Summary: As Christians, we are engaged in daily spiritual warfare. Heaven has not left us to fend off attacks under our own power, but has provided powerful spiritual resources for Life in the Combat Zone - The Armor of God
July 04, 2020
The bulk of the of the Armor we have studied so far is defensive in nature. The Breastplate, Shield and Helmet are meant to protect us from our Enemy’s assaults and attacks. However, God did not intend for us to simply endure what the devil fires at us. We have also been provided the Sword of the Spirit TO FIGHT BACK.
Why is the Holy Spirit and the Words He speaks to us found in the position of the “Sword”?
Roman soldiers used a Machaira “a short sword or dagger” measuring 12-20 inches in length. This short sword was an especially brutal weapon. It was designed to do maximum damage in close combat with both sides of the blade honed to razor sharpness. A soldier didn’t use a Machaira to injure or maim, he used it to kill. This is the sword Paul had in mind when he wrote:
Ephesians 6:17 – Take … the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
I like how Moffat translates this verse . . . and take the Spirit as your Sword (that is, the word of God)."
We have been given a powerful weapon in the words of God as we find them in Scripture:
• Psalm 119:105 - Thy word is a lamp to my feet, And a light to my path.
• Isaiah 55:10-11 - As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
• Colossians 3:16 - Let the word “logos” of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
• 2 Timothy 3:15-17 - … from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
• Hebrews 4:12 - For the word “logos” of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
“Logos” is the Greek word that refers - in a general sense - to the entire word of God communicated through Scripture. The truth about sin and the truth about WHO God is, WHAT He has done and WHAT He has promised to do through Jesus.
In Ephesians 6:17 Paul uses a different Greek word, “Rhema” which refers to a specific word or message from God to a specific person that is relevant to a need / situation or moment in time. It is spoken clearly in certain and definite terms. When the Spirit speaks a “rhema” into your mind, you don’t say, huh?
The Machaira was attached to the soldier’s belt when not in use – making it easily accessible at a moment’s notice. Likewise, the Sword of the Spirit is connected to the Belt of Truth. The Holy Spirit is NEVER going to use words that contradict Scripture.
The “rhema” words He speaks to us in times of crisis or despair or discouragement or perplexity or when we need direction or whatever the situation might be ---- those words have their source and foundation in the “logos” word of God:
• Isaiah 30:21 - Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it."
• John 6:68 - Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words “rhema” of eternal life.
• John 14:26 - But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
God loves us and He is speaking to us all the time ----- Sometimes the WORD demands a response / obedience on our part:
• Genesis 12:1 - Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go forth from your country and from your relatives and from your father's house, to the land which I will show you”….
• Exodus 3:5 - Then He said, "Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground."