The Armour of God - the Real Enemy
Ephesians 6:10-18 Matthew 14:22-33 1 Samuel 17 Isaiah 50:8
I have heard his letter to the Ephesians described as the jewel in the crown of all the letters written by the Apostle Paul. The letter begins with the assurance that we are predestined to be adopted into the family of God, the most precious declaration. This is the foundation for what is to come later on, in chapter 6. We must have that absolute assurance in order to fully understand what Paul wants us to learn about the warfare that is all around us and how we are able to live in Christ’s victory.
I love reminding myself just how much blessing and power there is in the amazing Armour of God described by Paul, but. just as importantly, I need to remind myself of exactly who my enemy is.
When things go wrong it is very easy to focus on the issue, to try and reason out what you may have done to have caused the issue, or possibly not done. When Jesus came walking on the stormy sea toward the boat with the disciples, Peter showed such courage in stepping out of the boat, but that courage evaporated when he saw that the sea was tempestuous. But, it wasn’t the stormy sea that was his enemy, it was the voice of doubt that spoke to him, telling him he was going to drown. The same voice that planted doubt in Eve’s mind way back in the Garden of Eden. The same voice that lies to us, telling us that the problem is our spouse, or our co-worker, or the traffic jam, or the fridge that breaks down. When the problem really is that we listen to that voice and become totally involved in recrimination, or anger, or frustration.
Paul tells us that our warfare is not with the physical but with spiritual forces. He tells us that the whole reason we need to know we are clad in the Armour of God is so that we can stand against the schemes of the devil. It is vital that we truly understand and grasp this.
The devil schemes and plots against God’s children, doing all he can to trip us up, to get us to falter in the path that Christ has put before us. It’s one thing for someone to hurt you or upset you unintentionally, it is quite another to know that the hurt and upset has been meticulously planned, the timing worked out to the last second. This is what the enemy does. And we will not be able to stand against these schemes in our own strength.
King Saul offered the young David his armour, the king’s armour. Precision made, crafted to provide the best protection man’s skill could offer. What did David do? He rejected the man-made armour, declaring to the Philistine champion Goliath “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.”
David knew that the battle was God’s, that his role in this drama was to stand, protected and victorious in the Name of the Lord of Hosts. Just as our role in the dramas played out in our lives is to stand, robed in the revelation of the Victorious Risen Christ, dressed in the impenetrable Armour of God.
Prayer: Father God, let us with the prophet Isaiah proclaim and believe these words, knowing that we stand in the victory You bought with the blood of Your Son, wearing Your Armour, protected and safe from the schemes and evil plans of our real adversary, the devil himself. “He is near who justifies Me; Who will contend with Me? Let us stand together. Who is My adversary? Let him come near Me.