Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:35,37
On October 7, 1916, the Georgia Tech football team defeated Cumberland College by a score of 222 to 0. It is ranked as the most lopsided victory in college football history. Back in 1916, much like in today’s ranking system, the margin of victory mattered, so Coach John Heisman, after whom the Heisman Trophy is named, ran up the score. It was so lopsided a victory that the Cumberland football team didn’t even gain any positive yardage for the game. They actually lost 28 yards of offense during the game. Yet, there was one bright spot for the defense. The Cumberland college football team blocked one extra point attempt by Georgia Tech. There is an interesting side note on this, they used a human pyramid formation to block the extra point which is no longer legal in football. Georgia Tech’s victory was truly an overwhelming victory.
Overwhelming victories are now frowned upon in sports. Once a game is decisively out of reach, coaches usually either put in the 3rd string players or they tell their team to take a knee so that they do not run up the score and humiliate the opponent. But when it comes to our faith, overwhelming victories over hell and its lies are the way we are to play out our lives in Christ.
The 3-word phrase “more than conquerors” is really one word in Greek -Hupernikao. The nikao part of the word is Greek for “victory” that Paul adopts from Greek Mythology and the Goddess of Victory. The Apostle Paul adds a prefix and hyperbolizes it with the pre-fix “Huper,” where we get our word hyper – making it a rare compound word that means “hyper conquer,” “over-conquer” or “conquer with much success to spare.” Here the Apostle Pauls is saying no matter what distress, tribulation, persecution, famine, danger, or sword we face, we overwhelmingly win. And it’s more than just a win…it’s a Georgia Tech over Cumberland College win.
We don’t often think that being in Christ gives us this kind of daily victory, but the love of God in Christ Jesus allows us to face any and every kind of battle we might face, knowing that for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. In Christ, we win. In Christ, we are loved. In Christ, we are more than conquerors. That is an overwhelming victory. Praise the Lord, Thank you Lord!