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In Stephen Kings book Lisey’s Story, he writes about Bad Gunky.  He uses this phrase to refer to an evil Armor_of_God_01_280pxpresencee that his main characters are sometimes up against.  I think of this phrase when I think of the Christian’s spiritual enemies.  Luther talks about the World, our Fleshly desires, and the Devil.  Paul warns the church in Ephesians that our battle is against the Devils schemes, the Authorities, Principalities, Powers of Darkness and Spiritual Forces in the heavenly realms.  Bad Gunky all!

Paul also tells believers in Christ how to defeat these enemies of our soul.  In Ephesians 6:10, he says to be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.  That sounds great, but how do we do it?  Paul explains that we need to put on spiritual armor.  Or, as Stephen King says in the same book, “Strap it on!”

Of all the pieces of spiritual armor that we need to strap on, I think the most important piece is “the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God”.  It’s significant that Paul mentions both Spirit and Word.  There are theologians the world over that have a tremendous grasp of the Bible, but don’t have the Spirit, and are spiritually defeated.  There are many Christians who claim to be filled with the Spirit, but are ignorant of much of God’s Word.  They also suffer defeats regularly in the spiritual
realm.  To be victorious we must have the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.  Spirit and Word.  All the other pieces of armor are ultimately based on these two things.

With that said I will list the other pieces of spiritual armor, and rather than going into a long description of each piece, I will simply include a few relevant scriptures.

BELT OF TRUTH
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life.  No on can come to the Father except through me.”  John 14:6

You shall know the truth, and the truth will make you free.  John 8:32

BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
But now, the righteousness of God has been made known apart from the law.  This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.  Romans 3:21,,22

SHIELD OF FAITH
For it is by Grace you have been saved through faith – it is not of yourselves – it is a gift of God.  Ephesians 2:8

If you have the faith of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, “be removed from here and be cast into the deepest sea” ans it will be done. Matthew 17:20

GOSPEL OF PEACE
I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God for salvation to all who believe.   Romans 1:16

My peace I give to you. Not the kind that the world gives, I give to you.  John 14:27

HELMET OF SALVATION

   Confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  Romans 10:9

A cursory reading of these verses makes it plain that they are all connected in a radical way.  You can’t have one without the others.  A soldier back in the day could walk into his local armor shop and pick and choose which piece he wanted.  He could a quote on one or two pieces or buy the whole shebang.  As Christians, we get the whole outfit when we trust Jesus for our salvation.

I think the reason that Paul lists them all as separate entities is that the act of putting on each piece, should be a daily act of meditation each morning before we go out to face the day, to face the enemy.  God gives us each piece free of charge, and the mental act of strapping on each piece each day, each morning should give us cause for rejoicing in God and result in an attitude of strength that enables us to overcome the worries, frustrations, anxieties and anger that Satan and his minions will sling at us.  With the spiritual armor of God we will be “strong in th Lord and in His mighty power.”  We will go victorious into the day, full of joy knowing that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Schwabbynitions

Faith – believing that God loves you and wants you to be happy.

Righteousness – enjoying living in right relationship with God.

Peace – not just the absence of conflict, but wholeness and contentment in every aspect of life.

Gospel – the Good News that God loves us and wants us to be happy, and has revealed the way to inner joy through His Word.

Salvation – being saved eternally from the power of sin and the wrath of God.  Being saved daily from the time of trial and the Evil One.

Truth – reality as seen through the eyes of God and revealed to us through scripture.

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Christ’s humility is our armor, His love is our strength and His forgiveness disarms demons.

 

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“Give us this Day our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those that sin against us.  Deliver us from the Evilsalvation One; save us from the time of trial.”

In Christianity we talk about salvation.  It’s not uncommon when one Christian meets another Christian for the first time, to ask, or to be asked, “When we’re you saved?”  Sometimes, when asked this question, I want to say, “Today.”

Of course we understand the meaning of the question – When did you begin to trust in Jesus with your life and experience salvation from Sin?  Some people can remember the day and hour that they were “saved”.  Other people, like me, can’t remember an exact time or place that “salvation” occurred, because we were brought up in the faith and as far as we can remember, we always believed that God loved us and that Jesus died for our sins and rose again so that we could have eternal life. That was me.  Sure I remember a time when I was about five years old and said “the sinners prayer” at Vacation Bible School, but I trusted in God’s saving grace before that, even though I had never verbalized it in such a formal way.  Later at age eight an evangelist came to our little farmhouse in Colorado and talked to my parents and my sister and I about “salvation” and once again I prayed a prayer that he wanted me to pray, which I prayed as sincerely as I could and seemed to make everyone happy.

Some people are looking for a great emotional experience when they talk about salvation.  I had one of those as well at Summer Bible Camp one year when I was about 12.  I cried and then felt spiritually “high” for about a week afterwards.  It was a wonderful experience that I will never forget.

Some years later I began attending Bible College and experienced other spiritual, emotional and mentally transforming times that had, to various degrees, an impact on my life.  In one sense or another, these were all “salvation” experiences.  I was “saved” each time.  Sometimes I was saved from Sin, other times I was saved from sins.  The ultimate Salvation is being made righteous in the sight of God.  Other times salvation is a changing of a wrong attitude, or an incorrect perspective on some aspect of life.  Sometimes we are saved from an unforgiving spirit. In short, some of us need to be saved everyday!  Especially me.

The greatest commandments are not things we shouldn’t do, but things we should do.   “Love the Lord your God with all of your heart, mind soul and strength.  Love your neighbor as yourself.”  If we disobey God’s commandments we sin.  Not a day goes by when I am apathetic in some way or another to those around me.  Not a day goes by but that I turn a deaf ear or a blind eye to the needs of my wife, children, brothers and sisters in Christ, or strangers that cross my path.  Many times I am much more like the priest and levite that ignored their fellow man in need, than I am like the good Samaritan who showed compassion on the poor man lying naked in his own blood along the road.  By neglecting my neighbor I am also neglecting God  and disobeying his commandment to love him with my entire being.  Truly I need to be saved everyday.

Martin Luther has said that we are continually struggling against the World, the Flesh and the Devil.  That is why Jesus taught us to pray daily to be delivered from the Evil One.  Satan prowls around like a hungry lion, seeking to destroy and kill us- mentally, spiritually, socially and physically.  Our flesh and the world are bent toward sin, thus when we pray to be saved from the time of trial, we are praying for God’s power and intervention in our daily lives.  We are asking him to maintain a hedge of protection around us, our family and our community of faith.  Indeed we need salvation everyday.

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Oh, what’s going on inside of me?
I despise my own behavior
This only serves to confirm my suspicions
I’m still a man in need of a Saviour

Charlie Peacock

Why Am I Here?

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