In Ephesians 6:15
FEET WITH THE
term "shod" is the Greek word that simply means strapping on
your sandals. The Roman soldier wore sandals called caliga, which
were thickly studded sandals with cleats on the bottom of them. Those
cleats were to dig in
and stand in the face of battle. That is what the
sandals were made for.
The verb "having shod" is an
which means do it
on your own accord. Donít need someone else to make you feel guilty if you
are not doing it. Do it because Jesus means something to you. Do it
because you have a high view of salvation. Do it because God says to do
it. That is the only way we are ever to obeyóbecause God said it and out
of our love for Him.
The word "PREPARATION" gives us the meaning of what he is saying here.
What does it mean? The word "preparation" is the Greek word that refers to
the basis of something, to the foundation of something, to the firm
footing of something. What does this imply? It implies a firm and solid
understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This is what causes me to dig
in. When the devil comes at me with all of his deception, I have an
understanding and a grasp and am rooted and firmly founded upon what the
By the way, much of that deception is in the church. Much of that
deception comes by the people of the cloth. I have an understanding of
that. I have been prepared by that understanding. Then I can stand firm in
the midst of all of his deception. In other words, the cleats on the
believerís sandals is a firm grasp on what the gospel of Jesus Christ is
all about. It is a gospel of peace
click for discussion of "peace").
The book of Colossians 2:6 (note)
have received Christ Jesus the
Lord, so walk in Him,"
Paul said in
1Corinthians 15:1-5 that Jesus died and lived a
sinless life. He died, was buried and raised from the dead, ascended and
I make known to you, brethren, the gospel
which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand,
2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached
to you, unless you believed in vain.
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that
Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day
according to the Scriptures,
5 and that He appeared to Cephas,
then to the twelve.
Yes, that is the gospel, the good news of Jesus
Christ. But the gospel for the person who has received it has a step two.
Step two is the living out of that gospel. If I donít understand how I am
saved, then I have no clue how I am supposed to live.
There are many people who donít have a firm grasp on what salvation is all
about. They have no high view of Christ. They have no high view of
salvation. They donít understand when you get saved you are drastically,
radically transformed. You are made into a brand new creature. The Holy
Spirit of God comes into your life. You can no longer habitually sin and
call yourself a believer. You canít live lawlessly,
1John 3:4-10 tells us. John writes that...
4 Everyone who practices
sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.
5 And you know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him
there is no sin.
6 No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins (continually, as
their habitual practice) has seen Him or knows
7 Little children, let no one
you; the one who practices
righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous;
8 the one who practices (continually) sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from
the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might
destroy the works of the devil.
9 No one who is born of God practices (continually) sin, because His seed abides in him;
and he cannot (habitually commit) sin, because he is born of God.
10 By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious:
anyone who does not practice righteousness
is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother.
There is something uniquely different about us. We were saved by
abandoning ourselves. "God, I repent of my ways. I receive you into my
heart. I am a sinner. I have missed the mark. God, thank you for what You
have done for me." That is the way you live, moment by moment by moment.
There are a lot of people, Paul says
who started off in the Spirit and who are now trying to accomplish
righteousness in the flesh
"Are you so
foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the
That is why the whole book of Galatians was written. If you donít have a
grasp of salvation, if you donít have a grasp of the gospel of peace
(peace meaning to be able to walk in such a relationship that there is
nothing in between that causes friction), then you are going to get messed
up in warfare. You are going to get off on every tangent you can think of.
Having your feet shod means being fully grasped and firmly rooted into an
understanding of what the gospel is all about.
Boy, there are a lot of people saying a lot of things about the gospel of
Jesus Christ that really causes grief in my own heart. To some people the
gospel and receiving the gospel is no more than joining a church. It is
something you do and then some day you reap the reward of it. It is like
purchasing an insurance policy except that it is a free one. You get a
free insurance policy from hell. They think that is all the gospel is
about. Folks, we need to rethink what the gospel is. We need to understand
from Ephesians what the gospel means. A person who has received it must
have a firm grasp of it. Just because a person prays a prayer does not
mean he has received the gospel.
