“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—”
Ephesians 6:14-18 NKJV
Girded, shod, guarded, shielded, helmeted, and armed
The devil is cunning, for he lays traps everywhere in hope of tripping up the unsuspecting follower of Jesus. Some of the traps are obvious, for we are able to see them from a far off, recognizing the danger and choosing rightly, to walk another way. Others are surreptitiously placed, looking harmless from the outside, but are actually demonic IEDs, or improvised explosive devices, placed by the devil waiting to blow up on the Christian who should be walking by.
This walk of faith is an intentional one, for if one is doing what is the calling of the Lord, one will be a target of the evil one, for his desire is to destroy the testimony of the saints. Even now, he stands before the throne of God in Heaven accusing the brethren.
Like he did with Job, the devil stands in the presence of the Lord making a case for permission to attack.
“So Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!””
Job 1:9-11 NKJV
Because of this, it is of grave importance that the follower of Jesus be ever prepared for the time when the devil turns his attention to them, for when that permission is given by the Lord, all hell will bear down on the life of the saint. And God does grant that permission, for what the devil means for evil, the Lord means for good, and all things work out for our betterment.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.”
Romans 8:28-29 NKJV
Where Satan desires to destroy us, the Lord is seeking to form us into the image of His Son Jesus, that we be effective ambassadors, bringing the Gospel to the world. Because attacks are inevitable, the Lord has given us protection, most potent protection as we walk in the Spirit.
We are to be girded with truth in these horrible days, for the world has fallen for lies and desires nothing more than for us to agree with them. We Christians have become as the ones who know that the king is naked, that men are not women, nor women men, and only Jesus saves.
We are girded by the truth found only in God’s word, for we have the written testimony of the Father and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, unchanging, immutable, and complete. There is no need for further revelation.
We must guard our hearts. The breastplate of righteousnesses, the application of the word via the Holy Spirit helps us to set ourselves on the things that are above. It is far better to focus the holy things of God rather than the frivolous things of this world.
“Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.”
Proverbs 4:23 NKJV
We must be shod, for the evil one seeks to attacks us where we are most vulnerable: at our very foundation. Who take out the feet, and biggest and baddest fall. Therefore we must protect our foundation from the attacks, by resting on the only true thing that can be counted on: the Rock that is Christ, or more precisely, the Gospel that has saved our souls.
Lest we forget:
“Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures,”
I Corinthians 15:1-4 NKJV
In our salvation, found only through the grace of God via the death burial and resurrection of Christ, can we find true peace, and the solidity of a faith built on the Rock. When we are solidly planted, we can stand against the evil one and his machinations.
Let us be shielded, holding up the shield faith, a faith based not on our own fleshly preparation, but upon He who goes before us. May our faith in Jehovah Nissi, the Lord our banner, guide and go before us.
In these perilous times we face many flaming darts aimed at our hearts, seeking to bring discouragement and even doubting as to whether our God loves us. But with the shield of faith, we have confidence and can look back at what the Lord has done for us.
Let us take on the helmet of salvation, protecting our minds from the onslaught that the evil one has launched. He is getting desperate for he knows that his time is short. Let us resist the programming of the devil being pumped into this world, and let us instead, be filled with the word of God.
Let us remember we that we have been given the most potent weapon known to humanity: the sword of the Spirit.
“For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
Hebrews 4:12 NKJV
It is the word that has the power to exam us, to show us weaknesses, it is an offensive weapon that has the power to defeat the strangle hold of the devil on a hapless sinner, and the bring that sinner unto salvation.
Brothers and sisters, though we are armed with the greatest protection, let us not be so impervious that we lose sight of our mission. We have been sent into the world as reformed sinners, made into new creatures by Jesus. May we be mindful that those who surround us, some of which are being used by the enemy as weapons against us, are also those that Jesus came to save.
“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
Ephesians 6:11-12 NKJV
Therefore, let us put on the cover of constant prayer as we proceed, that we be guided by the heart of God as we proceed. May it be our primary focus to bring His holy truth, but also bring it in love. The people that we are bringing the message me the Gospel to have been attacked by the devil and have had no protection.
I tell you the truth, the message of the Gospel has become drowned out by our politics. Let us love by the power of God in these perilous times when hate seems to prevail.
“Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.
I Corinthians 13:4-8a NKJV
Have a most joyful Memorial Day holiday weekend!
One thought on “Girded, shod, guarded, shielded, helmeted, and armed”
Oh how wonderful is the “love” of God! Thanks for the great reminder Bernie! Hope your weekend goes better than your week did. I love you brother.
“By this we have known love, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.”
1 John 3:16 LSB