Take Up The Whole Armor Of God And Never Take Off Any Single Part Of It

TAKE UP THE WHOLE ARMOR OF GOD AND NEVER TAKE OFF ANY SINGLE PART OF IT
By Pastor Paulus Budiono
Sunday, December 23, 2018


Shalom,
When celebrating the birth of Jesus, the spirit of joy overwhelms all Christians across the globe. After all, the Word of God delivered on this day of joy seems to be in contrast to the Christmas ambience. It simply has nothing to do with Christmas. Is that so? What does the Word has to advise in Ephesians 6: 13? “Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.“
It sounds strange. What does Christmas have to do with the armor for wars? Why does the Apostle Paul, a warrior of Christ, ask the Ephesian believers (and us) to put on the whole armor of God? It is simply because we deal with the evil day (including Christmas Day). This way, we may stand firm in victory.
The Apostle Paul set a good example for us to follow. In his old days in prison prior to his execution, he still reminded the young Timothy, his spiritual child, not to be ashamed of the testimony of the Lord (2 Timothy 1: 8) dan be willing to endure suffering as a good warrior of Christ (v. 12).
Before one dies, they typically prepare their inheritance for their children and grandchildren. However, Paul talked about wars and fighting spirit. Why did he leave figthting spirit as legacy. Because we are confronted with invisible enemies with tremendous power, namely, principalities, powers, the rulers of the darkness of this world, and spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12). A nation, for example, fights to defend its territory and everything in it, including its people.
When does the devil come into sight? The Book of Genesis unfolds the story about the sly serpent (a stereotype of the devil) that persuaded the first people – Adam and Eve – six millennia ago. His persuasion made them fall into sin. God did not create a vacant earth. Didn’t He create it with fauna and flora for Adam and Eve to rule over? Having defeated man, the devil took possession of the earth and ruled over it. As a matter of fact, the devil tempted Jesus, persuading Him to worship him in return for all the kingdoms of the world with its splendor (Matthew 4: 8-9).
Despite all this, the Lord wants us to regain and keep what was (once) ours – marriage, family, work or efforts (Genesis 1: 26-28). He promised that the seed of the woman (Eve) would crush the head of the serpent and that the serpent would crush her heel. In fact, with the birth of Jesus, a war broke out or enmity between Jesus and the devil arouse.
We ought to be sensitive to the devil’s trickery. Please note this: Unlike the omnipresent God who is spirit, the devil cannot show up at different places at the same time. Unfortunately, believers drive the devil out of the church, forgetting the fact that evil spirits are everywhere coordinated by the devil. The devil (only one devil) has extremely huge troops under his command.
When Jesus healed a demom-possessed man, the Pharisees who strongly disliked Him said that Jesus had cast out demons by the help of Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons. Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said all at once, “If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand?” (Matthew 12:22-26). In other words, the devil never fights against his allies (false prophets, false teachers, antichrist and many others). Instead, they are united to destroy and let the spirits of darkness overpower husbands and wives, parents and children as well as masters and servants.
We must lean on the Lord and count on Him at the same time. Aside from that, we must put on the whole armor of God without missing any part of it. That way, we will live a victorious life on a daily basis. The reality is that it is a nuisance for us to carry our weapons around. We feel so highly secured that we do not feel the need for any weapon. Put simply, we do not practice the Word in our daily lives. As a consequence, what happens next? More often than not, husband and wife get caught up in quarrels because of financial problems, children, in-laws and the list goes on and on.
Watch out! Don’t take off the helmet of salvation just because you have faith. Otherwise, your head will not think about salvation. As a result, your brains are not saved and neither are the whole aspects of your lives. The old Simeon saw God’s salvation in Jesus. For this reason, he could leave this world in peace (Luke 2: 28-30).
We must take up the whole armor of God, protecting our bodies from top to toe. Never ever take off any single part of the armor since the devil roams like a roaring lion ready to devour anyone (1 Peter 5: 8).
