Put On The Lord Jesus Christ As The Armor Of Light

PUT ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AS THE ARMOR OF LIGHT

By Pastor Paulus Budiono
Lemah Putro, Sunday, December 16, 2018

Shalom,
During the church service, we like singing the song “Victory, healing, deliverance are all here.” After all, do we have victory at home, at school or at work? Being confronted with unusual wars, are we sure that the Lord is present wherever we are? At the birth of Jesus, a huge heavenly army sang praising God. Isn’t the word “army” typically connected to wars?
We have studied and known the whole armor of God. The question is: Is the armor sheer knowledge? Do we keep it lying around for one reason or another? Stay on guard because the devil and his collaborators come and attack us out of the blue without warning. The devil always uses every single opportunity without giving us a chance to get ready before hand. It is a sad thing indeed if we are lazy to take up His armor. Be well-trained warriors of God and stay ready to fight anytime!
It is worth noting that this whole armor serves to protect husbands and wives, parents and children as well as masters and servants (Ephesians 6: 1-9). Their need for protection is not dismissible. With this in mind, we need to know the tricks of the devil with all his deceit. That way, we can take our stand against him with the whole armor of God.
What armor do we need to put on? In Romans 13: 11-14, we read: “ Furthermore, knowing the time, now is the moment to awake from sleep. For now our salvation is nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us take off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave properly, as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in immorality and wickedness, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts.”
We must really know who the Lord Jesus Christ is. Do not act the way Sceva’s children did. They heard of the name of Jesus preached by Paul and used it without knowing who He was. They used their mouths rather than took up the armor of God. What happened next? The evil spirit embarrassed them, saying, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?” He then overpowered them. In the end, they fled naked and wounded (Acts 19: 13-16).
The Word of God is God and the light of men (John 1: 1, 4). Is the light of God present in our married lives? Don’t leave Jesus in the church and miss the light at home and at work. In fact, many married lives and families are in great difficulties. Short-lived marriages end in divorce, not to mention broken relationships (not acknowledged anymore) between parents and children and many other problems. Don’t all these show signs of defeat due to the absence of the armor, namely, the Lord Jesus Christ?
Note that if we do not take up the armor of God, we will have to pay the price. The traffic rule, for example, demands that motorists wear their helmets for safety reason. If they are too lazy to put on
their helmets by reason of discomfort, they will have to bear the consequences when they get caught up in an accident. Their unprotected heads may hit the road or any other vehicle.
Everybody must have their own weapon. Do not use someone elses’s. David, for instance, could not put on Saul’s armor he had never tested before (1 Samuel 17: 38-39). David did gain victory using an ordinary weapon (a sling and a stone) within his reach (v. 49). After that event, however, David must have learned how to master sword fighting in order to be a Commander in chief.
A married couple should at least take up the armor of God with an eye to the victory of their personal lives and that of their family’s. In case one of the couple does not know the Lord yet, his/her life partner should make efforts to bring her/him to the Lord.
Never take off one piece of the whole armor of God out of dislike or discomfort because this indicates that our knowledge of God is not complete. If we take off one piece, let alone two pieces, of His weaponry, it will be tougher to gain victory. It will be more difficult to achieve unity in marriage, especially if we have no armor on or, put simply, dismiss the Lord Jesus Christ. Stay alert as the devil with his deceit adopts similar armor to pull the wool over our eyes.
Let’s take a deeper look at some of the armor of God.
 The Loins of Righteousness
God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are righteousness (Romans 3:21; John 14: 6; 1 John 5:6). The Lord Jesus Christ makes the Triune God complete in righteousness.
What do the loins signify? Humility. This is a tremendous weapon to fight off the devil. We can see this attitude in a servant who stays alert with the loins girded up around his waist while waiting for his master to come home and later prepares his meal (Luke 17: 8).
Jesus also took a towel and when He was about to wash the feet of His disciples, among others, Judas who was planning to “kick Him out” and Peter who felt as if he did not deserve the foot-washing. When told that he would have no part with Him unless He washed his feet, Peter begged Jesus to wash his hands and head as well (John 13: 4-9). It was His humility that made Jesus’ victory come to pass.
Once Paul rebuked Peter because of his hypocrisy. Afraid of being spotted by the Jewish people, Peter withdrew from the fellowship with the gentiles. His hyprocritical attitude impacted Barnabas. Apparently, Peter’s conduct was not in line with the truth of the Gospel (Galtians 1:11-14). He took off his armor of humility in return for respect.
