Jentezen Franklin - Born To Win
I want you to see in Genesis 49, and this is what it says in Verse 19,"Gad," G-A-D. "Gad, a troop shall tramp upon him," I love this, "But he shall triumph in the end". There's gonna be a season when he's gonna be trampled down and look like a loser, but really what the father is saying to the son is you were born to win, and in the end, even though momentarily it will look like the dream is finished, your life is not be anything worth celebrating, it will look like a troop has trampled you, we would say, in the ground, but in the end, you'll triumph. In the end, you'll win. This was Jacob's last conversation with his sons. If you read the context, it actually closes out by him leaning on his staff and dying.
So, he calls his boys in. He had 12 sons that would become the 12 Tribes of Israel, and Jacob begins to prophesy over each one of those which I love this because the father's giving his children their identity and their future, and he speaks words that are powerful. Something for them to live up to. Something for them to remind themselves of concerning their destiny when things get tough, and he gets to the boy named Gad, and he says, son, it's gonna look like a troop is gonna trample you down, and everybody will pretty much write you off, but in the end, you're gonna win. You're born, he's saying in so many words, you were born to win, not to lose.
I love that. I love the fact that Bible said that he called, they called for the sons of Jacob. Now listen. This is very important. The sons of Jacob, and then it said, "and they heard the voice of Israel". You remember, this is two people in one body because Jacob was Israel. Remember, God changed his name from Jacob to Israel. Jacob means a supplanter, a thief, a robber, a cheat, a liar, a no good. That's what it means, Jacob. But Israel means a prince with God. And you remember when Jacob wrestled with God, and God said no longer will your name be called Jacob. You name will be called Israel.
And what's interesting is they called for the sons of Jacob, but they heard the voice of Israel. The same man with two different experiences. The old Jacob was a liar, a cheat, a thief, but when God got finished with him the same day, became Israel, a prince with God who had power with God and favor with men. And the voice of Israel was the one that influenced them. Your earthly father may have been an alcoholic. He may have abandoned you. He may have walked away from you. But your spiritual father is God. He is your Heavenly Father, and He says I'll never leave you, and I'll never forsake you.
And I love the fact in a fatherless generation what a model for us to see that fathers and parents can speak identity into their children and give them their identity and paint them a picture of their future, and God says I'll back it up. He wanted to give his sons identity, and he said a troop will come over you and seemingly defeat you, but in the end, you'll overcome. In the end, you'll win. I'm gonna tell you who you are, and I'm gonna tell you where you'll be. When he was born at his birth, his mother saw the same thing, and she said I'm gonna name him Gad which means a troop cometh. A troop cometh.
In other words, all she saw was the negative stuff that was gonna come against him, but Israel said or Jacob said I'm not going to leave it there. Yes, you're gonna face a lot of setbacks and a lot of hits, and it's not gonna be an easy life for you, son. I'm just telling you the truth. He said let me let you know that it's not gonna end with a troop trampling you down to the ground. In the end, you will overcome. There will be at times a severe struggle, but in the end, you will win. In the end you will get back up. You were born to overcome. You were born to win.
Gad, you're gonna get down, but you're gonna get back up. You were not born to be defeated. You were not born to be depressed and discouraged permanently. You were not born to be destroyed by the things that come against your life whether it's abuse, whether it's addiction. I'm not denying that temporarily things will seem to triumph and trample you, but I'm telling you that is not your destiny and that is not your future because in the end, I had you born to win. You were not born for failure. Boy, I want this to get into somebody because internal talk matters. What you say to yourself matters. I'm not talented enough. I'm not good enough. I'm not as good as somebody. All of that matters. And he says you were not born to lose. You were not born to be insignificant. You were born to win.
And so, when you get in those times when it looks like you're losing, you have to remind yourself of the prophesy that's over your life. There will be times when it feels like you can't put one foot in front of the other. There will be times when you feel like what's the use of even trying anymore? My dreams are so smashed and demolished, and it feels like I'm trampled to the ground. But he said that you were not born to be defeated. You were born to win, and I'm giving you something to live up to. I don't want you to get your identity from Tik Tok. I don't want you to get your identity from Hollywood. I don't want you get your identity from a game. I don't want you to get your identity from a protest group. I'm gonna give you your identity. I've got a powerful destiny for your life, and they're not gonna give you your identity. I'm gonna give it to you.
