The Armor of God
by Rob Dunne
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:12
I am a big fan of the Star Wars movies. In the second episode, Anakin Skywalker loses his lightsaber while chasing down a bounty hunter. Obi Wan Kenobi retrieves the lightsaber and returns it to his young Padawan learner. He admonishes Anakin to be more careful stating, “This weapon is your life.” Though owning a lightsaber would be incredibly cool, I don’t think it would be very effective in staving off our mortal enemy the devil or his minions. Rather, the best weapon we have as believers is the armor of God.
While in Guatemala on a missions trip, our team ministered to another Connecticut church. Observing what we did, they joined us in prayer. That night, teens and their leaders did serious battle against the enemy. Foolishly, I neglected to say a cleansing prayer over them or to warn of how the enemy might come against them that night. I failed to point them to the armor of God to protect them.
At breakfast the next day, I watched wounded warriors returning from the front line. The students shared stories of horrific nightmares and physical attacks that left them fearful and shaken. Fortunately, another leader and I were able to meet with them and explain what happened. I took ownership of the fact that I did not pray for cleansing and a hedge of protection around them at the conclusion of the ministry time. We then gave the students the tools they would need for their next encounter with the enemy.
In Ephesians 6:10-19, Paul tells us that we do not battle against flesh and blood. Our fight is a spiritual one involving beings and powers that cannot be seen with the natural eye. Thankfully, God has equipped us with truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit. The last one is my personal favorite because it is for offense as well as defense. Assisting the Lord in taking back ground from the enemy is invigorating!
The mission field is not the only place where we encounter the enemy. Spiritual attack can happen at work, the grocery store, the local bike path and even church. With the dawning of each new day, we must remember to put on the full armor of God. Have you put on yours today?
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