uses the word “nepesh”, which literally means soul. The text is really saying “For you will put a knife to your throat if you are a man given to soul.”)

“My son, pay attention to what I say; listen closely to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to a man’s whole body.” (Prov 4:20-22 NIV)

Confession is much more than confessing our sins, it’s also literally “to speak the same words” (from the Greek word “homologia”). Or in order words, we need to meditate upon what God says about us in His Word by repeating it over and over in our minds, by “muttering” it, by deliberating upon it. Yes, the Bible REALLY IS that important!

“Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.” (Heb 4:14-15 NASB)

“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering.” (Heb 10:23 NASB)

Many only quote Bible verses mechanically over and over again. I know about this because I have done it myself many times. And when we do anything mechanically, there usually aren’t any results: “You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is these that bear witness of Me; and you are unwilling to come to Me, that you may have life.” (John 5:39-40 NASB)

Why aren’t there any results?

Again, the Word has to become flesh to become effective, and this can only happen by relying on its author: God’s living Holy Spirit. Instead of desperately hanging on to our false belief systems, we need to allow the Holy Spirit to give us life by letting Him give us understanding, and by following His directions. Only then will our confession or “homologia” become effective.

Real life is only possible in the way that God set up for us. There is no other way! (See John 14:6)

There sure is beauty in the country where the Lord of the Rings was filmed!

Rob Chaffart

(To access the entire “Digging Deeper Into Victory” devotional series, please click here.)


The Beauty of the Rings: Digging Deeper Into Victory, Part 5