THE CHRISTIAN’S ARMOR
#4 - A GOOD PAIR OF SHOES OR "IF THE SHOE FITS, WEAR IT"
God has the answer for those who feel pressured, trapped, up against it, discouraged, or even defeated. God's answer, figuratively speaking, has to do with footwear. I'm sure you've worn various shoes or boots that were a problem. Some were too large. Some were too small. Some had holes in them. Some were too slippery on the bottom, and you had no traction. And some were just plain uncomfortable!
God wants you to trade in whatever footwear you are wearing for a comfortable, sturdy pair of army boots. Ephesians 6:14-15 says,
"Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;"
We are in Spiritual warfare against the devil and his henchmen, the demons. Ephesians 6:11-12
God has provided the Christian with armor to withstand the devil.
The Christian's responsibility is to wear and use that armor.
Roman soldiers wore sandals that were hobnailed. We might say they were cleated.
Imagine a soldier trying to march up a slippery hill and not being able to do so because of smooth bottoms to the shoes. Imagine a soldier trying to fight an enemy when he couldn't stand firm. If the soldier had slippery boots, the enemy could push him down, and defeat him.
Our footwear is the "preparation" or the "readiness" of the Gospel of peace.
In a real sense the Christian needs to be ready or prepared to move out and share the Gospel at any moment. (Romans 10:14-15) And although we are to be ready to go and share the Gospel, that does not appear to be the meaning here. The context here is standing. We are to be standing, resisting the devil! We stand firm, resisting the devil when we are wearing a prepared foundation, a base which will not allow us to be moved by uncertainty, anxiety, or worry. We will be able to stand firm when we are standing in the peace of the Gospel.
THE POSITION OF PEACE
Before a person comes to Christ, he or she has an enemy. Because of our sins, we are God's enemies. Oh, He loves us, but sin separates us from God and makes us God's enemies. Isaiah 59:2, Ephesians 2:2-3
We could not have peace because we were God's enemies.
A person under the bondage of sin and service to the devil cannot have peace.
We were God's enemies. But God sent his Son to the cross to die for our sins. He died in our place, the righteous for the unrighteous. He died so we could have peace. Romans 5:1
The moment you trust Christ as Savior one battle is over.
You are no longer God's enemy, you are now God's child. John 1:12
THE POWER FOR PEACE
God wants you to have two kinds of peace.
He wants you to have peace with Him. That happens the moment you come to Christ as Savior.
But God also wants you to have His peace to rule inside of you. It is possible to actually be at peace and not feel peaceful. And this is where Satan likes to get in and meddle.
If Satan can stop you from experiencing God's peace, he will.
God in His goodness wants us to experience the peace of God.
God has provided a very Special person to live inside of us to give us the power to have peace. This special person is God, the Holy Spirit. John 14:15-18, John 14:26-27
The power for peace, the Holy Spirit of God, lives in your life.
THE PRACTICE OF PEACE
Now we see how the Christian can put on these boots, the preparation of the Gospel of Peace. I feel it can be summed up in three words:
FILLING - Ephesians 5:18
How can you tell if you are filled? Ephesians 5:19-21, Galatians 5:22-23
FOCUS - Isaiah 26:3-4
FELLOWSHIP - Psalm 27:4-5, Philippians 4:6-7