Truth Seekers Ministries Presents...
Putting on the Whole Armor of God
Ephesians 6;10-18: "Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore, take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having the breastplate of righteousness: And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God; Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.."
This letter is somewhat of a continuation of my last letter on the Parable of the Sower. I ended that letter, with an admonishment to recognize that there are indeed spiritual beings, forces of evil, in the air about us. These are fallen angels, who rebelled with Lucifer, before Adam was created, and subsequently became Satan... and then there are demons. The fallen angels were kicked out of heaven. Some of these angels mated with women of the earth, creating giants. (Genesis 6) Their purpose in doing this was to infiltrate and destroy the blood line that the Savior would come. Satan knew very well, the prophesy about himself and descendant of Eve, bringing about his downfall. The angels that committed this grave act are now locked up awaiting judgment. (Book of Enoch) Their offspring, the Nephilim, the Giants, also being of an eternal nature, were killed off during the flood of Noah. After the flood, more angels also came and mated with women, creating other giants, of which Goliath, and Og, are mentioned in the bible. Satan kept trying to degrade and destroy that pure blood line of Eve, that the Savior of the World would be born into. These giants were finally killed off by Israel under David, but the spirits of these beings, and the ones created before the flood, their souls or that eternal part of their being, lived on after their death, just as we have that eternal nature in us. These are most likely what makes up the Demons that exist now, and are in league with or at least working for Satan. The demons are disembodied spirits, who seem to need to have a body of a human or animal, and sometimes even objects, to be able to operate in, against or upon. There is only one Devil, and that is Satan, but there are a great many demons that work for that devil. By the way, Devil means "Adversary", and that is what Satan does. He is our adversary, and he sets his forces arrayed against the called ones of God, trying to take as many down with him as he can. These demonic beings, as a general rule, always work in a "Covert" manner, so people don't see them for what they are. They work through circumstances and events in peoples lives, rather than in the more obvious, direct interaction with us, like possessions, or other types of supernatural occurrences... poltergeists, etc. That kind of interaction would make people know that they exist... and by deduction therefore, God also. So they tend to stay away from direct contact. They do however, on occasion, work in a more obvious manner and there are many people who have encountered these beings behaving in overt manners. I can personally attest to a physical attack on myself, by an invisible, yet powerful and extremely heavy evil force, trying to suffocate me while screaming in my head and keeping me immobilized. Here's the truth, there is "Power" in the name of Jesus. Use that name, anytime you feel threatened. If you can't speak it, whisper it, if you can't whisper it, then you think it as loudly as you can. Demons must flee from you at the use of the mighty name of our Lord. Call him Jesus or Yeshua... it matters not. The evil forces around us know who we are calling on, and they cringe. There are also heavenly angels in the air about us, working for God. They are also here for our service and use at times. They respond to the Word of God being used by us in faith. We can send them out and against our foes, as we ask God to use them in our defense.
Most people don't think about these beings, and many people that even claim to be Christian, do not believe that they exist at all. The scriptures, however, paint an entirely different picture. Every where you turn, there are angelic encounters with mankind. And if we are to believe in this God and Savior of ours, then we need to start treating them as if we believe them, and accept as true what we are being told by them, including the angels, both good and evil, and the demons to boot.
Know this truth..., the moment you claimed Christ as your Lord and asked Him to come and live in you through the Holy Spirit, you were targeted. It may even be, that if you are one of the called of God, one that is destined to be able to receive the things of God, then you were born with this mark already on you. You now have a bulls eye painted on your back, which immediately causes the forces of evil on this earth to array themselves against you. If your preacher or teacher tells you, that the moment you get saved, that your life is going to be all roses; sugar and spice and everything nice, I'm afraid that they do not know scripture well, and indeed are misleading you, whether their intentions are good or not. If you are not a called one of God, then Satan will leave you alone. He'd rather not mess with a good thing, he already has you. He could care less about you, and you can even have a wonderful, fairly trouble free life. However what value, can one lifetime of ease, followed by, a total and eternal separation from God, have in comparison to one lifetime of toil, hardships, and suffering, followed by an eternity of bliss with our Lord. There may be isolated times that God will put a hedge around someone, and not let the evil come against them... at least as strongly as they would have. He does this for various reasons, normally to get something done that He wants accomplished. But as a rule, for most of us, this is going to be a battle, a true spiritual battle against forces of evil sent against us. Are you ready? Am I ready? What can we do to prepare and defend ourselves against these attacks? That, my friend, is what this letter is truly about. To encourage, strengthen, and help you prepare for the onslaught of evil that is now increasing all over the world against anyone who claims to be Christian.
