An interesting word study in the NT focused on the word ‘victory’, leads us to scriptures and concepts that illuminate what the English language hides from us. Let’s call it ‘walking with Jesus’. Take a read.
Nike – The victory, conquest, in a past sense.
- A Nike exists after someone practices Nikao. It is a victory, not the person. A past win is a Nike.
- A conqueror is a Nikos whereas the Nike is the description of what or who was conquered.
- A Nike is a past victory over a challenge from an opponent.
- The greatest Nike’s are usually over our flesh or weak thinking.
- Right and Lovely thinking is accomplished by believing God loves us in spite of condemnation from fellow believers, the devil, or the world. When we can think this way, we have Nike over past experiences that used to cause us mental disturbance.
Nikao – The process of overcoming evil with Christian good.
- Only faith in the word of God and Jesus Christ can enable us to walk victoriously in a Nikao sense.
- Nikao also overcomes sin, death, and the grave by faith in the name of Jesus.
- Nikao faith conquers by believing that Jesus is the ‘Son of God’, the manifestation of the one God fully in human form.
- Nikao is the mentality of Divine victory.
- Overcoming Nikao faith is demonstrated by works, not just words. These good works are not ‘works of the OT law’ (legalism), but ‘works of faith’ (obedience to the written or spoken word with a God pleasing respect-motive).
- Works of faith lead to love and love casts out fear. Fear is the power of the world system, the primary tool of the god of this world, satan. His secondary tool is condemnation.
Nikos – The shortened personal name for Nikolaos (Nicholas).
- One who is regarded as a conqueror, a victor.
- In context, it can also mean ‘one who conquers people’.
- Today, some would verbalize it as ‘Nick’, a common male name.
- Nikos in an OT sense (netsach, נצח) can also mean ‘the goal’ or ‘the Divine objective’, ‘a distant point in the future’. The Nikos goal of God is to reveal the perfected image of Jesus’ nature within every believer, a process of maturity.
Nikolaos – Same definition as Nikos above.
- In two scriptures in Revelation (Nicolaitans, Revelation 2:6, 15), this personal name is modified to refer to a heretical teaching of a specific group of Christians which Jesus hated (hatred of the teaching, not the people). When used in this context, it simply means conquering and dominating (Lording over) other Christian believers.
With these definitions in hand, the scriptures now can speak loudly about overcoming faith, especially over the trials that God deems precious in perfecting His image within us. This image is revealed by victory and conquest over:
- character flaws,
- self-centered undetectable rationalizing motives,
- the arraignment of the OT Law,
- the 1st and 2nd deaths (grave & hell), and
- wrong thinking
This is the ‘distant goal’ of God’s plan for every Christian. Here are the scriptures.
NIKOS over Death. NIKOS over the Grave. NIKOS, the conquering name of JESUS.
1 Corinthians 15:54-57 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory [Nikos, the conquering name] . (55) O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory [Nikos, conquering name]? (56) The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. (57) But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory
[Nikos] through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Colossians 3:17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
Matthew 12:18-21 Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles. (19) He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear his voice in the streets. (20) A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory [Nikos]. (21) And in his name shall the Gentiles trust
Conclusion: JESUS is the NIKOS name of victory over death, sin, and the grave. This name, through faith in the name, is the distant resurrecting point of ‘netsach’.
NIKAO victory over the enemy through UNITY with the body.
Luke 11:21-23 When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are safe; (22) but when one stronger than he attacks him and overcomes
[NIKAO] him, he takes away his armor in which he trusted and divides his spoil. (23) Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather [assembles] with me scatters [wastes].
Conclusion: Victory over the strong opponent and securing his goods, is the soul-saving-revival that comes by being unified with the Church body of Christ. Tearing the Church down, avoiding Church relationships, failing to forgive and reconcile, or forsaking the assembly of believers weakens the body of Christ. As scripture declares, division makes the Church impotent and the house cannot stand.
Last supper principles insist on “love that does not wax cold” in the end times. If we aren’t part of the body of Christ, we are scattering (wasting victories) and we are actually against Jesus. Unity in the body starts with an attitude that ‘tolerates and loves’ versus ‘demands equal treatment’ (a legal mindset of the flesh that arises from tenets of the secular world).
Note: The ‘Spiritual Warfare’ crowd run to prayer corners ‘binding the strong man’ in Jesus name. I’m still looking for this kind of prayer in scripture. Actually, the ‘strong man is bound’ when we practice UNITY with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Leaving fellowship with our local Church body empowers the strong man.
NIKAO is the conquering of fearful tribulation, the world.
John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome [NIKAO] the world.
