Putting on the Armor Lesson 1
10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Ephesians 6: 10-18
During this study we will look at each verse and analyze not just what it means but how other Biblical teachings support it.
Ephesians 6: 10-11
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.
First, Lets look at other scriptures written by Paul:
Galatians 3:26 - "You are all the sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus,"
Written between 51-57 AD.
Romans 13:12-14 - "The night is nearly over, the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytims, ot in orgies, and drunkenness, not in sexual imorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, cloth yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature."
Written arount 57 AD before his first imprisonment in Rome. He was in or around Corinth.
2 Timothy 1:7 - "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline."
Written around 66/67 AD when Paul was imprisioned by Nero. The first time he had guest quarters this time he was in a cold, dark, dank cell.
Thought to Ponder:
Pauls attitude and beliefs did not change with his circumstances - Would you be able to maintain you belief in Jesus Christ under the same conditions?
Even though Paul was constantly being criticized and oppressed for this faith, he still held firm to it. Rather than circummin to the worlds criticizum, he chose to write letters to all believers. These letters would serve to teach Christians about the stuggles that we as Christians have to overcome and to give us insight as to how we are to go about overcomming the onslaught of evil.
Ephesians 6: 12
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
The above verse says that our struggles on Earth are not against flesh and blood but against the powers of this dark world and against evil spiritual forces in heavenly realms.
Thought to Ponder:
Has it occurred to you that the Earth is ruled by Satan and his angels?
Revelations 12: 7-9 is clear that the Earth is under the control of Satan:
"And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and the lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down - that ancient serpent called the devil, of Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to earth, and his angels with him."
Thought to Ponder:
Have you recognized that there were evil spiritual forces in heavenly realms and that they were controlling areas on Earth?
Lets take a look at the following scriptures which give an indication that we do not stand alone but more importantly highlight that there are evil "princes" controling portions of our world:
Daniel 12:1, "At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people - everyone whose name is found written in the bood - will be delivered.
Daniel 12: 5-6, "I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of finest gold around his waist. His body was like chrysolite, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.
Daniel 10: 12-13, "Then he continued, 'do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the firs day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. The Michael, one of the chief princes came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia."
Daniel 10: 20, "So he said, 'Do you know why I have come to you? Soon I will return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I go, the prince of Greece will come;"
Thought to Ponder:
The Bible talks about the prince of the Persian Kindgom - do we see evidence in our world today that Satan or his angels may be controlling certain cities?
How about Hollywood? Could you consider it Hellenistic (Paganism) as it worships the body?
How about San Francisco? They accept any sexual preference.
How about New York? Is Wall Street the center for greed and love of money?
Lets take a closer look at Ephesians 6:12 which begins "For our struggle..." Satan battles for your soul - he wants to destroy the light. 2 Corinthians 11: 3-4 reafirms this as it states "But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from you sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.
In 2 Corinthians 11: 3-4 Paul refers to a "different spirit." Jesus taught compassion, love, joy, peace, etc., so a "different spirit" would refer to a spirit of bondage, fear, jealousy, greed - those things opposite from what Jesus taught.
Thought to Ponder
What are the kinds of things in today's world that would quality as being of a different spirit?
Bondage - Debt?
Fear - Economy, Terrorism
Worldly things - Keeping up with the Jonses?
How might this "different spirit" be applied to the church?
Bondage - Religious Form or Tradition without exception
Fear - you are unworthy, unable to be saved unless you conform to religious standards
Wordly things - posting of tithing amounts, expansion without need.
How do we know what Jesus preached?
Most people rely on what they are taught in churches on Sunday morning
What does the Bible have to say about teachings occuring in some churches?
2 Corinthians 11: 13-16
"For such men are false apostles, decietful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. An no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve."
The only way we will know if we are going to a church that teaches the gospel of Jesus Christ is to crack the book and study the Bible. Otherwise, we could distrust or loose confidence in our strength in Christ and we will not develope a personal relationship with Christ. Basicly, if we don't understand his teachings we are unprepared to go into battle and, thereby, give Satan the advantage.
What does the Bible say about battling with Satan?
2 Corinthians 10: 3-4
"For through we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they are divine power to demolish strongholds."
So lets look at how soldiers are trained:
1. They are conditioned physically, mentally, and emotionally to fight.
2. They learn and develop discipline.
3. They learn and develop teamwork.
4. They are trained in the use of armor.
5. They are trained in the use of their weapons.
6. They are trained in battle tactics.
Thought to Ponder:
As a Christian have you been adequately trained?
Click here "The Belt of Truth" for lesson 2