Summary: Message examines the footwear of the Roman soldiers and relates it to our practical life battle of sustaining our walk with the Lord by putting on the whole armor of God.
NOTE TO YOUTH WORKERS:
We have a host of youth babysitting for the 101, 201, 301, 401 classes tomorrow so our numbers may be a bit lower heading into Dream Weekend. At first I thought we would do a group sporting event like football or kickball or something until 500, then praise songs, then have small groups. But I am open to other things in place of that. Then I plan to make a bunch of contacts for the weekend.
Youth workers, let’s get our contact info for the events we are running. Last time I checked:
Slumber Party: Brigitte (grab card from me for expenses)
Pointer’s Pizza: Jordan
Sunday Night Live: Let’s Make It Awesome
I will assist in contacting people for both Risk & Pointer’s Pizza. John & Brigitte let me know how I can best help you for your activities.
HOW TO GIVE PEACE A CHANCE
Series: Ephesians 6
BIBLE VERSE: Ephesians 6:10-17 (Emphasis on verses 15-16)
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 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. 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. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 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. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
QUESTION #1: What does it mean “and your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”
Well, obviously it applies to footwear. Leaders, to be honest, I have never really studied the Roman soldiers footwear until this lesson (one of the reason breaking down the scriptures in an expository way is fantastic because it does not allow me to skip something that may be tough).
But here is what I discovered…Roman shoes were composed of the greave and the shoe itself. What is a greave? A greave was a piece of tooled metal that starts at the knee that went down past the lower leg resting on top of the foot. In a nutshell, it’s a vicious shin guard that was made out of brass. Wow!
The shoe itself was two pieces of metal, covered in small pieces of brass, it was held together by leather. Get this, the bottom had three inch spikes. I had previously heard they were cleats, but in my mind they were more like muddied football lineman cleats. Instead, these are sick, long, sharpened baseball cleats that could really do a job on a second basemen while trying to break up a double play.
I think these shoes just rock, and I had no idea. I used to say that the only weapon on the Armor of God was the sword of the spirit. But now I feel like I have to say that the MAIN weapon is the sword of the spirit, because we have to admit a three inch spiked shoe with a brass shin guard is absolutely a weapon. Don’t you agree?
Now, how does that apply to our lives now that we know?
Well, according to my understand now, peace can be used as a weapon.
Questions #2: How can peace be used as a weapon?
First shot here, peace as a weapon is still arbitrary. Peace is still one of the greatest defense mechanisms ever. If Mom and Dad want to yell at us for something, being honestly apologetic with a sincere heart stops a fight. If a boyfriend is yelling at his girlfriend (which shouldn’t really happen if at all possible) or vise versa, how about finding agreement in a calm soothing voice to halt the fight.
THE ESCALATOR EFFECT: Leaders here is a great example that I have used for ages. If youth grasp this concept, it will lead to a lifetime of solid problem solving equations. Imagine an escalator. A person hops on and it goes up, up, and up. Well, if a person is next to them they are able to have a conversation as they are together both going up the escalator. But since arguing is a never-ending escalator, have one person, get on the DOWN escalator. Meaning, a person can halt the volume of a heated conversation by dropping a level on the escalator. The other person cannot continue to rise while the other person is declining. Leaders, I know its not a perfect concept, but it does work and is simple enough for youth to use while keeping the peace.