The word of God, when internalized with the confidence that God loves us, casts out fear. When fear leaves, peace reigns. Job stated that what he feared came upon him (Job 3:25).
When we enter the body of Christ, the enemies of Jesus’ name arise. Persecution often commences and we are immediately tested. Grit grabs gumption and the Lord forbids us to be tempted by satan beyond what we can endure. Overcoming the world is in reality overcoming fear. This is the victory we must secure as it is a battle of fear fought in our mind.
Fear of what one might ask?
- Loss of former relationships
- Loss of Income and Provision
- Loss of family
- Loss of social status
- Loss of the world’s image and admiration
- Persecution from former friends and co-workers
- Forsaking the pleasures of sin, especially alcohol, drugs, and sex
- Unfamiliar territory
- Other people’s opinions
conquers the conforming fear emanating from the world and it’s cultural systems. Peace results from the ‘love of Christ’ which births boldness to serve Him and others,, ignoring the cost.
NIKAO is our justifying ‘faith words’ that enable us to escape the final judgment. This is a confessional evidence proving that the Spirit of Christ dwells in us.
Romans 3:3-4 For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? (4) God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings [logos], and mightest overcome [NIKAO] when thou art judged.
1 John 4:2-4 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: (3) And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. (4) Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome [NIKAO] them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
1 John 5:3-6 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. (4) For whatsoever is born of God overcometh [NIKAO] the world: and this is the victory [NIKE] that overcometh [NIKAO] the world, even our faith. (5) Who is he that overcometh [NIKAO] the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? (6) This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.
Our words must be ‘words of faith’, a statement of truth. These words are confessions that ‘Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ This confession is evidence of the Holy Spirit, that it dwells in us bearing testimony about this truth.
Many are fearful to declare Jesus is Lord, Father and Son, a fusion of full Divinity into humanity. A believing overcomer is a testifying overcomer. An overcomer has NIKAO strength to overcome the world and it’s conforming fears of falsehoods. If the Spirit of Christ is in us, our words of confession will justify us, permitting us to bypass judgment at the last day.
The confession that “Jesus is God manifest in flesh, the Father in the son”, opposes the spirit of antichrist. It is a greater testimony of Him that is in us than the antichrist spirit that is in the world.
NIKAO overcomes evil with good. It is how we prevail against the wicked one.
Romans 12:20-21 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. (21) Be not overcome [NIKAO] of evil, but overcome [NIKAO] evil with good.
1 John 2:12-14 I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name’s sake. (13) I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him
that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome [NIKAO] the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father. (14) I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome [NIKAO] the wicked one.
Fathers, young men, and children who are Christians, have had their sins forgiven by the name of Jesus (Acts 2:38). These people also overcome the evil wicked one with good works of faith.
Good works place purifying coals of holiness onto the minds of those who are the enemies of Christ. The greatest gift of Spiritual ‘food and water’ to an enemy of Christ is the good news of the gospel. This is the greatest of the good works we can do; the feeding of an enemy.
If the enemy overcomes us, then he does so when our good works fail out of spiritual weakness. Condemning an enemy is not how we prevail. But strong NIKAO Christians have the Spirit of Christ in them along with the abiding word of God. When the Spirit of Christ and the Word of God abide in us, the agape’ love of God’s Holiness takes over. Then we know the one from the beginning, even the Father. This is how the Father is shown to us (John 14:9) and boldly empowers us to preach the good news of the Kingdom and declare love for our enemies.
How can we fully conquer the wicked one? What weapons do we possess that are not carnal? The NIAKO weapons of ‘kindness and goodness’ which never repay evil with evil.
The 7 Rewards Jesus gives to those who possess NIKAO and the ‘ears to hear’ the voice of Christ.
Revelation is the only book where God promises a blessing beyond the ordinary if we should read it. I challenge you to persevere and read these next few important passages, obtaining the blessing.
Revelation 2:7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh [NIKAO] will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
Revelation 2:11 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh [NIKAO] shall not be hurt of the second death.
Revelation 2:17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh [NIKAO] will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.
Revelation 2:26-27 And he that overcometh [NIKAO], and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: (27) And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.
Revelation 3:5-6 He that overcometh [NIKAO], the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. (6) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
Revelation 3:12-13 Him that overcometh [NIKAO] will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. (13) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
Revelation 3:20-22 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (21) To him that overcometh [NIKAO] will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame [NIKAO], and am set down with my Father in his throne. (22) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
Notice: We gain ‘ears to hear’ if we have the faith to obey the written word of God and the verbal voice of His Spirit. This produces NIKAO strength in us.
