From Ephesians 4-6
This post is part of my bible in a year series.
Passage and Comments
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. (Eph 6:10-12)
Paul speaks about a present enemy, a darkness. The struggle all believers need to stand together against is not against flesh and blood.
But against the cosmic powers and the spiritual forces of evil.
Is that hard to believe? Paul thinks it is true, behind opposition to the gospel is an evil power that does not want Jesus Christ to be proclaimed. It might work existing powers as Paul has mentioned, but behind it all is something worse.
13 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 firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, (Eph 6:13-17)
I’ve divided up the descriptions;
Belt – Breastplate – Shoes – Shield – Helmet – Sword
This is the typical armour of the Roman soldier. All parts of the body are protected. In addition, a weapon was given to strike back.
However, the strength of the typical Roman soldier was not in these things.
Their strength was in the brothers who stood with them in battle. Side by side. Forming a phalanx.
The Romans stood and fought together, they protected one another. A group of Romans fighting together with all this equipment was stronger than the same number of individuals. This is Paul’s point.
Truth – Righteousness – Readiness – Faith – Salvation – Word of God
This is the true armour and weapons of God’s people.
Honesty and sincerity have marked the apostles as they have preached the gospel to unbelievers. In part they have been won over by their integrity and their message.
Righteousness is good and lawful behaviour.
God’s people are to be recognised by their faith in Jesus and their good works. Speaking of the gospel God’s people need to be ready to give an account of what they believe and what God has done for them. Faith is one of the three greatest gifts. There are always trials and temptations in this world, and it is by faith God’s people persevere.
God’s people should always remember that they have been saved (Eph 2.8-9), he is saving them (1 Cor 15.2) will save them in the future (Rom 10.9-10).
The only weapon God’s people are given is all they will ever need. God’s word. Primarily I think Paul is referring to the gospel, but I would also open it up to all the words of God. We know these in the scriptures. God’s people don’t throw books at people either. They speak, we fight with out mouths as we evangelise, prophecy and teach.
18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak. (Eph 6:18–20)
We need to keep praying, Paul says at all times. We need to stay sober and clear headed in our prayers. Pray for others. They need it. Pray also for evangelists, that they may find opportunity to share the gospel and that God by his Spirit will work in peoples minds and hearts so they may believe Jesus is their Saviour and King.
Copyright © Joshua Washington and thescripturesays, 2014. All Rights Reserved.