So many times, as I browse through the pages of Facebook, I see where many Christians are posting about “putting on the Armor of God.” Every time I see that, my mind begins to wander what the author may be talking about.
Are they currently facing troubles they’re trying to work through or just preparing themselves for the day? I’d like to think they mean the latter as we all face various challenges every day of our lives and, in my humble opinion, we should don our armor every day.
Every morning I wake up, as I shuffle through our home, you can hear me talking to God or Jesus asking for the blessings of the Holy Spirit. I actually carry on regular conversations, feeling or hearing the responses, and getting head-nodding stares from the dog wondering who I’m talking to. After all, she isn’t really understanding me so why the rambling?
This rambling is really just a part of my preparation for the day. Here is where I feel I am putting on the Armor of God. I do as everyone else would do as I shower, shave, brush my teeth and various other tasks for the day. Once that is complete, I then don my armor.
I say my prayers, confess my sins, ask for forgiveness and strength and, most importantly, give thanks for all that I have and all that is yet to come. My armor is in place!
This morning, I’d like to talk a little about Paul’s letter, or epistle to the Ephesians, the 10th book of the New Testament. The 6th chapter, 10th to the 18th verses speak to us about the Armor of God.
Easy question really. The answer is simply, because the Bible tells us to.
Ephesians 6:10-11 – “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.”
As Christians, we are going to be faced with more challenges than any of the non-believers. Why? Because the devil is not at all happy with our closeness to God. He will do anything in his power to draw us back to him and keep God out of our lives.
So, exactly, what is it we’re preparing for? Again, let’s go on with Ephesians.
Ephesians 6:12 – “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
There you have it! As I’ve already mentioned, we’re preparing to do battle with the devil or the “dark forces” of this world.
Do you remember when Jesus was in the desert for forty days and forty nights? Remember how the devil tempted Him three times?
On the third time…
Matthew 4:8:11 – “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. ‘All this I will give you,’ he said, ‘if you will bow down and worship me.’
Jesus said to him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written: Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’”
To me, it shows v that the devil does have say on earth. He can grant kingdoms or cities to you. But we shouldn’t be misled by this as we know, all too well, how the devil lies. Whatever he might grant you will surely perish before your eyes.
Let’s go on with Ephesians…
Ephesians 6:14-17 – “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”
“In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
I’ll get to it in just a moment, but I think the Bible is telling us very clearly how to don the Armor of God.
Now, one of the most important parts about “Donning your Armor…”
Ephesians 6:18 – “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”
How to Don Our Armor
Okay, now we know why we need to don the Armor of God so let’s go through some steps we can take to do just that.
I found this little procedure quite some time ago, based on the story in Ephesians that will help us better understand how to “Don the Armor of God.” It came from a children’s Bible study book but, I think, it puts this in a nice little order.
Belt of Truth – We need to put this on first to be truthful and remember the truth we know about God. We can know the truth by reading the Bible, the Spirit telling us (giving us a conscience) or learning from other people who believe in God the same as us.
Breastplate of Righteousness – If you ever played hockey, you probably had something that protected the part between your neck and stomach. This piece also protects your heart. We can protect our heart by confessing any sin we have or simply apologizing to God for things we’ve done wrong.
Sandals of Peace – We need to protect our feet and go where God would have us go. Our feet would get sore if we walked around with no shoes on, so we need to avoid places we know we shouldn’t go to keep our protective sandals on.
Second, we need to be peaceful with others. If there is someone you’re fighting with or if you’ve hurt someone’s feelings, you need to go ask for their forgiveness or forgive those who have wronged you.
Third, if you find things are a little hectic, God is the peacemaker, and if you ask, He can give you all the peace you need.
Shield of Faith – The next piece of armor you don’t have to wear; instead, you hold it. Just think of what you could do with a real shield. If someone throws a stone at you, you can lift the shield, so it doesn’t hit you at all. We can use the shield in the same way when evil comes our way like temptations or doubt.
Sometimes the devil will try to make us think that there isn’t a God, or that He doesn’t love us because we’ve done something wrong. We need to hold up our shield and stop these thoughts when this happens and remember that God loves us no matter what.
Helmet of Salvation – This is what we use to protect our minds. Sometimes we need to remember that we’re God’s children and He loves us and will help us. We also need to remember what we’ve read in the Bible and learned from our church about God. That will help us make the right decisions.
The Sword of the Spirit – The sword is both the Bible and having the Spirit of God work in us. We can cut anything off that isn’t good in our lives. By remembering God’s word (the Bible) we will be able to tell what is good and what is bad.
Prayer – This the last piece of armor. This isn’t a particular piece of armor but kind of holds all our armor together. By talking to God, we can do amazing things. Nothing is too big or impossible with prayer because God can do anything that He wants to. That doesn’t mean that He will always answer the way we want Him to, but He will answer the way He knows is best.
Ready for Battle
After all of this, are we ready for battle? I think there is one more simple verse from Jeremiah, the Old Testament, that will help us prepare.
Jeremiah 46:4 – “Harness the horses, mount the steeds! Take your positions with helmets on! Polish your spears, put on your armor!”
Now… we’re ready to face the world without fear of losing to the devil!
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This world puts so many challenges before us. We need to remember, the majority of these are the doings of the devil. We are protected from these things if we follow the instructions we were given in our Bible.
The devil will appear to us in many forms:
- Hardships – He will put obstacles before us that we will not feel capable of handling. (We’re too weak)
- Financial burden – He will take our income away when we have forgotten to give thanks for all that we had.
- Arguments – Simple conversations will turn into major disputes as he puts anger in our hearts.
- Death/Disease – He will use the sickness and death that this world brings us to lower our spirits; destroy our faith; and take us as far away from God as he can.
Don’t despair. Remember our lessons. Remember we are Loved unconditionally and He will take care of us. Remember to “Look-Up,” give thanks for all that you have and all that you’ve yet to receive.
Don your Armor and prepare for battle each and every morning you wake. Call it “playing the role” if you like but believe in it and practice it every day!
Go with God; be good to one another; always stay humble; always be kind… God Bless!