God’s armor is to protect us “against the schemes of the devil”, who is a “spiritual force of wickedness in the heavenly places”. Heavenly places is the unseen spiritual realm that wages war against us so that we don’t live from Christ’s victory. We’ve looked at the Belt of Truth, which is God’s absolute truth. We must gird His truth around our waists to stabilize the rest of the armor. We’ve looked at the Breastplate of Righteousness, which is Jesus’s righteousness credited to us at salvation, based on God’s truth. We’ve seen the need to Shod Our Feet With the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace. This peace passes all understanding because it’s not based on feelings or circumstances but trusting in God’s truth.
The first three pieces of armor we have and should wear at all times. The next three we have at hand, and should be ready to pick them up when we need them. The first is the shield of faith. “In addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.” (Eph 6:16) We take up our shield of faith when we are most vulnerable to targeted attacks of the evil one. Taking it up enables believers to live a life of victory in an atmosphere that has the potential to harm us. The shield is actually faith itself.
Jesus is both the author and perfecter of our faith (Heb 12:2)–He embodies all of faith from its creation to perfection; He lives in us, and the life we now live in the flesh we live by faith in the Son of God (Gal 2:20)–Because He lives in us we are positioned for victory; and because we have been reborn of God, we have the faith that overcomes the world (1 John 5:4)–Our faith is the key to victory in overcoming anything we succumb to in the flesh or any fiery darts the devils throws at us.
A simple definition of faith is acting as if God is telling the truth. We must respond in faith to His Word, or our faith is empty. Faith is only as valuable as to what it is tied to; it must be tied to an objective standard by which its defined–God and His absolute truth, not our feelings. When faith operates by this standard of truth, it will eventually dictate our emotions rather than the reverse. Faith is a function of the mind that shows up in our feet.
This week my resume was passed on to a company that I’m hopeful will be the type of job and salary God has planned for me. The other day I was prompted the renew my notary license that lapsed last month. I haven’t had an interview yet, but I know that God is preparing a job for me, and most likely the job will require me to be a notary. I trust that God will supply all my needs. “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (Matt 6:33)
I’m willing to work so that I can eat (2 Thess 3:10b), so I’m thanking Him now for the job He is already preparing for me. And because of my faith, instead of waiting on a company to renew my license, I renewed it myself in preparation for what God has for me. I stepped out in faith to be ready for what God is bringing. Now I “heard” a fiery dart from the enemy that perhaps I should wait and hold on to my money instead of spending it. I really don’t know how long it will take to find a job, do I? But I know that God has a plan for me, to prosper me to give me hope and a future. Faith doesn’t make God move, but it does access what God has already done. I know He has already created a job just for me. And yesterday I received calls from two different companies interested in putting me forward for interviews. Our God is so faithful!
In Hebrews 11 we see the Hall of Faith, including David, Samson, Rahab, Noah, Abraham, Moses and others. We don’t just hear that they had faith, their faith caused them to do something. “By faith Abel offered..”; “By faith Noah..prepared..”; “By faith Abraham..obeyed..”; By faith Isaac blessed..”; “By faith Rahab..welcomed”. To live by faith means that faith becomes our regular way of thinking, doing and being. “The righteous will live by his faith” (Hab 2:4). Faith is an action taken based on the authorization of Somebody who knows what He’s talking about-our Lord!
Faith is tied to God, His truth and His power, and can’t be limited to our five senses. Our view and understanding of God–how big we believe Him to be–will determine the size of our faith. “Great is our Lord and abundant in strength; His understanding is infinite.” (Ps 147:5)
God is Omniscient; He knows all things:“Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure.’” (Is 46:9-10)
God is Omnipresent; He is everywhere: “‘Am I a God who is near,’ declares the Lord, ‘And not a God far off? Can a man hide himself in hiding places so I do not see him?’ declares the Lord. ‘Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?’ declares the Lord.” (Jer 23:23-24)
God is Omnipotent: He is the Almighty: “And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.” (Heb 1:3)
Faith accesses what is already true in the invisible, spiritual realm, where the spiritual battle is taking place. Faith is a conviction about the reality of what we cannot see, and is our positive response to God’s Word. “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Heb 11:1) Faith that’s rooted in the reality of God can extinguish all the fiery darts of the evil one, which are meant to dismantle things in our lives so that we become open for further attacks from Satan.
The shield of faith is to protect us from the attack and douse the fire. “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” (1 John 5:4) On the cross, Jesus overcame all sin (past, present and future); If He is able to overcome all and rise up in victory, He can surely overcome any destructive force we are facing now.
Our part is to believe Jesus can enable us to overcome, and then act in that belief. We already have enough strength to fight because Christ is in us; the victory is already at hand. When we pick up the shield of faith, we must do so in faith that what God has said about our situations–in His Word and through His promises–is true. Perhaps we need to remember that we are never alone: “The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, And rescues them.” (Ps 34:7)
Part of the Series: The Authority of Christ (links will be added when they are published, and more may be added to the list as God leads)
- Authority Over Corruption in the World
- Recognize Your Enemy
- Stand Firm in the Authority of Christ
- We Battle From Higher Ground
- Be Strong in the Lord and His Mighty Power
- Put On The Belt of Truth
- Put On The Breastplate of Righteousness
- Shod Your Feet With the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace
- Take Up the Shield of Faith
- Take the Helmet of Salvation
- Take the Sword of the Spirit
- Pray At All Times in the Spirit
- Strength Comes From Surrendering
- Overcoming Past Failures
- Victory in Spiritual Warfare: Outfitting Yourself for the Battle by Tony Evans