Summary: Pt 3 in a series on the spiritual battle we are in and how to use the weapons we have to win these battles

Battle Gear pt 3

At the beginning of world war II, France believed that they were safe

against Germany behind the Maginot line. The Maginot line was a defensive line

built in the 1930’s. It stretched for over 200 miles on the NE border of France. It

was state-of-the-art, built of thick concrete with heavy guns, living quarters, store

houses and underground rail lines. It was designed to hold off any German

attack. The Germans however defeated this fortified defense by simply going

around it through the Ardennes forest, which the French considered

impenetrable. By using superior aircraft and armored tank divisions, something

the French were not prepared for, the German army overcame this defensive

line simply by avoiding it. In the end, the maginot line was useless and France

surrendered to the enemy.

France fell in defeat because they underestimated their enemy and relied

on the wrong weapons. They did not anticipate the attack their enemy used.

They thought they were protected. We too are in a war, a war against Satan

and his legions of demons. We must also be careful to not make these same

mistakes. In order to defeat the attacks of our enemy, we must be armed with the

right weapons and armor. We must not underestimate our enemy’s intelligence

and cleverness. And, we must not rely on our own weapons and armor. As we

have said the last 2 weeks, the Bible tells us we are only sheep in this war and

have no armor of our own. We must rely on the armor, and the strength of God

in order to defeat the attacks of our enemy, Satan.

We have been looking at Ephesians, chapter 6 verses 10-20. Paul tells

us here that we are in a battle with the unseen forces of the spirit world, and that

we must put on the full armor of God in order to hold our ground and stand fast

against the attack of our the enemy. He then lists the pieces of this armor,

comparing them to the armor of the Roman soldier. We have already looked at

the first 3 pieces of that armor, the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness

and the boots of peace. Today we look at the remaining pieces of our armor.

The shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the spirit. and a

secret weapon we have in this battle.

The first 3 pieces of our armor are things that must be put on and worn all

the time, by the Roman soldier, as well as us, they are never taken off. The next

3 however, were only taken up when the actual fighting was about to begin.

Now remember, Paul is writing this as he is actually chained to a Roman

soldier, one of the best fighting soldiers in the world at that time, and he is

comparing the weapons and armor of this mighty warrior to the spiritual weapons

and armor that we must have in our battle. The 4th piece of armor Paul

describes is the shield of faith. Now a Roman soldier had 2 different types of

shields that he would use. The 1st was a smaller shield, about 2 feet in diameter

which was strapped to the arm and was used in close combat. The shield Paul is

referring to, however, was a much larger shield, about 2-1/2 feet wide and 4-1/2

tall. It was made of wood and covered with leather or metal. What happened

during times of combat was that the enemy forces would launch a barrage of

arrows toward their enemies soldiers. Often these arrows were wrapped in

pieces of cloth and soaked in pitch. The tips would then be set on fire and the

arrows would then be shot at the enemy. These flaming missiles could inflict

serious damage on unprotected troops. The Roman soldier would stand behind

these large shields to protect themselves from these flaming arrows. The shields

were designed so that the arrows when striking the shields would be put out by

the leather covering on the shield which was often soaked with water.

Our shield, is the shield of faith. When Satan launches his flaming arrows

or darts at us we have our shield of faith to protect us. And what are these

flaming darts? Well, how about doubts, discouragement, depression, fear,

feelings of hopelessness, guilt, shame, greed, lust, pride, stubbornness, not

trusting and the list goes on. The shield of faith is a shield of trust. We are told to

walk by faith, putting our trust in the Lord. Believing in God to take care of our

every need. Having faith that no matter what happens to us, God will be there to

help us through. By using the shield of faith, we are able to extinguish all the

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