ARMOUR OF GOD – Sword of Truth
Somewhere in a movie, I’m sure we have all witnessed this scene before. The playground bully approaches the boy he always picks on. ‘Hey loser, give me your lunch money.’ And before he knows what’s coming, the boy he’s picking on remembers what his dad told him ‘The best form of defence is attack’, and he punches the bully in the nose. The bully is so surprised that he runs away.
Well, the same applies in our spiritual fight against Satan. Sometimes as Christians we have this view that we are these helpless victims, sitting ducks, waiting for Satan, the bully’s next attack. But Paul certainly doesn’t believe that that is biblical. On Tuesday Pastor Justin pointed out that although we have some armour that clearly is for defence, Paul also makes it clear that a very necessary part of our armour are weapons we can use to attack.
In Paul’s mind, we aren’t to be sitting ducks, waiting for Satan to torment and destroy us. No! Paul says ‘Fight back!’ Look at what he says in Eph 6:17
“Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”Ephesians 6:17
The sword is a dreadful weapon. Powerful and sharp enough to cut through flesh and bone, and sometimes even through armour. Well, God has given you a sword, one that is sharper than any earthly double-edged sword and one that you can use to really thwart the attacks of Satan and with which you can do some serious damage. And that sword is the Word of God.
We know that the Words in your Bible come from the mouth of God. We know that they are powerful words. Listen to these verses:
“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”Hebrews 4:12
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness. ”2 Timothy 3:16
” And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.”Genesis 1:3
When God speaks, things happen. And He has spoken in the Bible. There is immense power in pages in your Bible.
But Dave, how is the Word of God a sword in my fight against Satan? How is it helpful against his attacks, his oppression, his temptations, the seeds of doubt he sows, the lies he tells me?
A couple of weeks ago I did a devotion on self-control and I pointed us to a passage where Jesus practised immense self-control when he was tempted by Satan in the wilderness. Have you noticed what Jesus did in the face of temptation? He fought back! And how did He do that? With the Word of God!
We looked at these verses last time, but look at Luke 4:3-4 :
“The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’”Luke 4:3-4
Satan came back twice more and twice more Jesus attacked back with His Father’s Words. And what was the end result? The text tells us that the devil left Him until an opportune time. It was like he was saying, ‘Ah it’s no use now. Jesus keeps fighting back with Scripture. I can’t get through. I’ll try again later.’ Actually, maybe it was more like ‘Ouch! That stings. Man I can’t take this anymore. I’m done tempting Jesus right now. I need to recover from my wounds.’
Friend, if you’re struggling with feeling like a victim. If you feel oppressed by the devil or accused by him or tormented by lies, cut at him with the Word of God. ‘No Satan, my God says you’re the father of all lies. I believe only what He says.’ If Satan tells you you’re worthless or not good enough or guilty, dig that Sword into him – Well that’s just not true Satan. Because my God says that there is no more condemnation for me, that He is for me and that no one can bring a charge against me.’
James tells us that when we resist the devil he flees. When we resist Satan with God’s Words I believe he trembles and gets the heck out of there!
At times, it may feel like the devil is winning the battle, but he has lost the war. He does not have authority over you. Only God does. In your fight against the devil, take up your sword and fight. Stand on the Word of God. Choose to believe it for yourself. I believe that we will live as more than conquerors if we do this.
Stand strong brothers and sisters.
Activity for kids
(Click on the bold, underlined text in the activities below to go to the online link.)
1. Learn from Jesus:
Read Matthew 4:1-11 with your children to see how Jesus, when he was tempted in the wilderness, fought against the Devil with God’s word. Discuss how we can fight against the enemy with God’s word, and perhaps start a new habit of memorising Scripture together as a family.