What or who is our whole armor? It’s the Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 13:12-14). Keep this mind: If God is for us, who can be against us (Romans 8: 31-39)? Jesus became man or flesh with one purpose: To save us to be His own. Once we were saved, we should not be satisfied with our own salvation, ignoring the salvation of our spouse, children and many others. Didn’t God create Adam and Eve (husband and wife) to regenerate (to establish a family) and to rule over the earth (work)?
How did Jesus go through the fighting process to be the victorious Lord Jesus Christ?
 God choses a married couple that loves Him and lives in holiness. According to the Jewish tradition, Joseph and Mary were officially husband and wife. But they did not live in the same house yet. God wanted to make victory happen and recover the earth. Therefore, the angel Gabriel asked Mary not to turn down God’s offer (Luke 1:26, 30-31) and to prepare her womb as “a super powerful weapon” to “crush the head of the serpent” even at the risk of being divorced by her husband. True, Joseph, being an honest man, did plan to leave Mary in secret but the angel prevented his plan from happening (Matthew 1:19-20). The embryo of Jesus still needed God’s strong protection. Being obedient, Joseph married Mary and named the baby son Jesus, meaning, Savior for He would save His people from their sins (Matthew 1: 21) and Immanuel that means God with us (Matthew 1: 23).
A God-blessed marriage must not end in divorce. When your marriage is void of harmony, ask God for His armor and go find the Creator of marriage, that is, the Lord Jesus Christ.
 At the birth of Jesus, the angel along with a vast heavenly army came down praising and watching over His own (Luke 2:13-14). An army is in charge of providing protection, right? In fact, due to
the threat of Herod who killed children (two years and under), Jesus was brought to Egypt. That way, he escaped death (Matthew 2: 13-16).
 As His physical parents raised Him, Jesus grew up and respected them very much. When baptized, He was filled with the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3: 13, 16-17). Then His mature attitude came to light. When tempted by the devil, He had God’s armor on and came out the winner (Matthew 4: 1-10).
Jesus walked from one city and village to another, preaching the Gospel of God’s Kingdom (Luke 8: 1) and performing miracles like healing the sick and casting out multiple evil spirits (a legion) that overpowerd men (vv. 27-30). At that point, Jesus had not totally defeated the devil as His time had not come yet (Matthew 8: 29).
 The devil employed the chief priests and the elders of the Jews alongside the government to crucify Him. On the cross, Jesus was mocked because He could not rescue Himself. They challenged Him to come down from the cross and they would believe in Him (Matthew 27:41). Jesus did go through a horrifying battle because the men He helped did not understand God’s love. When His was broken to pieces, no one came to comfort Him. His disciples left Him. However, He was willing to bear all this in order to be “a perfect weapon”. At the last minute, He took out His “ultimate weapon” and shouted, “It is finished” (John 19:30).
Humanly speaking, He lost the battle (died on the cross). But, it was on Golgotha when He became Lord and Christ (Acts 2: 36).
Let’s put on our helmets of salvation. In doing so, the devil has no chance to divert and destroy our minds as his actions contribute to our total failures. Parents have the responsibility to use the armor for the sake of their minors and to keep their minds protected against the devil’s destructive actions. When bringing up children, do not spoil and provide them with comfort. Instead, raise them with the armor of God’s Word.
Truly, the sword of God’s Word never triggers conflicts. Neither does the Lord judge those who do not know Him yet. He will get furious if a believer sealed with the Holy Spirit makes a fool of the Holy Spirit like what Ananias and Sapphira did which cost them their lives (Acts 5: 1-11).
Do we still believe what the Bible says despite the fact that its writers live no more. Remember that salvation is an idividual (not communal) matter. Anyhow, the armor of God is not meant to cater to a personal need, but rather to protect husband, wife, children, relatives, etc. Knowing that all are one in Jesus Christ, everyone who puts on Christ dislikes discrimination (Galatians 3:26-29).
We are not done with our life’s struggles yet. With this in mind, take up the whole armor of God because the war will not come to an end (Revelation 13, 15, 19) until the devil, the murderer, is cast into the lake of fire and brimestones along with the antichrist, false prophets and those who have rejected repentance.
While we are still alive, we are obliged to think about the salvation of others. In any case, never forget to put on the whole armor of God whenever and wherever we are for the sake of victory. Amin.


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