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The Armor of God - Part 2

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
May 24, 2023 12:00 am

The Armor of God - Part 2

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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May 24, 2023 12:00 am

Stand against Satan by putting on the full armor of God.


Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Wednesday, May 24th. Are you in the habit of spending regular time alone with God? You need it to stand firm in the spiritual battles. Here's the final lesson in the believers warfare. Well, in the sixth chapter of Ephesians, if you'll turn there, you'll find a very clear command that our Lord gives us here in the sixth chapter, because here the Apostle Paul is dealing with what you and I have to deal with every day, and that is spiritual warfare. And so he begins here in this 13th verse saying, Therefore, on the basis of the kind of enemy we have, he says this is the kind of armor and this is the kind of weapons we're to have. Since we're talking about spiritual warfare, we're also talking about spiritual armor. So he says, verse 13, Therefore, take up the full armor of God that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything to stand firm. We saw before that he said we have to be strong in the Lord, standing firm and standing against the schemes, the strategy, the cunning efforts of Satan. Then he describes this armor. So I want us to look at it from the Roman soldier's point of view, what it means, and then practically, how do I apply what the Apostle Paul said on a daily basis? Because, you see, he's not just writing to be writing a story.

Here's what he says. He says we are to put on the full armor of God. And so what happens is not only must we know some truth, we must know how to use the word of God. How do we use the word of God in defending ourselves against satanic attacks? How do we use the word of God in sharing with someone else? We must study it.

A soldier studies and trains. When a man goes to war with a rifle, listen, he is taught to be able to dismantle it, to take it apart with his eyes closed or blindfolded or in the dark, and also to put it back together in the dark, where he cannot see anything, but he knows by its part. It's amazing to me that how many Bibles people have. They say, oh, man, I got a King James, New King James, New American Stand, Living Bible, Application Bible, Discovery Bible, and New English Bible, got all these Bibles. The question is not how many weapons I have.

The question is, do I know how to operate any one of them? Listen, you can have a whole stack of Bibles and be totally ignorant unless you use it, unless you get into it, unless you find out how it works. And somebody says, well, you know, I haven't been to seminary.

How do I know? You don't have to go to seminary. You know, all you have to do to learn the Bible is just start reading it. Listen, I've met some saints who knew a whole who knew a whole lot more about the scriptures in those days and probably do now than I do. And you know what?

You know what they've been doing all these years? Just reading the Bible, asking God to speak to their heart. Listen, God never said you had so much education to understand the word of God. My grandfather never went past the sixth grade and he'd preach out at the time, never look at any notes and quote scripture coming and going. And I'd happen to have his old Bible. And I'll tell you, the only thing in that Bible is a few marks.

Now, mine's written all over and all colored up and everything else. He had a few little pencil marks in there and he just preached the gospel. Listen, he knew the word of God. And it wasn't because he went to school.

It was because he got on his knees and talked to God, cried out to God and asked God to teach him. How do I use the weapon of my warfare against Satan and against his forces in order to rescue people from sin and enslavements of all type? You've got to know how to use it. You see, it's one thing to have it. It's something else to know what it says. Listen, you'll never master the Bible. There's no such thing. Anybody says, well, I know the word of God.

Well, excuse me, because I don't believe anybody can say absolutely honest. Well, I know the word of God. We know some things it teaches. But what God wants us to know, he wants us to know the God of the Bible. He wants us to know him. But he does want us to know how to use this. How do we will this? Listen, how do I use this to defend myself against the devil? How do I use this to defend myself against error, against false teaching, against false teachers? How do I use this to bring somebody out of captivity to Jesus? How do I use this to bring somebody out of depression, to bring somebody out of great discord in their life and to bring somebody out of great sorrow in their life, to encourage them? The word of God is applicable to every circumstance of life.