Peter, who denied and refused the foot-washing, finally understood the significance of the loins. Later he wrote in 1 Peter 1: 13, “Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” The phrase “gird up the loins“ implies that our minds need discipline that makes it possible to live in holiness following the redemption (by the blood of Christ) of futile lives.
If we desire victory, we must gird up our loins of righteousness and humility both in our households and ministries alike.
 The Shoes of the Gospel of Peace
Right before their depature from Egypt, God told the Israelites to wear their loins (getting ready) and shoes (Exodus 12: 11). As a matter of fact, their shoes did not wear out throughout their 40-year journey across the wilderness (Deuteronomy 29:5).
Sadly, the old generation had no acess to Canaan due to their unfaithfulness (Numbers 14: 33). In contrast, the young generation comprised soldiers (aged 20 and upward) wearing the shoes of true Gospel on their way to Canaan. Please note that God never keeps “a place” unoccupied. He always finds someone else to occupy the vacant place. Judas Iscariot, for example, got eliminated and Matthias took his place (Acts 1: 26).
We must wear the shoes of peace to resist the devil that uses false peace. In fact, there is no peace since young and old chase profit. Both prophets and priests practiced deception (Jeremiah 6: 13-14). The devil is bending his efforts to kill our souls in the ever-flaming hell. By contrast, God invites us to spread peace like the vast, heavenly army singing the theme of peace on earth among men that please Him (Luke 2: 14).
Let’s not quickly get disheartened when people reject the Gospel we preach. Instead, let’s keep wearing the shoes of peace along the way. Do not act like the gentiles whose hatred easily turns into bloodshed in retaliation for rejection.
On top of that, we must take up the Gospel of salvation. Do not follow the Galatian believers who once used another gospel twisting around the Gospel of Christ (Galatians 1: 6-7). For this reason, the Apostle Paul cursed false evangelists (v. 8).
 The Shield of Faith
Faith comes from hearing the Word of Christ (Romans 10:17). Do not use a small-size shield! It will surely fail to ward off the devil’s arrows by the thousands. When the war broke out in heaven, Michael and his angels fought off the dragon along with his angels (Revelation 12:7).
Let’s take faith seriously (James 2:14) and act on every single verse in the Bible since we are dealing with lies, anger, hatred and the list goes on and on. Adam and Eve fell into sin because their faith was not solid. They could not take their stand against the persuasion of the serpent (Genesis 3:1-6) despite their God-given authority to rule over the earth and everything in it (Genesis 1:28).
We must guard and maintain our shields of faith. The disciples of Jesus begged Him to increase their faith (Luke 17: 5). Jesus prayed for Peter that his faith would not fail and that he would strengthen his fellow disciples (Luke 22: 32). However, Peter felt that his faith was awesome and was even ready to risk his life for Jesus. When He found this out, Jesus foretold Peter that he would one day deny Him (vv. 33-34). Taking up the “whole armor,” Jesus was not impressed by human superiority or inferiority. Obviously, it is the prayer of Jesus that enables us to repent, rather than our own efforts because no one can come to the Father without Him (John 14: 6b).
 The Visor of Salvation
A visor protects our heads (the 5 senses and the minds). The old, devout and righteous Simeon was awating the consolation for the Israelites. The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would die until he saw the Messias. At the point Simeon saw Mary and Joseph bringing the Child Jesus into the Temple, his eyes were opened and he admitted that there was salvation in Jesus Christ (Luke 2:25-32).
Saul hated Jesus, but following his repentance and salvation, he admitted that Jesus was the Son of God (Acts 9:20).
Abimelek appointed himself as king of Schehem after he murdered his 70 brothers, the children of Yerub-Baal, except Yotam who managed to escape the bloodshed (Judges 9:1-6). After his three-year reign in Israel, God provoked the inhabitants of Schehem to revolt against Abimelech in retaliation for the 70 murdered children of Yerub-Baal.
Upon hearing the impending revolution, Abimelekh attempted to exterminate the population of Schehem. One day he came to a fortified tower down town where people were taking shelter. Alongside his men, Abimelech attacked the tower. As he was approaching the gate of the tower to set it on fire, a woman suddenly dropped a millstone which crushed Abimelech’s head (vv. 51-53).
Since the visor of salvation is not a matter of religion, let’s keep wearing it not only in church but also outside the church. God searches our hearts whether or not we just follow religious liturgies or seriously have faith in Him. Please note that charity does not guarantee us salvation. Our faith is our passport to heaven. Instead of bending our minds to earthly matters, let’s, therefore, think about things which are above where Jesus is seated at the right hand of God (Colossians 3:1-2).
God has prepared the whole armor of God for our sake. Let’s take up the armor of righteousness and rock-solid faith to attain peace and salvation until the day when we live together with Him in the New Jerusalem forevermore. Amen.


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