How to Be Victorious in Spiritual Warfare, Part 7 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #59)

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.

—-

Chip Ingram said, “If you are a Christian, you are at war. But our approach to spiritual warfare usually falls into one of two extremes — either we place an undue emphasis on Satan and his powers or we completely ignore the existence of a personal enemy.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “If I were to ask you if you were saved, would you say, ‘Yes, I am saved.’ Are you saved? What are you saved from? Hell? Are you saved from bitterness? Are you saved from lust? Are you saved from cheating? Are you saved from lying? Are you saved from bad manners? Are you saved from rebellion against your parents? Come on, what are you saved from?” For if you are not saved from these sins, you may not be saved from hell.

—-

So far, we have looked at two pieces of the armor which God supplies for the believer.

Today, we are going to look at the third part of the Christian’s armor — the shoes of the gospel of peace. After we have put on the belt of truth and the breastplate of righteousness, we are to put on the shoes of the gospel of peace. The Bible states, “And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.”

You probably don’t think about the importance of the shoes you wear each day. However, for a soldier, shoes are very important. A soldier who goes into war barefoot will be hindered by the rough terrain, pebbles, stones, and other debris on the battlefield. The right kind of footwear enables a soldier to advance against the enemy without encumbrance.

Roman soldiers wore the caliga, a thick-soled, hob-nailed, half-boot which had leather straps that were tied around and fastened tightly to each foot. It was heavily studded with metal nails to give stability in all forms of terrain. It was not strictly a weapon but part of the soldier’s equipment, especially for long, fast-paced marches.

However, for the Christian soldier, his shoes are not just mere protection for his feet. His shoes are built with a purpose. The Christian goes forth not just to fight against the enemy, but to spread the gospel of peace to those bound by the enemy. A Christian who goes forth to make war against Satan is also one who continuously carries forth the message that God has sent Jesus Christ to make peace with man. Thus, to have our feet clothed with the gospel of peace means we must believe the gospel ourselves, and be serious about sharing the gospel with others.

John Piper has pointed out that it is strange that we find a focus on peace in the midst of this passage on war. However, he said, “The aim of our warfare is that people would accept the terms of peace that God holds out, namely, faith in Jesus. And the only reason there is any conflict at all is because the power of sin and the powers of Satan are dead set against [allowing people to] make peace with God.”

If you are not actively seeking out ways you can share the Gospel of peace, you are not fulfilling all of your duty as a Christian. Quoting Isaiah in Romans 10:15, Paul says, “How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” The Greek word for “gospel”, which is where we get our word “evangelist” from, simply means to ‘proclaim good news.’ It was a word used when a messenger ran from the battlefield back to the city to proclaim that the army had been victorious in battle. He was an evangelist bringing back the good news. Likewise, we are ambassadors from Heaven, living in this world, proclaiming the victory of Jesus Christ over sin, death, hell, and the devil.

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