“Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.” Ephesians 6:11
Two things stand out to me in this scripture. The first is we need the WHOLE armor of God. Second, we are called to stand firm. The key to being able to stand is the whole armor of God. The armor is described in Ephesians 6:14-18.
“Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,”. Ephesians 6:14-18
I decided to take a deep dive into what this armor is really made of with the Blue Letter Bible. I know the armor of God covers us from head to toe. I wanted to know what I am really putting on to stand against the enemy. I am not a Greek scholar, I just try to find the particular verse in the midst of all the definitions and words in the Thayer’s Greek Lexicon on the BlueLetterBible.org website. When I came across a word I didn’t know, I would use the look-up option on my phone to get a general consensus of what the word meant, those words from other sites are in parentheses and not italicized.
Truth Strong’s G225 – alētheia – (subjectively) truth as a personal excellence; that candor of mind which is free from affectation (facade), pretence, simulation (imitation of a situation), falsehood, deceit; sincerity of mind and integrity of character, or a mode of life in harmony with divine truth:
Righteousness Strong’s G1343 – dikaiosynē – integrity, virtue, purity of life, uprightness, correctness in thinking, feeling, and acting
Readiness – Strong’s G2091 – hetoimasia – the condition of a person or thing so far forth as prepared, preparedness, readiness: with the promptitude (the quality of acting quickly and without delay) and alacrity (eagerness, brisk and cheerful readiness) which the gospel produces,
Peace – Strong’s G1515 – eirēnē – according to a conception distinctly peculiar to Christianity, the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is:
Faith – Strong’s G4102 – pistis – a conviction or belief respecting man’s relationship to God and divine things, generally with the included idea of trust and holy fervor born of faith and conjoined with it: b. in reference to Christ, it denotes “a strong and welcome conviction or belief that Jesus is the Messiah, through whom we obtain eternal salvation in the kingdom of God”
Salvation – Strong’s G4992 – sōtērios – simply, equivalent to the hope of (future) salvation
The Spirit – Strong’s G4151 – pneuma – God’s power and agency — distinguishable in thought (or modalistice, as they say in technical speech) from God’s essence in itself considered — manifest in the course of affairs, and by its influence upon souls productive in the theocratic body (the church) of all the higher spiritual gifts and blessings; the Holy Spirit; in the power of the Spirit, possessed and moved by the Spirit,
Word of God – Strong’s G4487 – rhēma – properly, that which is or has been uttered by the living voice, thing spoken, word: saving truth which has God for its author,
Praying – Strong’s G4336 – proseuchomai – to offer prayers, to pray
Prayer – Strong’s G4335 – proseuchē – prayer addressed to God
Supplication– Strong’s G1162 – deēsis – seeking, asking, entreating, (Implore, plead with to persuade, ask urgently) entreat: contextually, of prayers imploring God’s aid in some particular matter: supplication for others
Keep alert – Strong’s G69 – agrypneō – to be circumspect, (cautious) attentive, ready: to be intent upon a thing
Perseverance – Strong’s G4343 – proskarterēsis persistency ***Of note this is the only time this word is used in the Bible
Saints – Strong’s G40 – hagios – most holy thing, a saint
That was a lot of words and definitions. I typically hear about putting on the armor of God but not really about what that means. We’re told to to put on the helmet of salvation, the belt of truth, the breast plate of righteousness but really what do those words mean. I have went through the motions of putting the different pieces of armor on but I didn’t really know what I was putting on.
As I looked through each of these words, I realize in order to stand against the enemy, I have to consciously put on personal excellence, integrity of character, that is in line with God. I have to put on correctness in my thinking my feeling and my acting. I have to put on being able to quickly respond with peace – not only with God but with where I am at life, in the moment. I have to put on a firm conviction of who Christ is and who I am in Him. I have to have a conviction of my salvation in Him. I have to take His Word and apply it to my life, for the situation I am standing. I have to pray like it really matters, in the moving of the Spirit. I have to persevere, being cautious. I need to be praying for the needs of others also.
That’s a lot more than standing idly by in a suit that covers me from head to toe. It’s a lot more than pretending to put on different pieces of armor to protect my head or my heart and my feet. I have to put all of that on before I engage the enemy and keep it on while I stand. We’re not just getting dressed we are actively engaging in warfare in our armored stance.
Stand – Strong’s G2476 – histēmi – stand, Metaphorically, one who in the midst of a fight hold his position against the foe.
I realize from this definition that we may not gain territory in the fight. But when we take a stand, we don’t lose any either. We hold our position when the enemy schemes against us .
Prayer – Lord, putting on the armor of God just took on a whole other meaning to me. It’s not a passive thing that I do at the start of my day, to put on the armor of God. It’s a continual process if I want to stand firm. Help me to apply this to my life now. Help me to teach this to others so that they can stand against the wiles of the enemy. Teach us to stand. Not just in some armor that is more than we understand, but to take an armored stand in the way that Your word tells us to.