Dressed for Battle
and having put on the breastplate of righteousness,
and, as shoes for your feet,
having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.
I don't know about you, but I have struggled with the Armor of God...
I've heard sermons about it, been in Bible study discussions about it, heard speakers at retreats teach about it and even used Ephesians 6:15 as the name of a ministry I once had to the Marines, but have never seemed able to grasp the full meaning of the Armor of God and apply it to my life.
But recently, during my quiet time, this verse led into a devotional I was reading that day. Before I even got to the actual devotional reading, the Lord opened my eyes and revealed to me new insights about those verses that put the practical in the Armor of God.
The Belt of Truth
By fully grasping and believing the Truth of God's Word in it's entirety - from who the Lord is as Creator God to Jesus as Lord and Savior to the eternal love of our Good Good Father, Satan's lies will never gain a foothold.
Satan loves to put doubt in our minds about God at every turn, through our relationships, our church family, and doctrinal truth.
He is the sower of discord.
But we have the whole canon of Scripture that reveals to us everything about the Lord and everything about how we as children of God are to serve and Glorify Him.
We need to wear the Belt of Truth with full confidence.
The Breastplate of Righteousness
By remembering who we are in Christ Jesus, loved and set apart, the children He delights in and rejoices over with singing, Satan will never be able to convince us that we are unworthy of God's love and a failure as Christians.
If you're like me, you can fall into the pit of believing that you are not worthy of God's love and ohhh what an undermining lie that is! It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy of thinking, "I'm going to end up sinning anyway, I give up..."
And yes, we will continue to sin this side of Heaven, but that does not in any way strip away the Robe of Righteousness that the Lord has clothed us with by the shedding of His blood.
We need to stop viewing ourselves through the lens of Satan's lies and start seeing ourselves through the loving eyes of God as Holy and Beloved children of the Father.
We must secure the Breastplate of Righteousness with the love of Jesus.
The Shoes of the Gospel of Peace
By daily saturating ourselves in the Truth of God's Word and believing it with our whole heart AND seeing ourselves as God sees us, cleansed of our sin by the blood of His precious Son, we will have put on the shoes of the Gospel of Peace.
If we walk around with attitudes and postures that would indicate we believe anything but this, how can we be effective witnesses of the Gospel of Peace. To those around us, it would seem we are living in torment. There is nothing attractive about that!
And this is the crux of spiritual warfare. Satan will stop at nothing to prevent the Gospel of Peace from going forward which is why it is soo important to dress ourselves for battle.
Our part in battle is so simple really - believing God is who says He is, has finished what He says He has finished and will do what He says He will do.
When we ourselves walk in the Gospel of Peace, those around us will be attracted to our Lord and Savior. We will indeed have readied ourselves to advance His Kingdom.
Maybe this blog post was meant just for me... Maybe this was very clear to the rest of you...
But I was just so taken for the first time by the context of these verses, of the cause and effect ...
In the past, I took these verses as being only about "my own spiritual protection", but now I see them as ultimately indicating that each piece of the armor, "protects the Lord's Gospel of Peace".
May we all guard and protect the Gospel of Peace through our thoughts, attitudes and actions.
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