Summary: Spiritual warfare is always continuing around us. Weather you want to fight or not you are in inlisted in the war. All believers in Jesus are either continually under attacked or conquered by our spiritual enemy.
The Shield of Faith
Eph 6:16… above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to Eph 4:27-28
27 and do not give the devil a foothold.
2 Sam 22:36
36 You give me your shield of victory;
you stoop down to make me great.
As we grow together through the ministries of Open Door Church we will need to understand the importance of our individual and our corporate faith.
Spiritual warfare is always continuing around us. Weather you want to fight or not you are in listed in the war. All believers in Jesus are either continually under attacked or conquered by our spiritual enemy.
So many Christians often go to war without learning about the weapons we have to use. We grab our bibles yelling I have got a sword of the Spirit and set out claiming what we want before we ask God what he wants.
• We ask for revival but God wants to bring holiness!
• We ask for relief from pain but God wants to establish our character!
• We ask for a monetary blessing but God wants us to obey the scripture on tithing!
• We ask for God to save our unsaved family but God wants us to be the living illustration of His love and grace right before their eyes.
Believers in Jesus decide to stand on their faith without ensuring their faith that their faith has been properly maintained or discerning how God would want to use their faith.
Each piece of the armor listed here in Ephesians 6 is very important. But above all we must understand faith.
Ill… All members of the army have to be fully instructed in the use of all the weapons they use. If they are not fully instructed they are a great danger to themselves and to their fellow solder’s more than they are to the enemy.
All of us, each one, are in a battle for our spiritual life. It is more serious that the war on terrorism. It is a fight for your eternal existence.
The shield of faith must be understood and effectively used for the victory that God intends to be ours.
When Faith Fails
Many believers tell of the war stories when they stood in faith and it did not work.
Many have fallen away from the church because they felt that God did not come to their aid when they believed He would.
How is it that we can be sure we have heard from God, confident that we have received His instruction, fully guided by the Holy Spirit and then fail?
Let us never be afraid to ask hard questions about our faith.
Instead of questioning God and His ways let us examine our own faith.
Instead of feeling we have been abandoned by God let us abandon our own self assurance.
We should not condemn ourselves or belittle our faith that we do have, but we need to examine fully our faith failures so we can increase our effectiveness in all things.
We must never walk the path of denial or disillusionment that result from misunderstandings of our faith.
These are not the results of God’s failure to comply too our wishes but as a result of our failure to discern and know God completely.
A careful understanding of faith will help a believer exercise better discernment and deal with the problems caused when our faith gets off track.
The solders of Rome always had two shields. One was a parade shield and the other was a battle shield.
The parade shield was an oversized medallion carried on one arm that barley covered the chest.
The battle shield of which Paul was speaking was much larger and more powerful.
This shield was about 2 feet wide, 4 feet high and 6 inches thick. It was made of 6 or more layers of animal hide sewn together to become nearly as strong as steel.
This shield was designed to withstand the heavy hard blows of the enemy who is bent on destruction.
As a believer most of the deadliest blows will come against our faith.
When the enemy attacks our righteousness, it has less effect because our righteousness comes through Christ.
When the enemy wants to do real serious damage it must be real, true, God given faith that will stop the deadly blows and attack the enemy.
Above all take with you the shield of faith.
If we do not understand and maintain faith our shield will fail when the enemy attacks.
A cracked or broken shield in battle is a disaster for whole army because an effective army functions as one unit.
The power of unity in a church is illustrated when we all understand the shield of faith and advance on the territory of the enemy.