Preaching, Teaching, and Notes

Be Strong in the Lord

Ephesians 6:10 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”

Paul tell these Ephesians that each one of them, which are seated in Christ in the heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6), and still walking in this world must now also take a stand against the wiles, the methods, or stratagems of the Devil.

In order to do that, Paul tells them that they must be empowered, or enabled in the force of His might.
The original word means to be constantly empowered.

Ephesians 6:11 “Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”
Put on, Paul exhorts them, the whole armor of God.
While God has provided this, the individual Christian has the responsibility of putting it on.
We must consciously appropriate the power the Lord Jesus Christ makes available to us.
This armor is not so many imaginary pieces you put on; but it the truth of what that piece sets forth.
Ephesians 6:13 “Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
Paul stresses this again; that we must put it on.

Ephesians 6:14 “Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;”
Paul says the Christians foundation piece to stand, is the Truth. It is the truth of our Salvation, first. Then a growing knowledge of the Scriptures and how they apply to life; our life.

God wants us to have defensive armor against the wiles of the Adversary.

A soldier does not put on his armor after going into battle, but in preparation for the battle.
The belt of truth must be secure, or everything else will fall off.
It is given to us, we must put it on; but it is God’s armor, it is not of ourselves.

Connected to it is the Breastplate of Righteousness. This is, of course, Christ’s Righteousness. We are covered with the very righteousness of Christ.
But there is a little more to it than that.
If you want the protection of the breastplate, over the heart, that you must live righteously. You must practice righteousness.
Your life must be clean, there must not be hidden sin, or unholy thinking tolerated.
They must be confessed and forsaken.

God wants to empower. He wants us to be protected by His Truth and Righteousness. And He wants us to live in that truth and in obedience to His righteous commands.
Then we will have the sure footing of peace.
Ephesians 6:15 “And your feet shod with the gospel of peace;”

There is a rest and peace of mind for every Christian. And we need it, for we are to walk, and resist our Adversary, the Devil.
He will knock us off balance and have us down before we know it, by worry, tension, and fear.
But the sure footing of the Gospel of Peace, given by the God of all peace, will keep us standing. He has given us His promises to use. We need to use them.
He wants to guard or garrison you about with His Peace (Philippians 4:7). It is by the Holy Spirit, that we are so kept, against the methods of the Devil, to make us fall.
As we stand, we will need the extra protection of the the Shield of Faith.

Ephesians 6:16 “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.”
The Adversary is always trying to get inside our head, or heart with some accusation.
(Many of which are true.) But the fiery darts can be quenched or put out by lifting up our faith in God and His Word.
Did we sin? Yes, but it is confessed and I have forsaken it.
This is removing the ground of accusation.

(Some of the fiery darts are: “Why you big phony, you don’t really believe that!”
“You witness for Christ? Are you kidding? You’re the biggest sinner around!”
“You don’t want to deal with that person; they will make fun of you, or make trouble for you.”
“No really saved person would think such a thought as that.”)

Which leads us to the armor for our heads:
Ephesians 6:17 “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

If we have any doubt as to our Salvation, we will not have the confidence in God and His Word that we should. We need to think saved. Simply trust that the Holy Spirit, which has borne witness in our spirits that we are a child of God (Romans 8:16); does not make mistakes.
If we are saved, will wrong thoughts present themselves to our mind? Yes, but it is what we do with them that makes the difference.
If you allow wrong thoughts to stay in your mind, contemplate them, then they will have wrong effects upon your walk; and you will not be able to stand against the Adversary.
Confess the sin, and forsake it. Remove wrong thoughts as soon as possible, and seek that power of God to overcome them.

To stand against the wiles of the Devil, which is all defensive, so far; we must have an offensive weapon. And that is the Sword of the Spirit.
This is the Word of God. (This is not throwing the Bible at him.)
This is a “saying” of the Bible. Something given you as a promise, or right at the time when the Adversary is attacking you.
And this is by the Holy Spirit; and by saying it, in your mind, or out loud; the power of God, the Holy Spirit will be at work, right then.

Ephesians 6:18 “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereinto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;”
The Sword of the Spirit and prayer are a Christian’s offensive weapons.
As James said:
James 4:7-8 “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse ye hands ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double-minded.”
Submit yourselves to God….Know you are saved, and confessed up to date
Resist the Devil….Stand against the wiles of the Devil by using the truth of the power He gives you, wherever the Adversary attacks: heart, head, or will.
Draw nigh unto God…use prayer; All-prayer…every kind of prayer to bring down the help you need, now.

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