Summary: Second piece of the spiritual armor fo God. The truth of the fact that we are only righteous through what Crhist has done for us and not in anything that we can do for ourselves.
The Breastplate of Righteousness
Ephesians chapter 6:1-6:20
We are still in the series “Putting on the whole armor of God.” Today we will be looking at the breastplate of righteousness.
Ephesians chapter 6:10-6:20
Let’s recap this so far and I hope that you are taking notes and writing things down.
First, we learned
“Be Strong in the Lord”- the key being in the Lord
That is not an easy task and is not for wimps.
Standing in your faith and realizing that you are in a spiritual battle.
It is not a playground, it is a battleground.
The first piece of armor that we put on is the belt of truth.
The belt of truth is realizing that we are not called to go toe to toe with the enemy in our own strength, but that the battle is the Lord’s and the truth that we stand on are the truths of Christ.
“Submit yourselves therefore to God, resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
We are standing in the truth of Jesus Christ and in His authority, the devil must flee.
God has Believers boot camp for all those willing to submit to God and learn to use the armor of God as a protection and as strength in times of trial and temptation.
We closed last week:
We must admit you cannot do this on your own.
You have to draw near to God and allow God to fight the battle.
You have to make time and let Him apply truths to your life.
You have to be willing for change.
Now, we are ready to effectively wear the armor of God and fight the battle of life.
The belt of truth is around your waist- that is the first piece. Now let’s go to second piece- the breastplate of righteousness.
Remember the Apostle Paul uses the roman soldier as an analogy of the spiritual battle we all face.
The breastplate goes from the neck down the front of the soldier and connects to the belt of truth.
Down the front of the soldier.
Made of leather and metal.
It is designed to protect all the soldier’s internal organs.
Why would Paul call this shield of the body a breastplate of righteousness?
To find the answer to that we have to go to the Greek for their word righteousness.
It is Diakaiosune. (Di-a-k-os-su-ne)
State of him who is as he ought to be, the condition that is acceptable to God.
The way in which man may attain a state of approval of God.
The key to understanding this (bear with me a minute) is “condition acceptable to God.”
The only way, to reach this acceptable condition is through faith in Jesus Christ (repeat)
In exchange for our faith- God counts us righteous, acceptable in His sight.
“What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.”
Any righteousness outside of Christ is self-righteousness and the prophet Isaiah tells us that it as filthy rages to God.
In our own condition, we have no righteousness.
The only righteousness acceptable is Jesus Christ. Through faith in Jesus Christ.
We put on the righteousness of God.
Our righteousness through the blood of Jesus Christ imported to us by faith in Christ.
Our obedience in obeying God’s commandments is essential to keep our hearts in agreement with God and will keep our faith genuine.
Let’s try to keep this as simple as possible
Without Christ in our lives- you cannot put on the armor of God.
Our faith is a link that connects our breastplate with God’s infinite power (repeat)
Believing in Jesus Christ allows us to receive all the power and benefits of being righteous in God’s sight. (That is all that matters)
No Christ- no righteousness
No Christ- no breastplate to spiritually protect our vital organs of heart and soul.
No shortcut- you cannot do this or have this without Christ.
How to maintain the breastplate of righteousness
1. Keep your relationship strong with Jesus Christ.
2. By faith, you are righteous in the eyes of God. As long as Jesus Christ is Lord of your life. Don’t let the devil steal that away from you.
3. Protect your heart- do not give the devil a foothold. You are a blood bought believer of Jesus Christ. The righteousness of God covers me and protects me from the enemy.
4. Obey God’s commandments- this is how we exercise our faith and stay plugged into the power of God working in our lives.