Summary: Paul tells us to take on Gospel footwear and to take up the shield of faith.
Last time, we saw that the Christian warrior is one who desires to walk in the truth and who depends on the righteousness of Christ. He seeks to make sure that his daily condition matches his eternal position.
Therefore, he stands fast and firm against the devil’s lies as he asks the Lord to search his heart daily and reveal anything that is inconsistent with the victory that is his in Christ.
He also stands firm against the devil’s lies regarding his eternal position. Regardless of whatever failure he experiences in life, he emerges from it better and stronger, because he knows that his position before the Father is such that he is eternally loved, accepted, and victorious in Christ.
Therefore, he refuses to listen to or believe the lies the devil tells him about how God could not love him any more, or use him any more. He honestly confesses his failures, repents of his sins, and moves forward in his walk with the Lord.
Now today, we will consider yet two more weapons of our warfare: our foot wear and our shield.
(READ vs. 13-16)
1. Gospel foot wear - v. 15
A Christian warrior is dedicated to sharing the Good News.
When Paul mentions our footwear, he is speaking of a willingness to go when ever and where ever our commander in chief wants us to go. We are ready to share the Good News, whereby we have experienced the peace of God! This is what Peter was referring to when he said:
“Honor Christ and let him be the Lord of your life. Always be ready to give an answer when someone asks you about your hope.” - 1 Peter 3:15 (CEV)
If live in such a way as to make sure our daily condition is matching our eternal position of victory in Christ, then, not only will we experience the blessings of heaven today, but we will be used of God to expand the influence of the kingdom of heaven and minimize the influence of the kingdom of darkness, and others will be drawn to Christ as they note the difference in our lives.
The Christian warrior then, actively seeks to be involved in sharing the Good News. Therefore, he will seek to follow God’s guidance in . . .
A. Interceding for unbelievers.
The Christian warrior, through prayer, asserts his God given authority to enforce God’s heavenly decrees on earth concerning what the cross of Christ has bound and loosed. As we “pray in the Spirit,” interacting with God in prayer, allowing Him to guide us in our intercession for those held captive by sin and Satan, we claim victory over the evil one who has blinded them to the truth, so that they might have opportunity to understand the truth and choose to believe.
“Satan, the god of this evil world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe, so they are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News that is shining upon them.” - 2 Corinthians 4:4 (NLT)
In our prayer for those who do not know Christ, God can give us insight as to how the powers of darkness are deceiving them, so we might exert our authority over the enemy in that area. This is part of what Paul meant when, in 2 Corinthians 2:11, he said of Satan, “we are not ignorant of his devices.”
In praying for those without Christ, God wants to lead us to understand what the issue is with that person, where Satan is deceiving them, and what truths they need to be awakened to. As we pray specifically for our lost friends, we can defuse the lies of the enemy, giving them opportunity to understand the truth they need to understand in order to choose to be saved.
But the Christian warrior not only seeks to follow God's guidance in interceding for unbelievers, but in . . .
B. Interacting with unbelievers.
“Live wisely among those who are not Christians, and makethe most of every opportunity.” - Colossians 4:5 (NLT)
One important principle to recognize when it comes to my being led by God in relating to unbelievers, is to understand how God has designed me to share my faith. Paul speaks of sharing our faith in terms of footwear. One of the things we understand about footwear is that “one size does not fit all.” I believe God wants each of His warriors to find their “fit” when it comes to their Gospel footwear.
In his book, “Becoming A Contagious Christian,” Bill Hybels identifies 6 different styles by which we can be involved in sharing the Good News. Let's briefly look them over and as we do, think about which approach is your “fit.”
1) The Confrontational Approach - Peter - Acts 2