Just because a person prays a prayer
does not mean he or she has received the gospel.
What he prays doesnít save him. It is what he knows in his heart and what
he expresses in his heart. God knows the heart of a man when he is
surrendered to Him. When he is bankrupt, when he recognizes his utter
hopelessness and sees what Jesus has done for him, he understands his life
compared to what God requires. It is filthy rags. Then he cries out and
"Oh, God. Thank you for paying a debt that you didnít owe when I owed a
debt that I couldnít pay."
The overwhelming gratitude of that salvation begins to formulate a motive
of living day by day for what God has done in a personís life.
You see, there are all kinds of deception in this world. I need to go out
first of all with my loins girded with truth. I need to be so committed to
truth that I can recognize error and I can be appalled by deceit and
recognize when the devil is trying to lie to me, when the devil is trying
to send me a message that didnít come from God and didnít come from His
word. This will cause me to live a lifestyle of righteousness which will
become a breastplate to protect my heart and my motivations in life. Also
this will give me a firm grasp and a grip on what salvation is all about,
the gospel of peace, how it is received, how it is lived in my life.
I wish sometimes that we could just ask,
"What do you think about the
gospel of Jesus Christ?"
and let people stand up and say what they think
the gospel of Jesus Christ is.
It is not only the death, burial and
resurrection of Jesus
but how it is received and how it is lived out in
the life of a believer.
It is incredible the misunderstanding of this. I
have been saying for years that people who get messed up in warfare are
people who do not understand the Christ-life. They do not understand the
gospel. They do not understand the high view we ought to have of
salvation. They do not understand being transferred from the kingdom of
darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son, taken out of Adam and put into
Christ. They donít grasp it. Because they donít grasp it, they are wide
open to losing their salvation. They are wide open to every avenue you can
think of that will undermine what God could have given them to give them a
firm footing in the gospel of peace. We have to have that firm grasp on
what the gospel of peace is all about.
Fourthly, in Ephesians 6:16 it says,
"in addition to
all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to
extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one."
faith" really got my
attention. The definite article
is used. It is "the faith". You see in all of the equipment we have
seen so far that there is no moveable equipment. In other words, these are
immoveable pieces that we
put on. Now we come to something that can be moved. It is a weapon, but it
is a defensive weapon. It is called the
faith". In the King James Version it
says, "Above all, taking up the shield of faith." The New American
Standard says, "In addition to all." Literally in the Greek it says, "In
all." I get the idea from the word "all" that it means in everything,
taking up the shield of faith. Perhaps you will see what I am talking
about in a minute.
"in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you
will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one."
up (word study)" is an
active participle. It describes a soldier lifting
up the shield to defend himself against the things that are coming at him.
It describes a soldier taking up a shield and letting that shield protect
him from the things that are coming at him. The definite article again is
used. Like I said, it is taking up the shield of the faith.
Putting it in simple terms, what does that mean? It means everything
believed about the faith, the faith being the gospel of Jesus Christ, the
faith summarizing all the things we know from Godís Word. It is everything
believed and everything that is shown to be believed by our obedience to
the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
HOW DO I
TAKE UP THE SHIELD OF FAITH?
Now let me explain that to you. The bottom line is how do I take up the
shield of faith?
By my willingness to obey the gospel which is not just
the life, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. It goes all the way
through it. All of Scripture is the good news from Christ, what Christ has
done for us and how we are to live in Him. When I am willing to obey what
His Word has to say, that act of obedience consistent in my life becomes
like a shield to a Roman soldier in a battle. You have to realize this.
you want to be protected against the deceitfulness of Satan, then like I
have said over and over and over again, surrender. Obey. Through that
obedience, that loving obedience, that becomes like a shield in the face
of the devilís deceit. It is obeying Christ in everything.
The shield mentioned is the kind referred to as a "door
shield". There were two kinds of shields they used in battle. One was a
small shield they would hold up and ward off things but that is not the word
that is used here. The word that is used here is
a different shield. If
you have seen pictures of the Roman battles, you probably noticed the huge shields that looked like a door.