"Cheer up Saints,... it's going to get worse.." Dr. Gene Scott
In my last letter, I spoke of the fact that some are called, and some are not. Concerning the called ones, there are many who are called, but only a few of the called ones, will be chosen. So what is the criteria for the chosen of God to be chosen out of the called ones? It's all about your faith walk and commitment. The chosen can hear and see the things of God, they will absorb the Word, and apply it in their lives. They keep their Lord first in their hearts, above everything else. That means family, friends, jobs, possessions, and everything else people treasure, must come second to where they place Jesus in their hearts. They don't let the things of this earth worry them, or when worries come, they turn them over to their Lord for Him to handle. They are not ruled by the desires of this world. Not that they don't have desires, or that it is not ok to have "things" in this world. However, they always place everything under the position that they put Christ in their heart. They are not ruled by the love of money. Not that it is not ok to have money, but that too, they place under Christ, and are not bothered, but they are joyful, when prompted by their Spirit to give.
Wow... it seems that being a chosen one of God carries with it great responsibility... Right!! Does that mean that I have to be perfect, and make no mistakes? Of course not. There is none righteous, no not one. We all, like sheep, have gone our own way. We all make wrong choices, that's called "Iniquity". The difference in the chosen few, and the rest of the called ones of God, is that the chosen will regularly repent, and consistently turn back to God. They desire to be like their Lord and strive to make their lives one that He would be proud of. They will pray regularly, and keep that line of faith open all day. The rest of the called ones, tend to live in the world, and be of the world. They place high in their priorities, even above Christ, the things that the worldly care about. The Chosen Few have eternity in their hearts, and nothing of this earth, compares to the love they have for their Lord. They hold on to nothing of this world tightly, knowing that God is in control, He can give and take as He chooses. They will trust Him completely, to cause everything to work out. Do you not believe that God wants to be involved in your life, and that the only requirement He asks, is that we trust in Him? Don't worry about not being perfect, or of the sins you commit daily. For simple trust, you can place all your short failings, under the blood of Christ. What God will do for you, as you daily walk in Faith, is that He will change your nature. He will write His laws on your heart, and you will find yourself, not just fulfilling God's Law as it is written, but you will fulfill the "Spirit of the Law", which is what Jesus did, Remember, your thoughts are as bad as the deed itself. Now, since my sins are all covered, does that mean that I can go out and willfully live in sin, and then just go repent anytime, and everything will be ok? Don't be foolish. God is a gracious and patient God, but He is also just, and while repentance is available to you, repentance means to turn from, to. You turn from your sin, and get back in line with God's plan. Take your call seriously, striving to be like your Lord, and when you fail... repent. As you grow in Christ, and walk in faith daily, you will find yourself changed though, and the things you once couldn't stop doing, will become things in your life that you no longer desire to do. Don't get discouraged when you do fail either, because you will, and so will I. Satan loves to discourage you and make you feel unworthy. The truth is, you are unworthy... so am I, and so is everyone else. Satan will make you feel that you just can't do it, that you will always fail. These negative thoughts are straight from the pit of hell. Don't give Satan an ear. When he starts lying to you, recognize where those thoughts are coming from, and kick his ass back into the shadows, where he belongs.