It is absolutely adequate in every circumstance. You and I have a weapon. We don't ever have to shield this thing because every day of our life, we need to be utilizing and wielding the weapon that God has given us for defensive as well as offensive. Now, let's go back in verse thirteen to notice what he says. Therefore, he says, take up the full armor of God that you may be able to resist in the evil day and having done everything to stand firm.

Now watch this. Stand firm, therefore. And he lists all this armor. Then he says in verse eighteen, with all prayer and petition, pray at all times in the spirit. And with this in view, being on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.

Now, let me just say this. You can have all the armor you want to, but friend, if you don't know how to pray, you're going down. It is in prayer that you and I, in talking to the father and listening to him, it is when you and I on our face before God, crying out to him, what happens? There is a power. There is a spiritual strength. There is a spiritual power that comes into a person's life when they humble themselves before God, crying out to God and begin to learn how to pray and talk to the father.

There's something there. Listen, that will never be there any other way but learning to pray. No other way. And so it's not an accident that he said he didn't just say now let's pray. He said with all prayer.

What is he saying? He says not only with all this armor are we to stand firm and draw our strength from him. He says, but with all prayer, look at this, with all prayer and petition, we're to do what? He says this is the way we are to pray.

We're to be in prayer all the time. He says, listen, at all times in the spirit, that does not mean speaking in tongues. And you'll hear people say, well, I'm praying in the spirit and they give me a lot of this stuff. But I understand that that's what they want to believe. I have to leave that to their belief system.

And I'm not arguing and fussing with them about that. I'm just simply saying that's not what that means when he talks about praying in the spirit. I am praying, listen, in absolute submission to the spirit of God so that my prayer. Listen, my prayer is the expression of the spirit of God in me and through me to the father. Praying at all times in the spirit, in absolute submission to the spirit of God. What we're saying is I want the spirit of God who is in control of my life to voice through me to the father, to cry out to the father what he knows needs to be prayed. And sometimes you'll find yourself praying for someone and you'll wonder why you're praying that.

God knows exactly because that's exactly what they need. He says, listen, it's not enough to have the armor on. He says, praying at all times in the spirit with this in view. He says, look, be on the alert, being sensitive with all perseverance. We don't just pray a little bit. We hang in there and keep on praying. He says, for all the saints, it's to be unselfish.

And Paul says, I want you to pray for me. If we're going to withstand the onslaught, the assaults and the attacks, the satanic attacks that Satan is going to attack us with. If we're going to stand with those, we must not only be dressed in the armor. We've got to be praying people.

And what he's saying here is this. If you and I are going to face our enemy victoriously, we must indeed have the girdle of truth and walk in it. We must have our emotions protected by the breastplate of righteousness. We must be standing firm in the gospel truth. He says, we must have the shield of faith to be operating out of faith, not out of feeling. He says, and the helmet of salvation to protect what we think and the sword of the spirit.

He says, that's not enough. He says, praying always with all perseverance for the saints. Praying in the spirit, in submission to the spirit of God. If somebody said to me, well, what would be the greatest asset you could have in life?

I'd simply say this, and I've known this a long time ago. The greatest asset I can have is somebody who walks holy before God, who loves Almighty God, and who will love me and call my name before the Father and cry out to God in my behalf. That is the greatest asset I could possibly have. Listen, every single pastor needs that. And my friend, if you don't pray for your pastor, I want to encourage you. Listen, if you want him to preach the gospel, you want him to feed your soul, to feed your life, then you ought to be crying out to God, God, speak to my pastor's heart, God, protect my pastor, teach him the word, make him aware of my needs so that when he stands up on Sunday, whatever he says is going to apply to my heart. Show me how to receive from him your word, dear God.

Paul says, above all, the shield of faith. He says, with all prayer and supplication and petition. Why? Because, my friend, there is no way in this world you and I will be able to live a godly life if we are not praying men and women.

