BELT OF TRUTH: Paul likens the TRUTH of God’s Word to a BELT that secures the LOOSE thoughts and emotions that can trip us up when we engage life in a spiritually hostel world.
THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS:This is a reference to the “practical righteousness” of faithful obedience to the truth in God’s Word. When we live in faithful obedience it protects us from Satan’s accusations about our unworthiness of His love
SHOES OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE: The point of The Armor is that God wants us to STAND on the ground of Victory and Freedom Jesus has given us. The Gospel reminds us that God is not asking us to make ourselves acceptable to Him but that through the cross, Jesus removes our unacceptability, covering us with His acceptability.
THE SHIELD OF FAITH: …you might not notice this if it were not pointed out, but there’s a transition between the first three and last three pieces of armor.
Paul writes: “In all circumstances take up…” the point is, on the battlefield there are certain pieces of armor that are never taken off and others that are “at the ready” for when fighting actually ensues. The Shield is on such piece of armor.
This shield was designed to protect against the “arrows of fire” that the enemy use against them.
Satan has arrows of fire also. Paul calls them “flaming darts” …temptations that seek to inflame us to hatred, envy, anger, covetousness, pride, doubt, fear, despair, immorality.
Satan’s first temptation was shot to inflame doubt in Eve about God’s goodness. He sought to inflame distrust in God,
TRUTH POINT: That’s what every temptation is about. To cause us to doubt God’s motives toward us. He wants us to think that faithfulness to God will cause us to miss out on something spectacular.
What is FAITH? FAITH = resting our whole weight of our life and eternity, on God.
Resting the full weight of my life in the trustworthiness of God becomes for me a shield that will protect me when Satan seeks to inflame me to step away from the ground of victory and freedom I have in Christ.
THE HELMET OF SALVATION: If an enemy wants to put you down for the count, a “head-shot” is what they’ll go for. Enemy forces on horseback would ride among the foot soldiers swinging a 3-4 foot “broadsword”. From their elevated position they had a good shot hat either spitting heads open or decapitating their victims.
Paul equates the helmet with SALVATION. it gives us an indication of one of the places Satan likes to strike us… the point of our security and assurance in Christ.
The two edges of Satan’s spiritual broadsword are discouragement and doubt. The Prophet Elijah faced such an attack. On the heels of his victory against the 450 prophets of Baal, he found himself overwhelmed with discouragement and doubt when Queen Jezebel threatened to kill him.
TRUTH POINT: It is on the heels of victory that we often experience Satan’s broadsword of discouragement and doubt. He takes a swing at our security and assurance in Christ to shake our confidence in God’s commitment to us.
This is where an understanding of what our salvation is based on is crucial
Reminding myself of the gospel daily (i.e. putting on the helmet of salvation) becomes a spiritual protection against Satan’s broadsword of discouragement and doubt about God’s unwavering commitment to me His child.
Memorizing and quoting Ephesians 2:8-10 is a good example of daily preaching the gospel to yourself
If you want to know what preaching the gospel to yourself looks like, here it is.
This is an encouraging quote from Dr. John McArthur:
Absolutely no circumstance – no failure, shortcoming, or sin, no matter how serious – can cause either Jesus or His Father to disown a person who is saved. Based on John 6:37,29
When you remember what salvation is and where it comes from, it becomes a protective helmet that keeps the broadsword of discouragement and doubt at bay.
THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT: Whereas the spiritual forces of darkness use the broadsword to swing indiscriminately at our confidence in Jesus, God gives us His Word as a precision instrument to set the enemy running.
The sword was attached to the belt of the soldier and so we come full circle back to the BELT OF TRUTH.
We are to “gird” ourselves with the BELT OF TRUTH, upon which we wear THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT, which is THE WORD OF GOD. John 17:17
Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness:
His identity through the resurrection… Jesus went to the heart of the matter again. Deuteronomy 6:16
Matthew tells us that after this… the devil left Him, and behold, angels come and ministered to Him. Matthew 4:11 Three strategic thrusts with The Sword of The Spirit and Satan was on the run James 4:7
TRUTH POINT: One submits themselves to God by placing God’s Word in their heart… and one resists the Devil by using that Word, to deflect the temptations he brings our way.
There is so much more that could be said, so many illustrations and situations we could address, but in two weeks I’ve given you enough to know what God’s Armor is for and something about how to use it.
The Whole Armor of God… it’s what the well-dressed Christian wears every day… it takes intentionality!
It’s the only way to WITHSTAND the spiritual attacks that come from the spiritual forces of darkness. The only way to remain STANDING in the position of victory and freedom Jesus won for you through His cross and resurrection.
The Mission Church is committed to serving God by making disciples in the Des Moines area.
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