One Step At A Time Christian Growth Series - Step 14 - Armour Of God
“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”
(Ephesians 6:11)

A book called “Dress for Success” became popular many years ago. Similar fashion and clothing books have been released since. Our nation has become very “fashion conscious.” There are clothes to attend weddings in, to play sports in, and to relax in. There is a “look” for every group.

However, God has a different wardrobe for a Christian if we are to dress for success in the Christian life. It is called the whole armour of God. Most Christians have overlooked it.

Ephesians 6:11-17, “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:”

The book of Ephesians was written to Christians who lived in Ephesus. It was a tourist and trade center. The people were steeped in idolarty and worshipped the goddess Diana, they even worshipped a meteorite that had fallen. There was lucrative trade in making silver shrines of Diana. You can see how difficult it would have been to live in a city such as Ephesus. The Holy Spirit gave this passage of Scripture to Paul to equip the Christians in Ephesus. We can use it today, too.

Every Christian is born a warrior. Our destiny is to be assaulted and our duty is to attack. Four times the word STAND is mentioned here. Defensively we are to “defend the faith once delivered to the saints.” Offensively we are to stand because the “gates of Hell will not prevail against us.” Our three enemies are the world, the flesh, and the devil. We have a Captain to fight for, a banner to fight under, and Christians to fight beside. Many Christians have fought before us—David with Goliath, Samson with the Philistines, Gideon with the Midianites, and Nehemiah with Sanballat and Tobiah. The size of the battles vary. The seasons of war are sometimes long.

OUR BATTLES

1. We must be on the watch constantly.

Matthew 26:41, “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

2. There are special seasons to watch.

Summertime, holidays, times of sickness and times of success are when many Christians are most vulnerable to attack. When we are out of schedule or not feeling well, we tend to let our guard down. When success comes it is easy for pride to defeat us.

3. Jesus was our example.

Jesus’ life was not a life of ease and comfort. He had spiritual battles, too. Read Matthew 4 about the devil’s temptations on Jesus. Later on, the people tried to make Jesus king. He had to avoid the wrong timing of His kingdom. When He was on the cross, some people tempted Him to come down. What victory Jesus had! He wants it to become ours! I Corinthians 15:57, “But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

4. Attack comes unexpectedly.

As Pearl Harbor surprised America, spiritual warfare often surprises Christians. You must be armed before the attacks come.

5. We must get our armour from God.

“No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper,” says the Scripture. It is not the power of positive thinking but God’s armour of protection that we need. Ephesians 6:11, “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” We must have the whole armour. No part can be exposed to the attack of the enemy.

6. There is no armour for the back.

God’s armour is for those going forward in their Christian life. This is the reason backsliders are so defeated. They have turned their back to enemy attack. Luke 9:62, “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” A great preacher once said, “If I falter, push me on. If I stumble, pick me up. If I retreat, shoot me!”

7. We must put the armour on.

Ephesians 6:11, “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”

Ephesians 6:13, “Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” We are to do it consciously.

THE PIECES OF ARMOUR

1. LOINS GIRT ABOUT WITH TRUTH (BELT)

Ephesians 6:14, “Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth...” This girdle or belt tied all the other armour together. It kept the robe from tangling. The meaning of “truth” in this passage is sincerity, transparency, or realness. The Scripture mentions the “unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” Jesus said, “And you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” Realness, sincerity, or transparency sets us free from being a fake. It frees us from the “fear of man” or peer pressure. God hates hypocrisy. The word hypocrite means “actor” or “one who wears a mask.” The first piece of armour is sincerity, realness or transparency. Being real keeps you from so many attacks of the enemy. Live a godly life. Forget about impressing anyone. Be yourself.

2. BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

“...and having on the breastplate of righteousness;” (Ephesians 6:14) The root word of righteousness is “right.” The breastplate guarded the most vital organ-the heart. Right living guards our heart from wrong emotions and temptations. The habit of right living is a defense against wrong. We are to be militant—“zealous of good works.” Proverbs 4:23, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” Keep means to guard.

3. FEET SHOD (SHOES)

Ephesians 6:15, “And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;” A wise general looks after his soldiers’ shoes. If they wear our, the troops cannot travel. The roads are rough! Footprints of peace are to be left by Christian soldiers everywhere they go. Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” (Matthew 5:9). Romans 10:15, “And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” We are to leave peace wherever we go and bring peace between God and man as we witness. Philippians 4:7, “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Prayer keeps our mind at peace. Prayer keeps our footing firm. God gave us feet so we could spread the gospel. Let’s use them for Him!

4. SHIELD OF FAITH

Ephesians 6:16, “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” The Roman shield was about as big as a door. It protected the entire body. They could even be hooked to other shields to form a wall. Some even poured water on their shields to quench fiery darts. In the Old Testament, God told Abraham that He would be his shield and strength. Our shield of faith comes from Bible ready. Romans 10:17 says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Faith makes us grow. Faith protects us from heresy. Faith entices us to claim God’s promises. Faith is believing God’s word to the point of putting it to the test.

5. HELMET OF SALVATION

Ephesians 6:17, “And take the helmet of salvation...” The helmet was the most elaborately designed piece of armour, and it was beautiful. It is a picture of ASSURANCE OF SALVATION. A Christian who has doubts about whether he is saved or not will not win many battles for God. The helmet also guarded the mind. We are to guard what thoughts we allow to enter our mind. Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

6. SWORD OF SPIRIT

“...and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:” (Ephesians 6:17) This is the Holy Spirit weapon in our hand. It is the same weapon Jesus used against the devil in Matthew 4:1-8 where he constantly said, “It is written...” Colossians 3:16, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” The sword was for close confrontation after arrows had been shot and spears thrown. The sword was double edged. Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Carry it wherever you go! Don’t be caught without your weapon!

DRESS IN THE MORNING

Just as a soldier dresses before battle, so should a Christian put on his armour each morning. Here are some reminders that may be helpful:

LOINS GIRT WITH TRUTH (BELT)

As you put your belt on in the morning, ask God to make you sincere. Determine in your heart to be truthful with yourself and with others. No masks!

BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

As you put on your shirt or blouse for the day, determine to live right. Ask God to help you in areas of weakness. Guard your heart for the day. Watch your emotions. Love the Lord with all your heart. Tell Him so!

FEET SHOD (SHOES)

As you put your shoes on, ask God to make you a peacemaker. Ask Him to give you power as you look for opportunities to witness for Christ.

SHIELD OF TRUTH

Put you Bible in your clothing or purse to have it with you all day. Find Scripture to meditate on all day!

HELMET OF SALVATION

As you comb your hair, reminisce about the day you were saved. Praise God for it. Guard your thoughts. Begin your day with a song to keep depression away.

THE TRIP

Before you leave the house for the day, remember you are a soldier. There is a warfare to face. Do not be surprised or dicouraged over problems during the day!

Sources:
Zondervan Pictorial Bible Dictionary (Zondervan)

Scripture verses are from the King James Holy Bible.
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