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I want to continue our look into spiritual warfare by considering the weapons available to us as believers. We are in a daily battle against a very real enemy, but many fail to utilize the weapons God has provided or are unaware of them altogether.

Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 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.

Ephesians 6:13–17

Every soldier involved in combat must possess a comprehensive knowledge of the weapons of their warfare. In the passage above, Paul paints for us a picture of a Roman soldier fully dressed for battle, and he uses that picture to explain the various pieces that make up the whole armor of God. Rather than getting preoccupied with the type of armor that was used by the ancient Romans, we want to concentrate on the message behind the analogy. What exactly is the armor of God?

The armor of God is the eternal truth of God found in the Scriptures. To put on the armor is to apply biblical truth to our lives. Each piece of the armor represents a different aspect of that truth. The armor is necessary to protect us from the attacks of the enemy as we seek to live for the glory of God and advance His kingdom. The belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the boots of peace, the shield of faith, and the helmet of salvation are all, for the most part, defensive, enabling us to stand without losing ground. The sword of the Spirit and prayer are our offensive weapons. We will look first at the defensive aspect of the armor, and then later on, we will consider the offensive features of the armor.


The Belt of Truth

The belt is mentioned first because it is the foundational piece of the armor. It gave the soldier mobility and support. For us, it is the belt of truth. The truths of the Word of God are the foundation from which our warfare is waged. To be girded with the truth means to know the truth and believe it. The enemy cannot be withstood by human reason, tradition, personal charisma, or any other carnal means. God’s truth alone must shape our thinking and living.

I’m sure you’ve noticed that we live in a world full of lies. It’s hard to get at the truth today. Do you believe everything you read in the newspapers? I hope not. Unfortunately, for most people truth is not a high priority. Here in the United States we have witnessed a major integrity crisis in the corporate world and among some of our leading politicians, not to mention the day-to-day deceit of one kind or another that we have sadly come to expect. We are actually living in a time when the very concept of truth is being challenged and in some cases openly denied. This makes it all the more important that we as Christians are men and women of truth.

Putting on the belt of truth, then, means knowing THE TRUTH, as well as being ourselves full of integrity. There should be no guile or deceit in us at all.


The Breastplate of Righteousness

Next, we come to the breastplate of righteousness. The breastplate, of course, protected the vital organs— the heart, the lungs, the pancreas, and the liver. The ancients believed this part of the body to be the seat of the emotions. So we speak of sorrow as being “brokenhearted,” or we use the term “bowels of mercy” as a way of describing compassion. Therefore, the breastplate is to protect us in the realm of our emotions. Notice it is the breastplate of righteousness. Satan quite often attacks our emotions in regard to righteousness. We’ve already talked about condemnation— the feeling that God is against us. When condemnation would overwhelm us, an understanding of the doctrine of the imputed righteousness of Christ serves as our first line of defense. That knowledge is obtained through the Scriptures. 

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

2 Corinthians 5:21

He made us accepted in the Beloved.

Ephesians 1:6

[That I may] be found in Him, not having my own righteousness … but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith.

Philippians 3:9

Paul was primarily referring to Christ’s imputed righteousness when he spoke of being clad with the breastplate of righteousness. In another sense, putting on the breastplate of righteousness refers to the practice of righteousness. Holy living makes it a lot more difficult for the devil to trip us up. Living right, doing good, and obeying God’s commands will be a sure protection against the attacks of the enemy.


Used by permission of Brian Brodersen
Spiritual Warfare
Copyright © 2009 by Brian Brodersen

continue reading the views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of Calvary Southampton

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