By Neil Anderson
Therefore, take up the full armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm
A primary element in our protection from Satan and evil is the armor that God has provided for us and instructed us to put on in Ephesians 6:13-17. When we put on the armor of God, we are really putting on Christ (Romans 13:12-14). And when we put on Christ, we take ourselves out of the realm of the flesh, where we are vulnerable to attack, and we place ourselves within the dominion of Christ, where the evil one cannot touch us. Satan has nothing in Christ (John 14:30), and to the extent that we put on Christ, the evil one cannot touch us (1 John 5:18). He can only touch that which is on his own level. That’s why we are commanded, “Make no provision for the flesh” (Romans 13:14), meaning “Don’t live on Satan’s level.”
It would appear from the verb tenses in Ephesians 6;14, 15, that three of the pieces of armor–belt, breastplate and shoes–are already on you: “having girded . . .”; “having put on . . .”; having shod. . . .” These pieces of armor represent the elements of your protection made possible when you receive Jesus Christ and in which you are commanded to stand firm. The Greek tense of “having” signifies that the action it refers to was completed before we were commanded to stand firm. That’s the logical way a soldier would prepare for action: He would put on his belt, breastplate and shoes before attempting to stand firm. Likewise, we are to put on the full armor of God after having already put on Christ.
When you read through Ephesians 6:10-20, you will notice the emphasis on the active part we must play on behalf of our own spiritual defense: “be strong” (verse 10); “put on” and “stand firm” (verse 11); “take up,” “be able,” “resist,” and “stand firm” (verse 13); “stand firm” (verse 14); “taking up” (verse 16); “take” (verse 17)’ “pray at all times” and “be on the alert” (verse 18).
Over the next several days, we will consider each of the six pieces of armor from Ephesians 6:13-17.
Prayer: Teach me my responsibility in spiritual warfare, Lord, that I may be strong in You and in the strength of Your might.