The whole armor of God
VIDEO: Here’s a look at the whole armor of God and how we can use it in our lives!
What is the whole armor of God that Paul writes about in Ephesians 6? He uses terms like “the breastplate of righteousness” and “the sword of the Spirit,” but what does that really mean? These things are actually incredibly relevant for our everyday lives as Christians! Here’s a look at what they are and how we can use them.
Audio Transcript: The whole armor of God
In Ephesians 6 we read about how important it is to put on the whole armor of God. This is what a disciple needs to be clothed with in order to stand against the wiles of the devil. Just like physical armor, the armor of God is made up of different parts:
“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth …” Ephesians 6:14.
The truth has two parts. To love and acknowledge the truth about my human nature as the Holy Spirit points it out to me, because only when I see it can I be transformed from things like selfishness or arrogance. The other part is to speak only truth. Lying makes me vulnerable and leaves me open for attack. If I lie to protect my reputation or “save my skin,” this puts holes in my armor.
“… having put on the breastplate of righteousness …” Ephesians 6:14.
Righteousness is the result of faithfully obeying Jesus’ commandments and will for my life. When I practice righteousness in small and big things, this protects me like a breastplate from the darts of my enemy. Small acts of unrighteousness are like holes through which Satan can sneak in and accuse me and get a hold of me.
“… having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace …” Ephesians 6:15.
The gospel of peace is instruction on how to come to peace from sin. Jesus’ peace is gained through battle against sin, in which the lusts and desires of the flesh are defeated.
This battle can be for personal peace against my own lusts and desires, or it can be a battle to spread this gospel of peace to the world. Both of these things can only be accomplished through battling against “principalities, powers, the rulers of the darkness of this age, and spiritual hosts of wickedness.” (Ephesians 6:12.) To fight this spiritual battle, I need to be prepared with the mind of Christ, which is the attitude of being willing to be obedient to do God’s will, whatever it takes.
“… above all, taking the shield of faith …” Ephesians 6:16.
With this shield of faith, I can deflect all of Satan’s efforts to persuade me to doubt, to give up, to discouragement, to disobedience and to sin. When I believe in God and His promises and walk in obedience to the faith, then this shield will always protect me. When I go forward with boldness and courage regardless of how I feel or what I am tempted to, then Satan’s flaming darts simply glance off the shield of faith.
“… take the helmet of salvation …” Ephesians 6:17.
When I believe that the end of my faith will be the salvation of my soul, as Peter writes about, then I will be able to withstand anything the devil tries to throw to shake me from my faith. This hope makes me strong in the Lord, fearless in battle, and able to endure fiery trials and hardships without losing my faith, because I see the end result – my eternal salvation.
“… the sword of the Spirit …” Ephesians 6:17.
The sword of the Spirit is the word of God. (Hebrews 4:12.) It can put whole armies of evil spirits to flight. With this sword we can always be victorious, because the word overcomes, as Jesus taught us when He said, “Get behind Me Satan, for it is written …” I have to own the word – to get to know it inside and out – and then use it to fight against and overcome all flesh. One word of God can stop the enemy in his tracks. The word judges between right and wrong, good and evil, and shows me the truth. If I am obedient to it, then Satan can never lead me astray.
When I have put on the whole armor of God, I become more than a conqueror through Him who loved me!
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 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 …” Ephesians 6:10-18.
For a more in-depth look at each of the individual pieces of the armor listen to our podcast series about the whole armor of God: