Summary: This morning we will look at the second part of verse 17, which deals with the “Sword of the Spirit” Let’s once again read our scripture verses 10-18…
The Whole Armour of God
“The Sword of the Spirit”
Well we are getting close to the end of our study of the whole armour of God. Last week we considered the “helmet of Salvation” We noted that it was not that we had any part in our salvation, but that if we put on the helmet or the security that we have in salvation, we can stand against the schemes of the wicked one. We discussed the fact that salvation is a process, one that is completed in Gods eyes. He sees the complete picture beginning to end. When we are saved, we are justified, we are sanctified, and we are glorified. The justification is done, it means we are forgiven, our sin debt has been paid. When we by faith accept Christ, we are justified. We are also sanctified, complete in Gods eyes, but a process in ours. We are being sanctified, being made holy, more like Christ. We are also glorified; this for us is a future condition, completed in Christ, but future for us. We will be like Him, without sin, just like Jesus. The helmet of salvation guards our minds against the devils attacks, “are you sure you’re forgiven, I know the things you’ve done”! The helmet guards our minds when he attacks our current state,” you’re a Christian? I’ve seen you sin after you say you’re saved!” We are sanctified. The helmet guards or minds against the devil when he questions our future. “Are you sure you’re going to heaven?” We put on the helmet again, recognizing, we are glorified!
This morning we will look at the second part of verse 17, which deals with the “Sword of the Spirit” Let’s once again read our scripture verses 10-18…
“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 F18 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. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: 18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; “
As we half the past several weeks, we will look at the soldiers use for the sword and the spiritual application for us.
1. The Soldiers Sword
Up until now, every piece of the armor has been strictly defensive. Each of those five pieces of armor – the belt, the breastplate, the shoes, the shield and the helmet – were intended to protect the soldier from the attacks of the enemy. But this last piece of armor, while it can be used to ward off the blows of the enemy, also has some offensive capabilities. And we need that sword because our enemy is real and powerful and we need to be able to fight back when he attacks.
Roman soldiers used two different types of swords. There is the broadsword, which was a heavy weapon, usually about four feet long which was swung with both hands in a manner similar to the way we would swing a baseball bat. And that sword was used primarily to try to split open the head of the enemy as it came down upon the head. The Greek word for that broadsword, ”romphaia”, is used in the New Testament, primarily in the book of Revelation, where it is an instrument of God’s judgment against those who have chosen not to commit their lives to Jesus.
But the Greek word that Paul uses here, “makaira”, is a much smaller sword. The word described a sword that was worn in a sheath or scabbard by the Roman soldier that could be anywhere from about six inches to 20 inches long. In Matthew 26 we read that the Roman soldiers who came to Jesus carried that type of sword and that Peter used a similar sword to cut off the ear of the servant of the high priest
The most significant characteristic of this sword for us as we consider the armor of God is that it was a weapon that was used for close hand-to-hand combat. Because of its short length, it was only effective when the enemy was close and engaged in a fight.