Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Armor of God: Battle Shoes

This is the day that the Lord has made, I will REJOICE and be glad in it. It really is my CHOICE, and I am determined every morning, regardless of how I feel, to REJOICE. I hope you will as well. As we rejoice, let's continue to look at the importance of putting on the "Armor of God." Today, we are looking at BATLE SHOES.

"And your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace" Ephesians 6:15 NIV

I chose to use the term "Battle Shoes" to identify the "readiness" that comes from the gospel of peace. It's important for us to understand exactly what Paul was talking about, so we can fully engage our faith when putting the battle shoes on. The Amplified translation of Ephesians 6:15 is helpful:

"And having shod your feet in preparation [to face the enemy with the firm-footed stability, the promptness, and the readiness produced by the good news] of the Gospel of peace" Ephesians 6:15 AMP

Let's explore the footwear analogy. When going to work, play, exercise or relax we usually put something on our feet that is appropriate. Each type of shoe provides a unique combination of benefits for the activity we're intending to do. Specifically, footwear provides:

  • Protection
  • Support
  • Traction
  • Performance
  • Comfort

Footwear also bolsters our stamina to perform the activity we're going to do. For example, if you are going running on a hot day, you're likely to last only a few minutes on the hot asphalt without shoes. With shoes on, you can run on that asphalt much longer!

The spiritual footwear that comes from the "Gospel of Peace" gives us the firm-footed stability, promptness and readiness we'll need to face our agile adversaries. The term "Gospel of Peace" refers to the peace we have with God through Jesus: "Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we
have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God" (Romans 5:1-2NIV). (Other verses on our peace with God through Christ: Isaiah 53:5, Colossians 1:20, Ephesians 2:13-22)

Since we have gained access to God through this peace, we can use his resources to fight the spiritual battles we face. Therefore, the gospel of peace extends our "battlefield endurance" by connecting us with God's protection, support, guidance and comfort at all times through the Holy Spirit.

Putting on the Battle Shoes

  • Speak It: Even though our faith in Jesus secures our peace with God, we often don't feel that peace. It may even seem like God is not with us. In such times it is helpful to remember that we put the whole armor of God on by faith. Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen
    (Hebrews 11:1). We can't see our peace with God, but we believe we have it because God's word says we have it. When we confess that we are putting on the battle shoes (and the rest of the armor), we are speaking them on in faith. Here is an example prayer/declaration to do so:
    "I shod my feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace. I have peace with God through my faith in Jesus and have access to God. I have his resources at my disposal for the battles I may face today. Father, please guide my footsteps and secure me on your path of righteousness today. Thank you, Father!"

  • Learn God's word: The Bible is the reference book for the Gospel of Peace.
    By studying the Bible and even memorizing key scripture passages, you will establish a foundation in the Gospel of Peace. You will be less likely to slip off God's path of truth. You will be firmly standing in good shoes! The psalmist declared in Psalm 119:165 NKJV, "Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble."
  • Don't be anxious about anything. Take all your needs and concerns to God in prayer: The devil will try to steal our peace, using the cares of the world, the desire for riches, fear and any other tool to get our minds off of God. If we give in and begin to worry and get anxious about things, we'll lose the protection that comes with God's peace. Paul wrote:

    "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:6-7 NIV)

We need our BATTLE SHOES today, so let's make sure to slip them on, by faith, before we go any further throughout the day. One way to do that is to make sure that we continue to read and meditate on God's Word, and memorize His Word. Please use the tools at the end of this blog to help you in each of these endeavors. I pray that you have a PEACE-filled day today. Blessings!

Pastor Rusty

Today's "Through the Bible in a year" reading: February 5, 2008 Numbers 35:1-36:13

This week's Memory Verse: (I am testing us this week. Very long, but beneficial) Ephesians 6:13-17

Ephesians 6:13-17 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. (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. (17) And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

TOMORROW'S BLOG: The Sword of the Spirit