Armour (spiritual)

<<protective covering>>

Armour is used to shield or safeguard from that which would bring harm or destruction.

The Christian life is an ongoing conflict not in the physical but the spiritual realm and likewise our weapons are not physical but spiritual. The enemies of our spirits are not visible yet real. 

Who is against us?

* the world system with its temptations and peer pressure to conform. The Bible says, “Do not conform…” (Rom 12:2).

* our fallen nature, the carnal flesh (Rom 7:14-23). We are to “put to death” the desires and activities of the flesh (Col 3:5; 1 Pet 1:14).

* although Satan uses people to achieve his goals, it is not against them we struggle. It is against evil spiritual forces (fallen angels which are demons and evil spirits), which would try to turn us away from Christ (Eph 6:12).

Christ is our ultimate weapon and has entrusted His authority to us stating, “In my name…” we are to do the works He did (Mk 16:17,18). By His substitutionary death in our place He totally destroyed the power of Satan,

Armour is put on before the battle starts

which he exerted over us because of sin (Rom 6:6-18; 1 Jn 3:8). "They overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb [Jesus]" (Rev 12:11). Our focus and confidence must always be on the victory we have in Christ, not what the devil would try to divert our attention with.

The purpose of armour is protection for we all have vulnerable areas. David’s slingshot stone found Goliath’s small-unprotected area (1 Sam 17:49). Satan will exploit the weak and unprotected areas of our lives and we never know when he will attack. We put the armour on by having a vital continuing relationship with God, growing in the knowledge of Him, being filled with the Spirit and walking in obedience. When we are aware some piece is misplaced or missing because we have resorted to the flesh, are taking direct spiritual hits, or not living in truth and righteousness we need to repent and reinstate the armour.

Christ has made available defensive armour to maintain and defend our position and offensive weapons for attacking and gaining new territory. It is our responsibility to utilize these resources and so ultimately triumph in our spiritual battles.

We are to “Put on the armour of light…clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom 13:12,14).

Paul reinforced this teaching when writing to the Ephesians (Eph 6:10-18). He used the analogy of a soldier, which his readers would readily identify with, and itemized different aspects of ‘Jesus our armour’. It is essential to wear each piece of armour correctly to provide complete protection, however no armour is mentioned to provide protection for

Armour does not stop an attack, but reduces its effect

the back.  We are to face the enemy at all times, not being ignorant of his ways, realizing his intention is to steal, kill and destroy (Jn 10:10). We are not to yield to his tactics but resist him and submit to the Lordship of Christ (Jas 4:7).

We too should protect ourselves with:

* the belt of truth provides a sure foundation. What is a truth? “Your Word is the truth” (Jn 17:17). Knowing and applying the truth will set us free, enabling us to live as we should with honesty a characteristic of our lifestyle (Jn 8:32).

* the breastplate of righteousness, guards the vital organs. “Guard your heart more than any treasure, for it is the source of all life” (Prov 4:23).  Jesus is my righteousness providing self-worth, and right relationship with God (Rom 3:22; 1 Cor 1:30; 2 Cor 5:21).

* the shoes of peace. Readiness and motivation to be active and bold in sharing the good news of salvation and advancing steadily in our spiritual walk. "How lovely are the feet of those who bring good news" (Isa 52:7). "We have peace with God through Christ" (Rom 5:1). “My peace I give you” (Jn 14:27).

* the shield of faith. Faith is the means whereby we prevent Satan’s flaming poisonous arrows from wounding or touching us. These can be in the form of temptations, discouragements, insults or problems. “This is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith” (1 Jn 5:4). Moreover, we are confident all things work together for our good (Rom 8:28).

* the helmet of salvation, protects our mind from doubt and despair. The carnal mind is at enmity with God, only His salvation can save us. Temptation starts in the mind, after being triggered by one of the five senses. Keep trusting and hoping in God
by “Being renewed in your mind” (Rom 12:1,2).

* the Sword of the Spirit, which is “The Word of God is quick and powerful…” (Heb 4:12). When attacked use it as Jesus did,
“It is written ...” (Mt 4:4,7,10). It is essential to know the Bible and be proficient in it’s use.

* Pray in the Spirit at all times (Eph 6:18; 1 Thes 5:17; Jud 1:20).  This indicates an open and vital communication link to the commanding officer – Jesus Christ. This is not just for our loved ones and ourselves but also for all people (1 Tim 2:1).

* Living a righteous God-honouring and obedient life is a powerful weapon, as revealed by Jesus when He said, “The devil has no hold on me” (Jn 14:30).

* The words we speak (and declare over ourselves) are powerful, as is our worship and praise to God (2 Chr 20:22; Ps 50:23; Act 16:25,26).

It is essential to exercise discernment so we are aware of Satan’s tactics and do not give him any foothold (valid or legitimate reason) to attack, although mindful it is only in Christ (not in our strength or ability) that we can stand against these attacks (Zech 4:6; 2 Cor 10: 3-6; Eph 4:22-24,27; Tit 2:11,12).  By standing firm in the faith, we are able to resist Satan who prowls around like a lion (1 Pet 5:8,9). Some people routinely 'put on the armour' each day, while others do when they sense they are fighting in their own strength because the weapons are not in place and affording protection.

See also: attack, discernment, flesh, praise, Satan, spiritual warfare, temptation, weakness.