These shields looked like they had taken a closet door off, put a handle
on the back of it and walked out into battle with it. When you look at the
door in front of a soldier, you canít even see the soldier. With this kind
of shield the soldiers could crouch behind, protected as they marched forward. This
would ward off all the flaming missiles that were coming at them.
In ancient warfare, the enemy would wrap the arrows with flammable
material, dip it in pitch, set it on fire and shoot these flaming arrows
at the enemy. Now here is the picture Paul is drawing for us. First, I am
to obey God. Then when the devil throws his flaming missiles at me,
because I have purposed to obey the Lord Jesus at all costs in everything,
that obedience becomes like a shield to ward off the flaming missiles
coming in, even extinguishing those flaming missiles.
The picture I want you to see is this. It is kind of like Scud missiles in
the first Gulf War against Iraq. Those missiles we being randomly
launched, without warning. You have got to retain this picture in your
mind if you want to be successful in this spiritual war.
Don't misunderstand what Paul is saying. He is not saying that devil
personally takes time to come after just you. The devil is one creation
and can only be in one place at one time, as we learn from the book of Job
said to the devil...
"From where do you
come?" Then Satan answered the LORD and said, "From roaming about on the
earth and walking around on it."
Job1:7, Torrey's Topic "The
If the devil was walking to and fro he cannot be everywhere at all
times. God is omnipresent, but the devil is not. The point is that his
minions, the demonic forces, are sending "Scud missiles" constantly and
yet at random. It
is not so much that the devil is coming after me personally. These
"flaming missile" thoughts are everywhere in our fallen world.
And so everywhere you go the flaming missiles are coming in at all times. There is no time that
you can let down.
Talk to the veterans of the Vietnam war and the
Gulf War. You will find that those on the front line could not let down
their guard because they never knew when the missiles might come
in. They had to be ready, alert and aware at all times.
In summary then, what is it that protects me?
It is my attitude of obedience.
"God, I am going to obey You regardless of what comes at me."
When that is my
becomes like a protecting shield. My faith is expressed by my willingness
to obey. Donít misunderstand.
Faith and obedience
Cannot be separated
What I believe I obey. I show you what I believe by how I live, not by
what I say. So that act of obedience becomes like a door shield in front
of me and wards off the fiery darts of the enemy.
Let me explain. The fiery darts, the flaming missiles of
the evil one, give us a picture of how the devil works in our life. I
think the battle is in the mind. As we think, so are we. Our enemy is
trying to deceive us as John says in the Revelation...
"And the great dragon was thrown down,
the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives
(present tense = continually) (Click
the whole world; he was thrown down to
the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him."
He is constantly trying to lead us astray with wrong thinking. What would
the darts be wrapped up in? To me it would have to be thoughts that he is
constantly throwing at us. These thought are like "Scud missiles" coming into
our mind. We
canít turn on the television without these "fiery missiles" bombarding our living
room. We canít walk into the world without these thoughts bombarding our
mind. So as those things are coming in, we must make a
conscious choice to adhere to the truth. Then you can recognize the
deception and error. Secondly you have to obey the truth that you are
adhering to. Your willingness to obey wards off those darts that are
Friend, listen, you are up against an enemy that wants to get your
If he can lock it up and hold it hostage with immoral thoughts, he will do
If he can lock it up with anger, he will do it. If he can lock it up with
resentment, he will do it.
Youíve got to make up your mind. Are you going to obey God or are you
going to listen and receive the incoming flaming missiles of the evil one?
They are randomly shot at all times. They are coming in at all times.
Constantly we are being bombarded with those thoughts. Young people,
please understand what I am saying. Youíve got to learn now. You will pay
for the wrong choices that you make with consequences. We choose to obey
and refuse what those thoughts are coming in, those fiery darts of the
was partially made of leather, and it was soaked in water before they
would even go into battle. Why? So it would immediately quench. Have you
ever taken a match, licked your fingers and put it out? Get that thought
in your mind the next time the devil throws one of them at you. You say,
"No way, devil," and just put it out. Just extinguish it right on the
Folks, we have to learn that we are in a war all the time. I guarantee you
there are people in the church who have not had their loins girded about
with truth. They donít care about the Word of God. They donít even study
it. They donít want to study it. They would rather just go out, do
something and then ask God to forgive them. They have been deceived by
error. They think we can go on and live any way we want, go to church on
Sunday and get everything right. No, that practice is not found in the
Word of God. These people have believed a lie and what I am saying right
now is irritating to them. Iíll tell you why it is irritating. Because
they donít understand the battle.