You say, well, my father did leave me, and my earthly father was terrible, and I don't have anybody who spoke any good words. All I heard was you're nothing and you're nobody. Well, you've got spiritual fathers, and I'm one of them, and here's the powerful thing. In John 1:12, "to as many as received them, to them gave he power to become the sons or daughters of God". I don't care who your earthly father was. If you believe on Him, He says now you're my son, and I'm not raising up a bunch of losers. I give you identity, and I give you a future. Clap your hands and thank God for the truth of this word. You were born to win. You were born to win. Yes, you'll be trampled. Yes, it'll be tough. Yes, you'll feel like quitting, but you were born to win. You were born to win.
1 John 4 puts it like this, "Whatever or whoever," the King James says, "is born of God overcomes the world, and this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith". What he's saying is you're born of God, and God has spoken over you your identity, and it's not an identity of the past that makes you feel like a loser or maybe even your present that feels like that you're being trampled, but He's calling you to higher things. He says that you were born to win. It doesn't mean you won't have problems, but you'll overcome the problems. It doesn't mean that you won't have great enormous challenges, but it doesn't mean you won't go through pandemics, but what I put in you is stronger, and I'm gonna pull you through it. You're gonna get to the other side.
We were not born to quit. We were not born to give up. A righteous man falls seven times a day but rise again. When you have a righteous spirit, it's defined by how many times you get up. I love the fact that he said something else about winners when he said in Deuteronomy 33 we're told that the tribe of Gad was there, and God speaks a blessing, and he says blessed is he who enlarges Gad. The word enlarge means to help, assist into the inheritance. God said winners have to be enlarged or encouraged is another word. Helped. Assisted at certain times, especially when they're low. And he says if you wanna be blessed, learn to be an encourager to people who have a destiny on their life that when they're talking about giving up, you don't get down there in the pity part with them, but you grab them by the hand and say you can't quit.
That's not what God says about you. You can't give up. I'm not gonna let you give up. I'm not gonna let your lay in that addiction the rest of your life. That's not who you were born to be. You were born to win. Jeremiah 12 said that if you can't run with the footmen and if you run with the footmen and they weary you, how will you contend with the horses? In other words, this is not a negative statement, but if you're giving up, if you're talking about giving up when the footmen are coming, that's the foot soldiers.
There were foot soldiers and there were horsemen, you know, that had a great advantage back in the days. They didn't have guns, so you know, the footmen were discouraging you, and God says, Jeremiah, if you're a little discouraged, you don't understand what... if the footmen weary you, what are you gonna do when the horsemen come? And we almost make that negative, but what God is really saying is the footmen level is not where I called you to. I've called you to bigger things. You have no idea how great your future is and if you're giving up over little footmen, you won't be able to handle the big world I'm about to put you in. When I look at this ministry, the footmen used to trouble me. Little things. Just little stuff. Sister Bucket Mouth could put me in the pit. Just anybody criticizing me.
Now, I've just learned that don't even matter. When you get up here it's a different thing. The horsemen are coming at you. But really, it's encouraging because God says you're not staying at that level. Why are you freaking out at that level when where I'm taking you is so much bigger because you were born to win. Everybody take a praise break. 1 Chronicles says something else that's powerful about winners. Everybody say winners are encouragers, and everybody say this, winners need encouragement. The second thing I want you to notice in 1 Chronicles 12 is God says the Gadites shall be men of war for battle, and He said they shall have faces like lions and feet as swift as deer. He gives a description of a winner, and He says one of the ways that a person you know they're a winner is they have a face like a lion.
A lion is a predator, and his eyes are not, he didn't have one eye over here and one eye over here like a deer. He has his eyes in front and is so that he has, listen, laser focus. See, winners have to get laser focused, and they're not distracted and deterred by all the noise and this and that and this and that, but this one thing I do I reach for the prize of the high calling. I have a destiny, and I can't let all of this and all of this distract me. I have laser focus. Laser focus. You don't get your eyes all down here. You're looking under Jesus and realizing what He's called you to do will require laser focus.
What are you focusing on? You set your eyes on the prize for the joy that was set before Him, Jesus endured the cross. When He was in His torture season. When He was being trampled and spit upon, He carried the cross, but the Bible said His eyes weren't all down here listening to every criticism and lie that was being told about Him because He said for the joy that was set before Him during His crucifixion He was seeing the resurrection. He endured the cross. The second thing is it says and his feet, a winner, has feet that are swift as a deer. He leaves swiftly. He moves quickly like a deer. What does that mean? Joseph is a beautiful picture of a winner.
