In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:16-17
Paul’s picture is one of a Roman soldier, and the armor that he would wear. We’ve already looked at the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness and the shoes of peace. Today we’ll look at the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit to be battle ready.
The shield of faith is there to extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one, Satan. I did an Awana council time on this from the theme night “Bean Bag Barrage.” I had a bigger metal garbage can lid, and I had given about 50 bean bags to kids and adults in the audience. On cue they pelted them at me, while I fended them off with my trusty lid. You could hear the “zings” but not one hit me. That was a pretty good picture of what Paul was talking about.
There are plenty of faith verses we can call out when under attack, like “I will never leave you or forsake you,” Hebrews 13:5; “God is my refuge and strength in trouble, a very present help in trouble, therefore we will not fear,” Psalm 46:1-2; “The name of the Lord is a strong tower. The righteous run into it and are saved,” Proverbs 18:10. Know them by heart, call them out and stand with the strength that God provides.
The helmet of salvation is to guard our heads and our minds. We can relate to that, as we are a helmet society (not like when I was a kid). In Proverbs it talks about guarding our hearts, but we also need to guard our minds. Don’t subject yourself to garbage on TV and the computer, or even Facebook. Shut it off. Our thoughts need to be kept in line with the holy life that God wants for us, so even being around certain people might have to be on the “no” list. Immerse yourself in the Word so that you won’t be deceived and tossed around by every wind of doctrine.
Next we have the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. It is the only offensive weapon that we have, outside of prayer. Hebrews 4:12 says that “the Word is living and active, sharper than any two edged sword…” We use it by quoting it to ourselves, out loud to Satan (“Resist the devil and he will flee from you, James 4:7), and filling our prayers and talk with Scripture. Corrie Ten Boom was talking to an evangelist in India who said he wasn’t seeing many people come to the Lord. She asked him if he was wielding his sword, meaning ‘was he using Scripture in his messages.’ He thought and said that he really wasn’t. About a year later she saw him again and he quickly told her how he went back to using more Scripture and how people were coming to the faith. My husband calls that out to me every time I leave to go do jail ministry, “Go wield your sword.”
I pray through the armor when I feel the battle closing in. I also call out loud, “Satan I resist you in the name of Jesus. Leave me alone.” We have a defense, the armor of God. Now use it!