I ended my last letter, talking about our fight against the forces of Hell that are arrayed against us. Now, what I want to do, is to go over the verses again, but also embody the command for the Saints to put on the Whole Armor of God. As we look at this, I want you to visualize putting this armor on, and recognize what each piece of Armor does, and how to apply that in your own life, so that when these attacks come, and they will come, if you are in Christ, you will then have the resources, already "built in" to your spiritual life, in order for you to defeat Satan and his minions, deflecting his blows as they come at you. Jesus told us to take up our cross daily. Meaning, that there are things that you and only you can do, to help advance the kingdom of Christ. No one else can do what you can do. God has you where you are, and has given you the abilities that you have, for you to use them to help advance the kingdom of Christ. Jesus did what He could do, going to the cross, to pay the sin debt for all the Adamites. Now, we have to do our part. Soldiers, being sent out to battle, must prepare and suit up for the battle. If you think that "spiritually" putting on the whole armor of God, is something you don't need to do, or you are embarrassed by it, then you are opening yourself up to more severe attacks than you would if you just cooperated with your commander in chief, and prepared yourself daily. It doesn't take long to do this, you can do it privately, in about five minutes in the morning, the earlier the better. If you forget, then do it as soon as you can, in your car, the bathroom, anywhere. Please don't think that I've somehow mastered this, and should be an example of what Christians should do. Far from it. I have performed this ritual at times, but it wasn't regular. I will pledge you this though, I will incorporate this into my daily routine. I charge you to do this as well. I also know, that as we faithe in this, just as we can in communion, Jesus will honor our act of faith, and as we take this armor on ourselves, we will receive the results stated in the Word of God or else the Word of God won't stand the test, and I'm really not too worried about that happening.
"Stand therefore, having your Loins girt about with Truth"
This is the first thing we put on, the "Belt of Truth". Pledge to yourself, to "always seek truth" and to "always speak truth" in everything you do and everywhere you go. Place that belt on you, just do this as you are putting your own belt on, or imagine wrapping yourself with it, with the truth filter of God. Asking God as you do this to guide you unto all truth, to help you to speak truth always, and to be able to discern truth in others. Satan is called the "Father of Lies", and lies and deception are his modus operandi, his method of operation. Wearing this "Belt of Truth", which uses the Holy Spirit, and by holding everything up to the Word of God, and the discernment of our Spirit, we can guard ourselves against the deceptions that are flung our way and against those that we are tempted to use our self. Throw out the traditions of the church that are not truth, such as Easter and Christmas, and start teaching the true story about these events, and what exactly we should be looking at and observing during these "Feasts" of the Lord. If your teachers won't teach you truth, then find another. Read my other letters for more info on those subjects, if you like. At the least, pledge to yourself, that whenever you learn something that you feel is true, and in your inmost being, your loins, you've filtered it with your Spirit which confirms it's truthfulness, and you've tested it with the Word of God, then incorporate that knowledge into your overall thought processes and feelings. Your Holy Spirit, which is truly who the Belt of Truth works with, will guide you unto all truth, it will protect your way, and it will guide your path.
"..and having the Breastplate of Righteousness"
This "Breastplate of Righteousness", is extremely important, for it covers the vital organs of the body, the heart and lungs. Our heart is susceptible to the wickedness and the influences of the world, and if not protected, can turn your good soil into bad soil. We put this breastplate on to ward off the attacks. So..what does that mean to "Put on" this "Righteousness"? Is this where I have to live a sin free life? Or stop having fun? First, this act has nothing to do with you. All of our "Righteousness" is nothing but filthy rags to God. We, in no way could ever be truly "Righteous". We do however have an advocate. Our Lord Jesus Christ, who lived a truly Righteous life, and died as a payment for my sins and yours. When we have Jesus in our heart, and God looks at us, he sees us justified. Meaning He sees us, "Just Like" Christ. God puts on the "Spectacles of Christ", as Dr. Scott would put it, and sees us already in Christ, despite our sinful nature, and our short fallings we experience daily. When we put on this breastplate of righteousness, we are literally putting on the "Righteousness of Christ". I want you to visualize, taking this breastplate, symbolizing Jesus perfect life, unto yourself. Slide it over your head, for you know in your mind, whom you believe, over your shoulders, for you are rolling off your burdens onto Him, and onto your chest, for you know that it is the righteousness of Christ, and that alone, that saves you, and provides for your eternal future. Now... go out and live your day as if He is actually there with you, knowing that HE IS, ever with you, and He stays with you because you renew your commitment and oneness with Him daily.