So let me summarize the 7 rewards Jesus gives us if we ‘have ears to hear’:
- Access to the Tree of Life and it’s fruit
- Victory over the 2nd death, eternal judgment
- Hidden manna revelation and an identifying memorial name Jesus alone gives us, identifying our character and ministry (Thou art Peter, and upon this rock…)
- Power and authority to rule the nations with a scepter of hard unbending iron will
- Our name written in the book of life plus a verbal confession of our name before the heavenly council, when the book of life is read aloud by Jesus in heaven
- A permanent eternal place in God’s Temple and eternal City, New Jerusalem (His body). This comes with an imperishable new name which is to be written upon us, identifying that we belong to God, His Kingdom, and Jesus Christ.
- The right to sit with Jesus in His throne of glory. At this illuminated place of authority, grace, and holiness, we will judge angels (aggelos, messengers) with truth.
The NIKAO satan uses to conquer weak Christians.
The only power the devil has over any of us is his voice. In our mind, he conducts warfare, subtly trying to mislead us into falling from the grace, love, and power of Jesus. This demonic voice has risen to a vitriolic pitch, demonizing and persecuting truth seekers. Here is how I think it sounds.
- We don’t need to submit to any authority in our life. We are free to leave the relationships of the organized Church and find some new friends.
- Don’t trust brothers or leadership in the local Church. The devil calls us to fix our leaders and pull the beam out of other’s eyes (not our own) with criticism, not prayer. The devil tells us that God’s waiting on us to ‘say something’, not ‘pray something’.
- It’s just one saint. Run them out of the Church. We don’t have to reconcile or tolerate the differences we know that exist between us and them. Forget that story about sweeping the floor looking for a coin or that one about the pearl of great price. It doesn’t apply to modern day leaders who cringe at immature trouble makers sitting on the pew.
- Skip worship and Biblical teaching. Use the computer and the internet to get fed. God understands we’re busy. TV evangelists really do pray for those thousands of letters they receive each week! Uh huh.
- Hey, I don’t need the approval of men. House church makes me the Bishop! Lord knows I’m more qualified than that guy behind the box who doesn’t show his salary or parsonage fees at the annual meeting.
God has designed us to defeat satan through the Word and Spirit. But if we have a weak gate in our Kingdom wall which we either have ignored or left unrepaired, then we will be conquered by the enemy. If he conquers us, we lose the 7 rewards.
Looking to the end of days, scripture tells us that we will give an account for every IDLE word at the judgment seat of Christ. Please be aware that the word IDLE implies blasphemous tearing down
words. A Christian’s words are supposed to edify, that is, build up.
Recently I read a book by a house Church leader with several positive testimonies you normally find by supporters in the front of the book. One comment in particular showed the spirit of some in this movement. The woman Eileen wrote,
“T___’s book is a must read for anyone who has become dissatisfied with the way church is happening today….It’s pyramid system of leadership that closes the door to all but a select few while everyone else pays their tithes into the storehouse, then sits and listens obediently.”
I could write more about the spirit of the terse verse Eileen wrote above, but this much is clear: TEAR DOWN, BEAT DOWN, I’m right and they’re wrong. It’s an old song originally written by Korah (Numbers 16). As one wise man said to me,
“Rebels are dictators in training.”
Matthew 12:36 But I say unto you, That every idle [argos, negative] word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.
Now consider the two passages below from Revelation. Notice that in the first passage, the beast conquers the saints. Yet in the second, the Lamb (body of Christ) conquers the beast. What gives?
To properly understand this paradox, be aware that convictions must be tested. If God permits the saints to be conquered and martyred by the beast, then a great purpose must be in the Lord’s mind. (Note: It may be that martyrdom occurs when the enemy cannot use a saint for ‘propaganda purposes’. Namely, to tear down the Church and the name of Jesus).
Revelation 13:6-8 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy [tear down] against God,
to blaspheme [tear down] his name, and his tabernacle [His body], and them that dwell in heaven [the Church]. (7) And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome [NIKAO] them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. (8) And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
Revelation 17:13-14 These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. (14) These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome [NIKAO] them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him [body of Christ] are called, and chosen, and faithful.
God permits satan a NIKAO victory, but two witnesses overcome martyrdom.
Notice again in two passages below, the two witnesses of the end time are identified. Is it possible that these two are really the dual aspect of a Christian’s faith, a faith one is willing to die for? And what is the dual aspect of our faith anyway?
- Blood of the Lamb
- Word (Confession) of their Testimony (identified above, Jesus is God in flesh)
Revelation 12:10-11 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. (11) And they overcame [NIKAO] him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
The US Supreme Court ruled in a landmark case that in order for someone to have a genuine religious conviction (versus a preference), then these 5 tests must be met:
- One would be willing to die for that conviction. If one is not willing to die for the conviction, then it is not a conviction at all, but merely a preference.
