Verse For The Week:
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.” [Ephesians 5:10]
The Main Idea:
Paul finishes this letter to the church with a reminder. A reminder that although we will face trouble, trials, temptations, and opposition. We are not alone, and we do not fight alone. He reminds us to be strong in the Lord, in the power of His might not our own. He says put on the whole armor of God that we may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. He says that we remain faithful in the battle not because we can push our way through it, but because we have complete strength in the God who has already won the war.
Point 1 - Our Battle is Fought and Won in the Lord
Paul tells us that our battle is not with this world but with spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places and with principalities and powers and rulers of the darkness of this age. The battle that we face as Christians is not one that we can win in our own strength in this world. We can not just fight and wrestle our way through it to victory on our own. Immediately after saying this Paul says, “Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”. We must take on the full armor of God in order to stand against our enemy. We must stand firm. Not in our strength, but in the strength of our God.
Point 2 - Put On God's Armor
We can put on the full armor of God because of Jesus. Put on the belt of truth because Jesus is our ultimate truth. We must be firmly rooted in the truth of who Jesus is. We are rooted in His truth when we read and study His word. We can not put on the belt of truth if we are not learning and growing in ultimate truth, which is only found in the word of God. Put on the breastplate of righteousness because the only righteousness we have is that which was given to us by Jesus. Our breastplate is His righteousness and we receive it by faith. Though we have no righteousness of our own we should still by His power choose to do right. Jesus' righteousness will never fail. Put on the sandals of the Gospel of peace. Us as believers have a firm foundation in the Gospel.
Always remember the peace that we have in knowing our security in what Jesus has done for us. Take up the shield of faith. Trusting in the power of God and his will. No matter what things come and try to shake you. Knowing that ultimately He works all things for the good of those who are called according to His purposes. Put on the helmet of salvation. Knowing that upon salvation you received the Holy Spirit. Salvation and the receiving of the Holy Spirit is what empowers us to fight. Even in our weakness. Without salvation we have no victory. Take up the sword of the spirit. The one offensive weapon that we have to go against the attacks of the enemy. Our sword is the word of God. When Jesus was tempted by the devil he used scripture to defeat him and we must do the same. Pray. When we pray we show that we completely rely, and depend on God to act and move. We realize that our entire armor is rooted in His strength. Without Him we are powerless to fight. In prayer we can fight through His power. In His power there is victory.
What has God been teaching you?
Do you put on the full armor of God?
If not, what parts of the armor of God do you need to begin to put on daily?
What parts of the armor do you need to grow in?
How has this passage challenged you this week?
How has your week been spiritually?
Questions for Personal Accountability:
(these don’t have to be discussed openly but leave your group with this thought)
- Do you consistently and continually pray for all the saints?
- The people in your group?
- The people in your church?
- The Pastors and leaders of your church?
- The church body as a whole around the world?