In the service of our King, we are engaged in a spiritual battle every single day. But do not fear! We do not face Satan in our own power. Paul tells us to “Be strong in the Lord and in the power of HIS might.” We wear the helmet of salvation, the breastplate of righteousness, the belt of truth, and shoes that are the preparation of the gospel of peace. We are protected from satan’s attacks by our shield of faith. Our Father has provided everything we need to stand tall and boldly proclaim His love in a world that so desperately needs His hope. He has even given us a weapon — a weapon that no power can stand against: “Take… the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God…” (Ephesians 6:17)
It just makes me want to do a little jig to think about the amazing gift we have right in our hands. The Word of God is not some meaningless, powerless book… “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12) It is alive because He is alive! The words of the Bible are His words… the Bible is a way for God to speak directly into our lives. And if you know what a glorious, magnificent God He is, then you know that every word that comes from Him is enough to transform your life… to transform the world and everything in it. His words slice through temptation and trouble… they comfort us when we’re in sorrow. When we’re under attack, the Word of God is stronger than any enemy. “Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world!” (1 John 4:4)
But! Would you get onto a battlefield, even with the best weapon, if you haven’t trained with that weapon? Of course not! You wouldn’t even consider facing a skilled enemy without first preparing yourself. You’d need technique, stamina… you’d need to know your weapon before using it. If you ever really hear anything I say here, please hear this: study God’s Word!
The battle we fight is not an easy one… every day, we have to deal with internal and external problems… every day, we have to decide to stand firm in our faith. If you’ve been training with your weapon, then the Word of God will rise up in your memory and your heart and get you through the tough moment. If the Word isn’t a part of your heart and your mind, then you’re vulnerable to emotions that try to sway you and situations that try to pull you down. How can we obey God if we don’t know what He asks of us?
And maybe you’re thinking that you don’t like to read or that it’s too hard to understand… but do not let that keep you from the Bible. I know from experience that the Bible isn’t like studying a regular book, which you might read and forget. If you study God’s word and ask the Holy Spirit to teach you, the words of God — words of life and love and victory! — will be there for you when you need them. If you know Him — His character and what He’s done and the promises He’s made to you — then you can trust Him when times get hard. Believe me, He has given us this book to help us!
So I challenge you: get into training! Spend time studying your Bible! Consider yourself on a mission… revolutionize your life with the knowledge of this amazing God you serve! Take up your sword with confidence! Paul goes on to say that we should be “…praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; and for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel… that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.” (Eph. 6: 18-20) With this armor, with the Word of God in our hearts, with prayerful preparation we can speak boldly of the gospel! We can be a light in the darkness! Without fear and fully equipped by the Holy Spirit, let’s get out there and share the love that has transformed our lives!