- No amount of family pressure can cause one to change a true conviction
- Peer pressure fear cannot cause one to change a real conviction.
- Threats of a lawsuit cannot cause one to change a Bible conviction.
- Threats of jail cannot cause one to change a truth conviction.
Notice again that in one passage the beast conquers the saints, yet in the other, the Lamb (body of Christ) conquers him. What is going on?
Look closely at what happens to the two end time witnesses in the passage below.
Revelation 11:6-7 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will. (7) And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome [NIKAO] them,and kill them.
Armed with a better understanding of conviction, we see that satan is given NIKAO over the two witnesses not because ‘he is greater’, but because they choose to die for their belief in the ‘blood of the Lamb’ and the ‘word of their testimony’. Why would God give satan such NIKAO power when we know that ‘greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world’? Here is one possible answer:
God has permitted this NIKAO to satan before without interfering. Why? Because of a choice by the human interlocutor. Prior to the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was granted the right to choose whether to lay down his life or to take it up (John 10:15-18, 15:13, 1 John 3:16).
Thus we have our answer regarding the NIKAO of satan over the two end time witnesses as well as all other martyrs. In the case of the two witnesses, their martyrdom is a death choice made to bring Israel into the faith of Jesus Christ. In the case of Jesus, it was a choice to bring mankind into fellowship with God.
God avenges a martyr’s blood with great revival. satan went too far with Jesus and His martyrs because blood and life go together.
Revelation 6:9-11 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: (10) And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? (11) And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.
The Wrong kind of NIKOS. The NIKAO of Nikolaos and the Nicolaitans
Nicholas is one of the Greek names the Apostles chose to ‘wait on tables’, distributing tithes and offerings to the needy (Acts 6:1-6) in the congregation. The definition for the word NIKOS (Nikolaos) is the name that conquers. Thus we discover the meaning from two verses where Jesus states that He hates the teaching of Nicolaitan believers. Using word definitions alone, we can construe what this teaching or doctrine was.
Nico – A conquering name of a conquering individual. Christians are not permitted to conquer in any other name than JESUS. When individuals lift up their own name and place it above the name of JESUS, they have fallen into the trap of infallibility. This is the sin of iniquity where a mere man makes himself into God, far higher than anyone else’s spirituality. Said another way, SPIRITUAL PRIDE. There are no Popes or Fathers in Christianity. The only head of any believer is JESUS, not a Bishop, Archbishop, or Pope.
The statement above does not give Christians license to be rebellious, divisive, or trash talkers. It does give us however, a license to pray.
Laitans – Simply, the laity.
Although not read frequently enough, Peter gives us the correct teaching for all men and women called to leadership and followership in the Church.
1 Peter 5:2-6 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; (3) Neither as being lords [katakurieuō – control, dominate, subjugate] over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. (4) And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. (5) Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. (6) Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
Key words in Peter’s discourse is FEED, OVERSIGHT, FILTHY MONEY, WILLING MIND, LORDS-DOMINEERING, HERITAGE-SONS, SUBMIT-TO-ELDERS, SUBMIT-TO-EACH-OTHER, HUMILITY, MIGHTY-GOD, EXALTATION.
The issue in the passage above is ‘self exaltation’ of one over another. This warning is first issued to FEEDERS then to FEEDEES. In my mind, Peter’s message above provides the conviction regarding the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which results in works that Jesus hates. Let’s be sure we know who the Father is (Matt 23:9): Is it Jesus or a man wearing a clerical collar and vestments, manipulating others as did Simon Magnus (Acts 8:9-11, 18-24)?
Revelation 2:6-7 But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. (7) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh [NIKAO] will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
Revelation 2:15-17 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. (16) Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth. (17) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh [NIKAO] will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.
It is very likely that the teaching of the Nicolaitans was the doctrine of
domination of the needy lambs looking to be fed, not fleeced or abused as one would an unpaid slave. Exercising dominion, subjugating people with manipulating spirituality, is a serious sin. Jesus knows every believers kneemail
address and is quite capable of giving each of us direction and ears to hear. Elders are needed and so are leaders. But love must always be the motive to minister, not control.
Matthew 20:25-28 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion [katakurieuō – control, dominate, subjugate] over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. (26) But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; (27) And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: (28) Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
To summarize, NIKE, NIKOS, NIKAO, NIKOLAS, and NICOLAITANS are all words of conquest, victory, and overcoming power. How we use these words in the body of Christ is vitally important. Word studies can really help a Christian grow.