Joseph had a magnificent dream, but Potiphar's wife with a spirit of adultery tried to get him in the bed. She said three times lie with me. My husband's on a business trip. Lie with me. Lie with me. She seduced him and tricked him to come into the bedroom, and I'm sure she had on a biblical dress, lo and behold, and it let everything hang out and showing him, you know, come on into my bed, the bible said that he ran and got out of there, and she ripped his coat off. Poor guy. His brothers ripped his coat off. He couldn't keep a coat. He lost two coats, but he kept his dream.
You might go through seasons of losing stuff, but if you follow God, you'll hold onto the dream, and in the end, he got the coat back. He got a ring of authority back, and all the barns and their corn of the world, he owned it, but the test was in that room, that bedroom when he acted like a winner and had deer feet. You gotta now when to get out of there. Something pops up on your computer, get out of there. Swift feet.
You go somewhere with people, and they start pulling out cocaine and some party turns into something, get out of there. Get on a date, and you thought he was saved, and then you find out he's only saved from the head down to the waist. The rest of him is not saved. Get of the car and call Uber if you have to, but get deer feet because winners know Gotta walk careful in dangerous, highly dangerous times. And to give you one more, well, if you're gonna get anything out of it, you're on my last point almost.
The greatest danger to winners is found in the story of Gad. Gad associated and teamed up and started camping out for 40 years in the wilderness with another tribe called Reuben, and this is the prophesy over Reuben from the father the same day he spoke over Gad, "Reuben, you're my firstborn. My might and the beginning of my strength". He's speaking now. He's saying these things should be in you: might, strength. "The excellency of dignity, the excellency of power". In other words, you are loaded, boy, with incredible, incredible potential. But watch the next verse, "You're as unstable as water and because of your instability, you will not excel".
Now, what does that mean, unstable as water? Water is unstable because water changes in whatever atmosphere it gets in. If you put water in a cold atmosphere, a freezing atmosphere, it turns to ice. If you put water that's ice into a warm atmosphere, it turns to liquid. It can turn to steam. It becomes like the environment it's put in, and he said, son, you have so much potential, but you're unstable as water. If you would just be who you are and then if they don't change, get deer feet and get out of there, but you've gotta have laser focus to do what the place I'm taking you to. You've gotta have something in you. You've gotta stay encouraged, and you're not gonna get encouraged...
Here's the point. The greatest danger to winners is hanging out and associating with the wrong people because when Gad who is full of potential and born to win, when they started camping out for 40 years everywhere the camp was set up, Reuben and Gad stuck together just like Judah and Benjamin stuck together. Every one of them kind of had partners of tribes that stuck together more than others like a family, but they stuck together those two. Now listen, and when it came time for Israel to cross the Jordan River into the Promised Land, your Bible said... We preach and tell people that all the children of Israel came across. That's not what it says. Two tribes stayed on the other side of the river and never entered the Promised Land. Guess who those tribes were?
Reuben said I like it here. Let's settle here. This is good, but it's not God's best, and Gad because of their tight association with Reuben, the greatest danger to a winner is who you associate with because negative people will make you settle for less. Dream thieves will take away what God has called you to because they'll convince you that you can't do it. Who you associate with is critical. Preaching better than y'all letting on. He said I want you to win, but you're not gonna win unless you quit hanging around the wrong people.
If you're struggling with drugs, quit hanging around drug addicts. If you have an alcohol problem, and you can't control it, quit hanging around a bunch of drinkers. If you are a negaholic, you don't need to get around other people who are negative. It brings the worst out of you. Stay away from unstable people. Get laser focused. Get a made-up mind. Get deer feet that get you out of negative situations quick because God says I have a high calling for you. You were born to win. You can't play around with losers. Get away from the wrong crowd and when you see that, that you were born to win, I wanna conclude with this.
The Bible said, "Thanks be unto God which always causes us to triumph in Christ". "Thanks be unto God which always causes us". The word cause means assigning blame for manipulating the outcome. They caused it. They manipulated the outcome. God says I am manipulating the outcome of your life to win. You always triumph. You always win if you stay connected to me even if your present is being trampled. In the end you win if you stay connected to me.