There are many passages that speak about winning the battle against the enemy, but most notable is probably Ephesians 6, where Paul references what tradition has labeled, “The Armor of God”.
Before he discusses the armor, Paul initially states 3 facts that lay the groundwork for victory:
1) Be strong in the LORD-the strength needed to be victorious comes from Christ, and Him alone.
2) Take a stand against the devil’s schemes-this reiterates what we spoke about last week how the enemy targets, plots, and strategizes in his attempts to trap and ensare us. He knows our weaknesses, and uses them.
3) Our struggle is NOT against flesh and blood-while we may experience difficulty relationally, spiritually, or phsyically, ultimately our fight is with the enemy. He will use circumstances to attempt to severe our relationship with God, but the circumstance aren’t our enemy…the Devil is.
Then Paul moves on to detailing how we protect ourselves from the “schemes” of the devil.
Belt of Truth-believing Jesus is who He says He is, and believing you are who Jesus says you are. Satan is the Father of Lies, while Jesus is the Way, Truth, and Life.
Breastplate of Righteousness-We have been made right with God through Christ. We are not condemned, but rather we have been made conquerors through Christ. Our ability and our standing is not a result of what we have achieved, but instead it rest in Christ and in Him alone. When we chose to take credit for our abilities, we are at our weakest. We are protected when we are dependent on Christ.
Shoes that are fitted for readiness-this type of “readiness” comes from knowing that the gospel has become a reality in our life. The Good News has materialized in us. We sinned and should have died, but Jesus saved us. The Good News brings us peace, wholeness, comfort, and security…all elements necessary to withstanding an attack from the enemy.
Helmet of Salvation-Not only does Jesus save us from death, but he continually saves us from the enemy and his arrows. Jesus rescues us and redeems us constantly.
Shield of Faith-the ability to remain strong despite what you “see”. The enemy wants us to feel hopeless and defeated, but when we raise the shield of faith, we understand that although we may not “see” victory, we know we are guaranteed it.
Sword of the Spirit-Scripture cripples the enemy. That’s why the Psalmist tells us to hide the Word of God in our heart. When we read Scripture and apply it to our life, it possesses the power and authority to defeat the enemy.
The enemy wants us to feel hopeless, God wants us to hope. The enemy wants us to be bitter, God wants us to forgive. The enemy wants us to grieve, God wants us to have joy. The enemy wants us to be anxious, God wants us to have peace. The enemy wants us to be selfish, God wants us to be selfless. The enemy wants us to lust, God wants us to be pure. The enemy wants us to wander, God wants to give us purpose. This is where the warfare lies….the enemy wants to destroy, God wants us to be victorious.
When we clothe ourselves in the Armor of God, we will be victorious against the enemy-all things are possible with Christ.