“Stand, therefore, with truth like a belt around your waist, righteousness like armor on your chest, and your feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace.” Ephesians 6:14-15 HCSB
Paul tells us to put on the full armor of God to stand against the tactics of the enemy. This is literally an instruction intended for our protection. When God says no weapon formed shall prosper that means weapons are formed and attempted against us. Paul gives the wisdom on how to stand against such weapons.
When Christ gave His life on the cross, an unfair exchange took place. He took the wrath we deserved and we in turn gained His righteousness. Paul uses this image to illustrate that we need to guard our hearts with the breastplate of righteousness. A threat to our heart is condemnation. I believe condemnation is one of the enemy’s favorite devices. He is wily and knows how to twist facts. He did it in the garden (“Did God really say…?), when he tempted Christ (“If you are the Son of God…”), and he’s still doing it today. He plays with our past, what we’ve done, and causes us to question our righteousness. Even when we fall as Christians, the enemy tries to exploit our short-comings to distract us. His distractions aren’t intended to merely delay us or preoccupy our minds for awhile. Jesus told us that Satan’s intent is to kill, steal, and destroy. Paul understood the danger of having to stand against the enemy. This is why it is so important to guard our hearts. Paul also says that truth is the belt that holds our breastplate in place.
The truth is that God has a purpose for all of those who He’s called into His family. The truth is there is no condemnation in Christ. The truth is God sees us through the blood of Christ, all of our sins were forgiven, and the penalty was satisfied through Jesus laying down His life. The truth is God sees us as holy and righteous; this is not of our own doing but of His call and our “yes” to that call. These truths are what needs to be protected by the breastplate. God’s word is essential to a believer’s stance against the enemy.
Paul says our feet are to be sandaled with the readiness for the gospel of peace. He says to stand against the tactics of the enemy, we as believers have to stand with stability which can only be done with the Gospel as the foundation. This is why studying God’s word is essential for all believers. We have to know what God says. We know that the enemy is not above misusing the word of God in his attempts to kill, steal, and destroy us. When we know what God says about us, about our trials, and what we have access to, we are able to stand against the enemy’s tactics that we are most assuredly going to face.
What has the enemy tried to use to keep you in condemnation?
What truths combat that?
What Bible verses support those truths?