Summary: Accessing the righteousness of Christ helps bullet-proof our lives when the enemy attacks
Bullet Proofing Your Life
(Accessing the Righteousness of Christ)
Open your Bibles to Ephesians chapter 6.
Introduction: Sunrise was dawning when Los Angeles motorcycle police officer Bob Vernon saw a red pickup truck speed through a stop sign. ¡§This guy must be late to work,¡¨ he thought to himself. He turned on his emergency lights and radioed that he was in pursuit. The pickup pulled over, and the officer approached. Meanwhile in the truck, the driver thought, ¡§The cops already know!¡¨ He was scared. He rested his hand on the same gun he had used a few moments before to rob a twenty-four-hour market. The sack of stolen money was beside him on the seat. The officer said, ¡§Good morning, sir, may I see your¡X¡§ He never finished the sentence. The driver shoved his gun toward the policeman’s chest and fired from just inches away.
The cop was knocked flat seven feet away. A few seconds later, to the shock of the criminal, the officer stood up, pulled his service revolver, and fired twice. The first bullet went through the open window and smashed the windshield. The second tore through the door and ripped into the driver’s left leg. "Don’t shoot!¡¨ the thief screamed, throwing the gun and sack of money out the pickup window.
What saved the policeman’s life was dozens of layers of Kevlar, the super strong fabric used for bulletproof vests. Only three-eighths of an inch thick, Kevlar can stop bullets cold. A bulletproof vest can save your life¡K
This is week three in our study of the Eight Essential Exercises for Building a Better Body. Over the past two weeks we¡¦ve considered what exercises are necessary to build a healthy body of relationships. We all live life in the context of relationships and when we are willing to put on the Armor of God, we build those relationships up into healthy, God-honoring relationships.
We¡¦ve considered the fact that the only place we can truly find the strength needed to make our relationships work is in Christ alone. Paul tells us to ¡§Be strong in the Lord.¡¨ And any attempt on our part to make our relationships work, or to make anything work in a way that glorifies God, will fall miserably short. We can only succeed if we find our strength in the Lord. Thus, we need to allocate strength.
We¡¦ve also considered the truth that integrity is necessary to give our relationships the support and protection we need. Without integrity our relationships are open to attack by the enemy. Without integrity our relationships will be like a ship without an accurate navigational system and they will be shipwrecked. Without integrity our relationships will not last, they will not finish well. The best way we can support our relationships is to strap the belt of truth around us and to make certain that our relationships are marked by integrity.
Today I want to consider the place that righteousness plays in our relationships. However, I¡¦m going to come at this from a bit of a different angle than I have the last two weeks. Over the past two weeks we¡¦ve look at how finding strength in God and being people of integrity will directly affect our relationships. But today I want to consider our righteousness before God and take and indirect approach to looking at how it will affect our human relationships. You see, until our relationship with God is on track and healthy, all of our other relationships will suffer.
„h We cannot be right others until we are right with God!
„h We cannot be right with our spouse if we are not right with our Lord.
„h We cannot be right with our co-workers if we are not right with our Savior.
„h We cannot be right with our friends until we are right with our Maker
Read with me from Ephesians 6:10-18
Ep. 6:10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.
Ep. 6:11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil¡¦s schemes.
Ep. 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Ep. 6:13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Ep. 6:14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled round your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,
Ep. 6:15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
Ep. 6:16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.