"And your feet shod with the preparation of the Gospel of Peace..."
Without shoes, fighting a battle with Satan, would truly be a difficult task. The devil will put out traps and snares, stumbling blocks and pitfalls, to catch us in, however with the "Gospel of Peace" as your shoes, you can crush the obstacles Satan puts out for you. "Thy shoes shall be iron and brass", We have tough shoes for a tough trip. In 1st Peter, he says that we should always be ready to give and account for the hope in which we have. This is having the Gospel of Peace at your ready, every step you take in this world, you are to be ready to give an account of your faith. You know that it is by God's Grace, and that by the grace of God alone, are we are a part of this army, the body of Christ. Peace means "Cessation of Against-ness" Through Christ, God ceases to be against you, allowing you to return to Him. You take every step now, in the knowledge that God's Grace will see you through the pitfalls of the way. If He is allowing this, then He will protect your steps. Visualize putting these shoes on, as you are putting your shoes on in the morning. Visualize you, readying yourself with the Gospel, preparing to give an account to anyone who asks of you, of the Hope you have in Christ.
"Above all, taking the Shield of Faith wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked..."
Without Faith, it is impossible to please God. God rewards people for their faith. Hebrews 11, the heroes of faith chapter, has people just like us, with problems and sins. They are all included in this chapter, not because of their good lives, or their works, but because of their "Faith". They believed God, and lived and acted accordingly. What God wants from us, is for us to believe that "HE IS", and to live our lives every day, like we believe and trust in Him. God is a reward-er of those who diligently seek Him. Seeking Him shows our faith and commitment, and God says that if we "Turn to Him, He turns to us". We must seek our Lord Jesus, the Head of this Army, for we are His body. And as we put our faith in His completed work, we know He will save us. Pick up your shield, knowing that God has provided this, to protect you in your walk. Ignoring the facts that may state otherwise, we take this "Shield of Faith" holding it high, knowing God worketh, and we can block all the spears, swords, arrows and darts of the enemy. Faith, our Hope, and Doubt are always at war with each other, and Satan will always throw arrows of doubt at us, to test our faith, especially when God doesn't respond as quickly as we would have Him. But we know whom we serve, and we know that He will come, and we can proudly hold that Shield high, guarding our heads (our thoughts) and our hearts (our emotions) from the onslaught of the devil. Keep that Shield ever with you, resist the devil and his taunts, and he must flee.
"And take the helmet of salvation...,"
The Helmet of Salvation, protects the head. It protects your knowledge and your thoughts. The truth of Salvation through Jesus Christ, truly sets us free. Jesus says, that "if you hold to His teaching, then you are really His disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.." When anyone asks me, how they should read the bible, I always tell them to "Read the Red" first. Read every word Jesus spoke, drill them into your being, get to know the Lord you are serving. Then worry about the rest of the Bible. Your Salvation, through Christ, becomes very personal and powerful, as you dwell on His words. Take that knowledge, visualize yourself placing that helmet, symbolizing the salvation you have in Christ, on your head. You are In Christ, You are to have the Mind of Christ. You have been covered by the blood. You are eternally secure, and the fear of death truly no longer has a hold on you. Taking that knowledge, and applying it daily in your lives, keeps your thoughts and your mind, protected from the attacks of the evil one.
"..and the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.."