It's just not going to happen. And I don't have to tell you this. You know this as well as I do. You just slack off on your praying. You just get real, real busy and not a few days go by and say, well, you know, I just don't have time. I'll tell you.

I don't even have to tell you. You already know when you stop praying, Satan starts being victorious in your life. That's just a hard, cold fact about living. Why? Because, listen, he doesn't care a thing in the world about a church as long as they don't pray. As long as the folks aren't praying, he doesn't care. He doesn't care what else they do.

Why? Because they have no power. Where there's no prayer, there is no power. Listen, if you want the power of God in your life, you've got to spend time on your knees.

Listen, listening to God, being quiet. Now, I want to tell you something. There are a lot of things in life that I'm grateful for, but I don't know of anything in life I am more grateful for than to know that Almighty Sovereign God loves me enough to single me out and say, I've got something I want to say to you.

I don't know of anything any more wonderful in life than that. You see, he is so willing to speak to us. If you want to defeat the devil, you've got to get on your knees. And if somebody says, well, you don't have to get on your knees to pray.

No, you don't. But I can tell you one thing. If you're so proud, too proud to get on your knees, your prayers standing up won't do much good. He says, humble ourselves before Almighty God. When I think about humbling myself before God, I want to get on my face because I am unworthy to stand in the presence of absolute perfect holiness and talk to this holy God about my life and cry out to him and believe him and know that he is so absolutely personal and intimate.

He is willing to stop you dead in your tracks and lead you, move you to do exactly what he wants you to do. And I'll tell you something. I could have gone on. So I got to study.

And that's just a feeling I have. And I'm here to tell you, you know what? I just sat there and fumbled and looked and read and tried to make the computer work.

That probably would have fallen apart. But I mean, you know, God knows how to stop everything going because I've been there. There have been times when I thought, oh, I just got to get with this and I don't have time to pray right now. You know what I've learned? You might as well just stop because you're not going to listen if God tells you to get on your face.

Anything you do until you do it is a waste of time. I cannot tell you how important that is. It is absolutely essential.

It is essential to our living. You cannot live victoriously. You cannot withstand the onslaughts of one who knows us as well as he does when there are areas of weakness in all of our life until we listen. If we're not praying, people will be a defeated people. And I'd rather have a little church that prays a whole lot than a big church that doesn't pray any. Listen, give me give me give me a handful of people who know how to talk to God. And that's enough because I know that God is going to hear the prayers of his children. Listen, God works among his people in answer to their prayers.

And friend, I want to say this to you. You neglect your prayer life. Satan is coming in because, listen, in fact, if you ask the devil, if you could ask the devil to say, what is the one thing you don't want me to do about everything else?

That's exactly what it is. Stop your prayer. Stop talking to God.

That's what he'd say. Stop all that foolishness wasting your time over here talking to God. You know that there are people who are believers who think it's a waste of time? Well, why do you want to get out and pray? Brother, you're talking about shouting to me that they're ignorant.

That's the biggest shout of ignorance I know of. You mean to tell me that you think talking to Almighty God is a waste of time? Talking to Almighty God, as I have discovered in my life, is the greatest time saver in my life.

It is the greatest time saver. It will do what nothing else in all of life will do. There is something about private devotion and you getting along with Almighty God. I don't care what Satan's throwing at you. Listen, you get on your face before Almighty God and listen, you and God make a majority on your face before him. No matter what Satan throws at you, you can stand and withstand it no matter what.

Stay off your face. Get up off your knees. Do it your own way and your own strength and your own power and go on down. And so the reason Paul ends this whole scripture, this whole idea about putting on the armor of God is because he knows. He says, listen, above all, praying always, he says, persevering, hanging in there. Don't just give a little prayer and then just get up and quit. And you say, well, now, what good does it do just to lie on your face or kneel and not say anything? I'll tell you what good it does. It gives God a chance to say something. And friend, I don't know about you, but I'd much rather listen to him than me or you. Amen. I'd much rather listen to him.

