How to Be Victorious in Spiritual Warfare, Part 6 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #58)

spiritual-warfare

A series of homilies on Ephesians 5 & 6

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians 5 & 6 (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

Ephesians 6:10-16:

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

12 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.

13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

—-

Alistair Begg said, “Do not turn your back like a coward. Follow boldly in your Master’s steps, for He has made this rough journey before you. Better a brief warfare and eternal rest than false peace and everlasting torment.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “Some women will spend thirty minutes to an hour preparing for church externally (putting on special clothes and makeup, etc.). What would happen if we all spent the same amount of time preparing internally for the church – with prayer and meditation?”

—-

Today, we are going to look at the second part of the Christian’s armor — the breastplate of righteousness. After we have put on the belt of truth, the Bible says, “and having on the breastplate of righteousness.” A breastplate is a large piece of armor that covers the front of the body from the chest to the waist.

For the Roman soldiers of Paul’s day, the breastplate provided protection for the torso, which contains the vital organs including the heart and the lungs. Without his breastplate, a soldier would be asking for death, as any injury to his body could become fatal. With a strong breastplate, however, the same blows from the enemy are rendered ineffective.

This passage calls righteousness our breastplate. There are two elements of righteousness that make up this piece of defensive armor. The first is found in the basic definition of righteousness — that is right doing or right living — doing the right thing. If we are living in sin, it is as if we are going into battle without any of our armor on. We are exposed to Satanic attack and trickery. Unconfessed sin in our lives is one of the main reasons why Christians are defeated spiritually. So, if we are not living right, we have not put on the breastplate of righteousness.

The second element of righteousness is walking in the confidence that we are clothed in the righteousness of Jesus Christ. By His death on the cross, and our acceptance of that sacrifice, God imputed the righteousness of Jesus Christ to us. God no longer sees us as sinners, but as saints. We are viewed as innocent before God because we are clothed in the righteousness of Jesus Christ. Paul writes in Philippians 3, “not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.”

John Gill said, “the righteousness of Christ, which being imputed by God, and received by faith, is a guard against, and repels the accusations and charges of Satan, and is a security from all wrath and condemnation.”

The devil will try to attack us mentally by bringing up our old sins, failures, and faults. He will try to make us believe that God has not forgiven us and that we are still just like we were before we accepted salvation through Jesus Christ. If we succumb to the devil’s lies, and fail to cling to the truth of God’s Word — that we are righteous because of Jesus Christ — we will lose many spiritual battles.

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