This Sword of the Spirit, is our only offensive weapon. All the other pieces of your armor are defensive, and are used to deflect the blows, and protect us from the attacks of Satan. With this weapon, we can fight an offensive battle. We can use the Word of God, claiming promises as our own, for "all the promises of God, in Him (Christ), are yea and amen" (So be it unto you). If you are in Christ, then you can claim any promise of God. The Word of God, is truly powerful, and if believers use the Word of God, in Faith, then that Word will not come back void. It will perform what it is intended to. People, we need to arm ourselves, and not just physically. We need to read the Word of God daily, filling our minds with it. You may not be able to recall the exact passage location, I can't even do that. But we know what it says, and we can make the statement, "As it is written...", and claim the promise we need. Send out the Word of Faith, to thwart the wiles of the devil and his minions. Pick up your Sword, and prepare yourself to start using it throughout your day and the rest of your life. People will be amazed, when God starts performing, just because of a word of Faith spoken by a Saint of God. By the way, all Christians, who have given themselves to their Lord, are indeed Saints. They have "Sainted" themselves on the altar of God. You have the absolute right to use the Word of God. He wants us to use it, and He is eagerly awaiting our use of it, so that He can respond.
"..always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.."
Most people teaching on the Armor of God, leave out this part. Yet prayer is an integral and necessary part of this faith act and should be a regular part of the life of any called one of God. As you are visualizing placing the pieces of armor on, you are praying to God. We have to check in to our command center at first light. Yes Lord, I'm here, I'm awake, just checking in... what are your orders for today sir? Yes sir, I'll suit up now...etc". I love the way Dr. Scott talked about how he and God would talk. He would sometimes put an empty chair in front of him, and speak to God, the invisible person sitting in front of him, just like He was sitting there, and then Scott would just lay it out like it is, knowing that God is listening. People, we need to treat God as if He is, and the best way to do that is to talk to Him. Talk to Him often, about anything and everything. You don't even have to speak out loud to be heard. He knows your thoughts. Other than saying Grace, or maybe uniting in prayer for a sick soul, say your prayers in private, for God rewards certain things which are done in secret, and not outwardly, prayer being one. Your words a plenty and public prayers, to be seen of men, have their own reward. We are to live in a continual prayer state of mind, having that line of communication open to your Commander in Chief. That is the least any decent soldier can do. Unlike mans army, in God's army, the lines of communication are perfect, instant, and never fail. We must endure this battle fellow Saint, keeping our prayer life going, through to the end, and always being ready to offer up supplications for our brothers and sisters in the Lord. Yes, don't forget to pray for others as well as yourself.
"Wherefore, take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand..."
This is what God truly desires for us to be able to do in this life. To be able to "Stand Alone, Lacking Nothing". God is equipping the Saints for battle, and He gives us the necessary elements to be able to stand for our faith. If you are a called one of God, then you are in this battle, whether or not you equip yourself for the task. I know that life is tough, and that problems arise, but our Lord is greater than any problem we can face. Treat Him like He is, and you may just start seeing Him work wonders in your life. What better commander can we have than Jesus, and even if it cost us our physical lives, in service of the Kingdom, what less should we be willing to offer to Him. We are secure in our future, knowing in whom we serve, and the Gates of Hell will not prevail over us as we walk in Christ. As you see God working in your life, share this with others, so that they may also reap the benefits of arming themselves against the spiritual influences that come against us.
A soldier has to prepare himself daily. He has to keep his armor clean, and repaired. Just so should the Christian keep himself prepared, putting on the Whole Armor of God daily, and throughout the day tending to any chinks in their armor, for through small defects in our armor, Satan will gain access. Remember, we are strong in the Lord, and in the Power of His Might. Now, if you choose to not do this, does that mean that you fail God in some way? We'll probably not, but you are failing yourself, and living beneath your abilities. If you're going to be a Christian, then be one. Keep that prayer line open to God, keep Christ foremost in your heart, and the Word of God at your mouth ready to be used; and lets fight this battle, worthy of the one who is the supreme ruler of the universe, the Lord Jesus Christ.
With Love in Christ,
Patrick Robinson, Minister
Truth Seekers Ministries