Nike, the brand that Michael Jordan built, is still flying high.
The famous shoe company announced the release of their new Flyknit Lunar3 this month. It’s lightweight. The colors are bright. But most of all wearing them will put you in the winner’s circle!
Nike is the most innovative shoe company of our time. And their slogan, Just Do It, captures our interest, captivates our imagination and creates a desire for kids to wear their brand.
But did you know that Nike is a Bible word? It’s found in one of the great verses of the Bible, I John 5:4.
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith.
In Greek mythology Nike was the goddess of victory, who presided over all military and athletic contests. The Greek word nike” (nee’kay) is the word for victory.
There are three important words in this verse that are necessary for a successful Christian life
(1) Born. This birth is a spiritual birth, not a physical one. Jesus said it occurs through water and the spirit. And this birth puts us into the Kingdom of God. The promise of this passage is to those born again. (John 3:3-5)
(2) Victory. Those born of God will face conflicts, controversies, and confrontations. We can either be conquered or we can be the conqueror. But because we are born of God and belong to God, we have the resources to be victorious in our various contests. Consider these three applications.
Victory over Temptation. The same writer warned about the lusts of the flesh, the lusts of the eyes and the pride of life (1 John 2:15). Many a Christian has fallen prey to these foes. But through our faith in the Faith we can achieve victory. Sometimes our surrender to temptation is excused with the refrain, “I am only human.” True. But through faith, God has given us super human resources to fight and find victory. God has promised a means of escape (1 Cor. 10:13). You can win the battle with temptation. Just do it!
Victory over the “thorns of the flesh.” Paul spoke of his struggle with the “thorn” in 2 Cor. 12:7-10. We’re not told the nature of his thorn, but it was hurting Paul. It was something Satan used to impede his progress, to hamper his effectiveness and frustrate his faithfulness. But Paul prayed. God didn’t remove the thorn. But through God’s grace and Paul’’s faith, he found the strength to subdue the troubling thorn.
Through grace and faith, we too, can be victorious over the thorns of sickness, pain, personal problems and vexing circumstances. You can win the battle with the “thorns of the flesh.” Just do it!
Victory over discouragement. Discouragement can sap the strength out of us. It can deplete our energies, exhaust us physically, drain us mentally and weaken us spiritually. Discouragement is a device of the Devil. It undermines the love in our homes, cripples the work of the church and enfeebles our faithfulness.
(3) Faith. Through faith in The Faith, we can muster the courage to overcome. It is through hearing God’s Word that we receive faith (Rom. 10:17). Though spiritual exercise our faith develops. Grows. Gets stronger. And becomes resilient.
Through our faith, we can see a brighter tomorrow and know that one day all of our troubles and trials will pale into insignificance when we see Jesus. You can muster the courage to win the battle over temptation, life’s thorns and discouragement.
Will you be vanquished or victorious? The conquered or the conqueror? The choice is yours. The next time you put on your Nike shoes, remember that nike means victory. Know that as a Christian you can experience the victory of faith.
With God’s help, you can just do it!
—Ken Weliever, The Preacherman