Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Dressed for the Battle

When praying the Lord’s Prayer, we pray “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” It might be clearer if we pray “deliver us from the evil one.” And the best way to be delivered is by being prepared.

Paul tells us in Ephesians 6:10-18 that we must put on the whole armor of God that we may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. We wrestle not with “flesh and blood, but against principalities…against spiritual wickedness.” The faithful Christian life is a battle, it is warfare on a grand scale - because when we begin to serve God, and He begins to bless and use us, Satan begins to attack.

This is not a suggestion. Paul tells us twice to put on the whole armor of God and he tells us 4 times to STAND. This is not something we are to put on and take off. We are to be continually putting it on.

God will deliver us, but He does expect us to take on part of the responsibility by being prepared. But note - there’s no armor for the backside - so don’t even think about running away!

So, how do we do this? I like to do it during my prayer time in the mornings and it is easier to remember if we put it on from the top to bottom. We can actually say,
“Lord, in Jesus’ name, I put on your whole Armor.”

As I put on my helmet of Salvation -
“Lord, protect my mind and my thinking today. May my logic be Your logic.”
As I put on my breastplate of Righteousness -
“Lord, protect my heart, and my emotions, lest I respond emotionally.”
As I put on my belt of Truth -
“I thank you Lord. I know who I am and whose I am in Christ.”
As I put on my shoes of the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace
“Lord, may I always walk in the will of God, being prepared and able to stand against anything Satan may throw at me.”
As I pick up my Sword of the Spirit -
“Lord arm me with the Sword which is the defensive and offensive word of God, and is needed internally as well as externally. Lord, please cut away anything that doesn’t need to be in my life. And Lord, help me to sharpen and polish my Sword every day, because if I do not know the Word, then I have a dull and dirty Sword.
Thank You for this Armor.
In Jesus name, Amen.

As we wear the Armor of God, we are to be “praying always…with all perseverance.”
And having done all, to …STAND!

Biblical References for the Armor of God

Knowing that Paul was imprisoned at the time of this writing, most people naturally presume that he drew his imagery from the Roman soldier to whom he was chained. And while that may have sparked his memory, there are numerous Old Testament passages of scripture that describe the “spiritual armor” and Paul himself uses several examples of spiritual warfare. A few are listed here.

References to Spiritual Warfare
I Timothy 1:18
II Thessalonians 2:9
II Corinthians 6:7
II Corinthians 10:3-4
I Peter 5:8
Revelation 12:17

Spiritual Armor - Romans 13:12

1) Helmet of Salvation: Isaiah 59:17; I Thessalonians 5:8
2) Breast Plate of Righteousness: Isaiah 59:17; I Thessalonians 5:8;
II Corinthians 6:7
3) Belt of Truth: Isaiah 11:5
4) Shoes of the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace: Isaiah 52:7; Romans 10:5
5) Shield of Faith: Genesis 15:1; II Samuel 22:3; Proverbs 30:5; Deu. 33:29; Psalms 3:3; 5:12; 28:7; 84:9; 91:4; 115:9-11;
6) Sword of the Spirit: Isaiah 49:2; Hebrews 4:12

May God bless you in the study of His word!



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