You know why? He's going to tell me the truth every time he's going to tell me what I need to know. He's going to tell me about himself.

He's probably going to tell me some things about myself. One thing I know, he always speaks the truth and he always speaks in love and he always speaks for our benefit. And oftentimes I thought about this passage when I'd be alone praying and maybe struggling about something and thinking about the fact. The truth is, here's where you could interpret this passage. When will Satan attack you the most in prayer? What is it he wants to remove from your life? Prayer.

So therefore, here's how you and I could interpret this passage and be legitimate. Then Paul is saying, get ready for prayer. How do you get ready for prayer? You get ready for prayer by putting on your armor, because when you get serious about praying, Satan's going to get serious about defeating you. So how do you get ready to pray? You put on the girdle of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, feet shod with the gospel, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, sword of the Spirit. Then you get out to pray. Now I'm ready to pray. You could look at it that way.

Now let's make it real practical for a moment. You say, all right, now wait a minute. We're talking about spiritual things, no such thing as a helmet of salvation, a breastplate of righteousness, all right? I want you to think about this. Do you know I still get letters from people? And I preached a sermon about this years and years ago, probably about 10 years ago. Every once in a while I'll meet somebody who'll say, I'm still putting on the armor, because here's what I said and I do believe this is true. You wake up in the morning and before you get out of bed, let me ask you. Satan doesn't have to wait until you get on the expressway to attack you, does he? He doesn't wait for that.

He can attack you when you wake up in the morning. I want you to think about something. You wake up tomorrow morning and you say, Father, I just want to thank you for a good night's rest and maybe you didn't have a good one, but just thank him anyway. And so here's what you say. By faith, I'm putting on the girdle of truth. I'm going to walk in the truth that I know today. I'm putting on the breastplate of righteousness because I want you to protect my emotions. I'm putting on the sandals of peace because I want to stand on the firm foundation of the gospel by which I've been saved and which I'm willing to defend and proclaim. By faith, I'm taking the shield today to ward off all of Satan's fiery darts of temptation. And I'm putting on the helmet of salvation right now because I want you to protect my thinking all day long.

I'm taking the sword of the Spirit, your word, and I want to use it as a defensive weapon and as an offensive weapon today, maybe to bring somebody out of enslavement and bring them to a saving knowledge of Jesus. So, Father, I want to thank you that I'm dressing for the battle. I'm getting ready to walk out of here. I'm getting ready to start the day.

I want to start it. I want to begin the day dressed for the confrontation, ready for the battle, ready for the conflict I'm going to face. Now, you say, well, now what difference would that make?

I challenge you to try it. Before you get out of the bed tomorrow morning, some of you already know that you're going to face something tomorrow this week that's going to be tough on you. Well, then here's what you do. You get dressed up. If you're going to war, you wear armor.

Every single day, you and I are in a battle. What does God want? He wants us spiritually dressed for the battle.

He wants us ready for the conflict, which says simply, in essence, what? I'm to be sensitive about the truth. I'm to be sensitive about my emotions, and I'm to be sensitive about where I walk and what my foundation is all about and what I do with it.

I'm to be sensitive. Listen, I'm to walk in faith, trusting Him to be my divine protector. I am to walk, trusting Him to protect my mind, because I want to think the right things.

I want His Word to be an ever-living part of everything that's going on in my life. And Father, we love you and praise you that you've not left us to go to battle improperly dressed and unarmed, properly dressed, fully armed, and above all, in prayer, trusting you, believing you, looking to you, listening to you for direction. Thank you, dear God, for the wonderful promise that we can have the victory no matter how fierce the battle. And we ask this in Jesus' name. Amen. Thank you for listening to Part 2 of The Armor of God. If you'd like to know more about Charles Stanley or In Touch Ministries, stop by This podcast is a presentation of In Touch Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-24 06:41:05 / 2023-05-24 06:49:51 / 9

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