Saturday, June 20, 2015

Weapons of choice

"Armor of God" Illustrator 
of Henry Davenport Northrop's 
'Treasures of the Bible', 1894

Armor of God
TODAY'S SPECIAL: 1 Samuel 17:41-58

TO CHEW ON: "Then David said to the Philistine, 'You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.'" 1 Samuel 17:45

I don't think it was the sling that was David's most powerful weapon. Rather, it was the spiritual armor he wore and used. The "name of the Lord of Hosts" was both motivation, defense and offense to David. Defending God's honor against Goliath's blasphemy was reason enough to volunteer his life. God's strong name served as protection and tested weapon. The sling was just the physical weapon God chose to use in this case to win a physical and spiritual battle.

Spiritual weapons take various forms in the Bible.

  • Jesus, when Satan tempted Him, talked about living by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4).
  • Paul described the armor of God in detail in Ephesians 6:10-20. The sword—that part of the armor that not only defends but also takes new territory—is the word of God (Ephesians 6:7).
  • Hebrews 4:12 tells us about that Word-sword in more detail. The writer calls it living, powerful, sharp, piercing, dividing and laying bare soul and spirit, thoughts and intentions.
  • In Paul's view of battle, the fight begins in our own minds. He tells the Corinthian Christians to use spiritual weapons, especially that Word-sword, to pull down strongholds and arguments, and to bring every thought captive to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:4,5).

What battles are we facing today? Is God's honor at stake in them? If we are known as His, His children, on His side, eager for Him to have a good reputation, then it is.

Have we subjected our own selves—our thoughts and motives—to the sword of God's word?

Then, sure of our cause and motives, we can use those spiritual weapons to fight our battles too, trusting God to take our ineffectual physical weapons, our pathetic slings whatever they are, and transform them into effective and dangerous stones, bullets, bombs, missiles. 

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to see the spiritual aspect of the battles in my life, and to learn how to use spiritual weapons. May they be my "tested" weapons of choice. Amen.

MORE: The attitude of the warrior

One aspect of spiritual warfare I didn't mention above is prayer. It is the attitude of alertness, persistence and constant connection with our Commander with which all weapons (spiritual and physical) should be wielded:

"Pray in the Spirit at all times  and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere." - Ephesians 6:18
Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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