We’ve got your daily encouragement, written by Hanna Winslow.
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 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 firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel,
Let’s focus on the action words associated with using the spiritual armor. Here are some of them:
- Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.
- Take your stand against the devil’s schemes.
- Our struggle is against spiritual forces of evil.
- Stand your ground.
- Stand firm.
- Pray in the spirit on all occasions and with all kinds of prayers and requests.
- Be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
This is not a passive response to the spiritual war we are living in. We have been provided with everything that we will ever need to live victoriously in Christ’s victory over sin and death. Although we may feel overwhelmed by the world and our own sinful nature, we do have the ability to withstand it.
In this passage, we are being called to accountability in how we take up the tools that God has miraculously given us through Christ. We are actually expected to successfully do battle against the schemes of the enemy. To doubt the effectiveness of the armor he has given us reveals doubts that we have about the power of our God.
Are you continually failing to pass a spiritual test? Maybe you just can’t trust God with that one thing in your life, or you just keep falling into the same sin. If this is the case, please recognize that although you may never think or say this, that the fruit of your life is exposing a lack of belief in the promises and ability of God to accomplish his will in your life. We’ve all been there, but when do we find ourselves there, it’s time to do something about it. You absolutely need to read James 1 if this resonates with you! The whole chapter. In verse 22 we are warned, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
There’s no reason to be discouraged! All we are asked for is FAITH in God as he is represented in his word, the Bible. The actions that result from those genuine beliefs about him will follow.
This happens regardless of whether our genuine beliefs are correct; our beliefs result in either good or bad fruit which is why it is so important to be immersed in his word. Our small offering of acting in faith is what God uses to accomplish major works in our hearts and lives. We are not acting in our own strength; instead, through our faith in who he is, we are inviting God to do his work.
Father, please prompt our spirits to align with yours in the ways that you are working in us. Thank you for your amazing patience. We have never deserved your love but you have set your affection on your creation and we will thank and praise you for eternity. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Exercise your faith in the area that you are struggling to maintain. Believe in the force of God’s redemptive work in your life. He is always working and he’s always with you. Believe his word that the fiery trials are being used to try your faith in a new way, and that the result will be the most pure, strong, and beautiful relationship with him that you will carry into eternity.
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