You are in a battle all the time. Youíve got to learn to choose between
what is truth and what is deceit in this world. He will throw those things
at random. Listen, fire destroys. A flaming missile when it is allowed to
lodge, doesnít just inflict a wound. The flame destroys everything in the
territory in which it landed. You must remember that. One of the heights
of spiritual ignorance is to think you can never fall into temptation.
Listen, if you start receiving what the devil is throwing at you and if
you are not going to get into the Word of God, if you are just going to
play around and do church until Jesus comes back, I want to tell you
something, friend, he is going to destroy some things in your life. He
will destroy your family. He will destroy relationships.
Friend, if you think this warfare is something that is just a subject to
be debated at a seminar, you donít understand what the Christian life is
all about. That is why the apostle Paul says,
"Finally, I am going to put it in a context now that you can understand.
You had better put that garment on. You are in a war zone."
That garment becomes your weapon against the devil who is throwing them at
all times and you never know where it is going to come from. You have to
be purposed in your heart to obey Him. You have to have that shield of
faith up in front of you.
Now look at what we have seen as a progression so faróa commitment to
truth by having our loins girded about with truth, a surrender to Jesus by
having put on the breastplate of righteousness, firm footing in the
gospel, which means that our feet are shod with the preparation of the
gospel of peace and our obedience to Christ has been purposed in our heart
which means now we have taken up the shield of faith.
Folks, we have talked about it for many years. Sometimes it goes right
over our heads and we donít understand what we are saying. We are in a war
zone and it is a battle for our minds. As a man thinks, so will he also
do. God wants to renew your mind. That is why it starts with a total
commitment to truth. That is what strengthens us so we can stand in the
face of the onslaught of the devil.
WE ARE IN A WAR ZONE AND
IT IS A BATTLE FOR OUR MINDS
Friend, you are in a war zone. You were born into the kingdom of darkness.
Listen, what is going on in your life? I guarantee you one thing, we have
a lot of wounded saints because in battle we let our shield down and
receive the flaming darts of the wicked one. You had better make up your
mind when you go out tomorrow. They are going to come in like Scud
missiles. When I choose to obey Christ, at that moment I am protected from
the onslaught of the evil one. The battle is not a power struggle. It is a
truth struggle. Am I going to adhere to it or am I not? If I am not, I am
going to reap the consequences.
Donít think you are not in a war zone, folks. You had better get serious
about it and get serious quick because he is so subtle you donít even see
him. He is an invisible enemy, as we will see later on. You canít even see
him. He is constantly bombarding your mind with thoughts that are
deceptive and will lead you down a path of destruction like you would not
believe. When you receive those thoughts, those arrows, they are burning
and they destroy everything around the place they have been received.
Folks, if we would just get honest, every one of us have received them at
times in our life. The damage they have done we all understand. Letís
donít ever relax the standard.
Sometimes when I preach, people say I am too hard. Nobody can live it.
Listen, folks, none of us have arrived. We are pilgrims together. But we
are never going to water down Godís standard. You know why? Because in the
book of Ephesians we have been told we can live it. Donít let anybody ever
tell you that you canít. If you say you canít, what you are saying is, you
wonít. God has a standard and has given us His Spirit so that we can
conform to that standard. That means righteousness, which we have already
studied. That is the armored threads in the garment of the new life.
Arenít you glad He puts the word "mercy" in Scripture? Do you know what
that means? It is Godís divine ability to bear up under the consequences
of stupid choices in your life. I am telling you, when you start realizing
what salvation is all about, it will overwhelm you. We have a lot of
people with scarred lives. Arenít you glad for the mercy of God that lets
tomorrow be the first day of the rest of your life? Donít receive those