Summary: 5 of 11. Paul closes his direction to the Ephesian church by encouraging them to find their strength in the Lord. But where or how can God's people find the strength to stand victorious? God’s people acquire strength to stand victorious thru a distinct...
STRENGTH To STAND-V—Ephesians 6:10-20
But I Don’t Want To Be A Pirate:
When Jordan was 6, he always told everyone he wanted to be a medical doctor when he grew up. One day he was running through the house & into the corner of a chair & hurt his eye. He cried for a while & thru his tears he kept saying, "Oh no, oh no, now I can't be a doctor when I grow up."
His grandmother assured him he could still be a doctor & Jordan kept telling her he couldn’t. Finally she asked, "Why can't you be a doctor?"
Holding one hand over his eye, Jordan said, "Because now I will have to be a pirate!"
Courage—to stand firm for & in Christ—against the lost world’s direction.
Confidence—knowing that we cannot compromise with the opponent.
Perseverance—knowing that the Lord’s armor holds & protects thru every battle.
Paul urged the Ephesian church to find their strength in the Lord by effectively arming themselves.
The church must acquire God’s strength to stand victorious.
Where & How can the church find strength to stand victorious?
12 distinctions of the Christian soldier’s strength for victory.
We have found that—
...God’s people acquire strength to stand victorious..or..acquire victory thru a distinct...
5—God’s people acquire strength to stand victorious thru a distinct...
:14—“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness,”
“having girded your waist with truth”:
The Christian’s “standing” before God against active wickedness, is secured when he/she “girds” the “waist.” That is, the “waist” was wrapped with a belt-or some form of securing garment. “Girding” ensured that no loose article would interfere with or limit the soldier’s ability.
In Roman soldiers of the time, the short tunic(kilt-length--above the knees) would be gathered in & secured at the “waist.” The belt also kept the lower end of the breastplate in place. It was also an attachment point for a short sword & long sword(EBC), as well as a point upon which his shield could be rested(James Lee @ SermonCentral).
The soldier’s belt was also used to strengthen the body as does a weight lifter’s belt or a back brace.(JL @ SC)
As the belt tied tightly around the waist indicated the readiness of the soldier, so to loosen/slacken the belt was an indication of off-duty status.(EBC)
—I can remember my Daddy loosening his belt when he sat in his La-Z-Boy rocker.—
Since Satan is the originator & promoter of lies(Jn. 8:44), then deception plays a prominent role as a means of dismantling “truth.”(Jerry Miller). Knowing “truth” thereby dismantles deception.
Likewise, “truth” itself is that which holds together the package of armor.
God’s “truth” keeps the serious soldier of Christ from slowing his pace or falling to the ground from neglect of it.
We are kept from stumbling thru adherence to “truth.”
*If a person puts no trust in God’s word as “truth,” then his entire ensemble/array of protection & offense will partially(if not wholly) fail as a result. He will be led astray with disconnected pieces of protection that are woefully out of place.
Thru completely denying God’s revealed truth & His continuing truth, a person obviously lives in a false world of their own concoction/devising/fabrication.
Even Christians can fall victim to such concoction/devising/fabrication, thru being only partially obedient to God(1Cor. 3:11-15).
*1Cor. 3:11-15—“For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; & the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”
Lk. 3:16—“John answered, saying to all, “I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He[Jesus] will baptize you with the Holy Spirit & fire.”
The Scripture is absolutely full of warnings(for His people) about that which is ‘false’ as opposed to His “truth.”
“Truth” is a vital part of “the whole armor of God”(:11, 13)...BUT, like all the other parts of the soldier’s ensemble, it is not enough by itself! All are intimately related to & bolstered by the other parts of the ensemble!
“Stand”(See :11, 13)—isthmi—2Aorist Active Imperative 2nd Plural—1) To cause or make to stand, to place, put, set—1a) To bid to stand by, [set up]—1a2) To place, 1b) To make firm, fix establish—1b1) To cause a person or a thing to keep his or its place, 1b2) To stand, be kept intact(of family, a kingdom), to escape in safety, 1b3) To establish a thing, cause it to stand; 2) To stand—2a) To stand by or near—2a1) To stop, stand still, to stand immovable, stand firm—2a1a) of the foundation of a building, 2b) To stand—2b1) Continue safe & sound, stand unharmed, to stand ready or prepared, 2b2) To be of a steadfast mind, 2b3) of quality--One who does not hesitate, does not waiver. Strong—a prolonged form of a primary staw; To stand(transitively or intransitively), used in various applications(literally or figuratively).