Every moment of every day we are at war. In his letter to the church of Ephesus, Paul tells them to put on the full armor of God. Today, we’re going to take a look at putting on the full armor of God, when we should do it, and what it means.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Ephesians 6:10-17 (NIV)

Let’s take a moment and consider the “day of evil” (13) What is the day of evil? Is it some special day having to do with the Apocalypse? I don’t see the day of evil as being any special day or part of a special time. In this same letter to the Ephesians, Paul just told the Ephesians:

Pay careful attention, then, to how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, redeeming the time because the days are evil.

Ephesians 5:15-16 (NIV)

If the days are evil, then Paul is telling us to put on the full armor of God every day.

We put on on the armor of God to be strong in the Lord (10). We put on the armor so we can stand against the schemes of the devil (11). What are the schemes of the devil? John 10:10 tells us “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (NIV). The thief Jesus is talking about here isn’t the devil. It’s those teachers who falsely teach about salvation. However, those who are false teachers are working against God by spreading lies that appear to be the truth, to those who don’t know any better.

In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul has this to say about false teachers and apostles.

For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.

1 Corinthians 13-15 (NIV)

Since false teachers are servants of the devil, masquerading as servants of righteousness we need to put on the full armor of God because this is just one of the devil’s schemes. This is why we need the belt of truth in our lives (14). It’s only when we know the truth of God that we can see things for how they really are. The breastplate of righteousness is the righteousness of Christ (14). It’s not through the law or following other rules that we are made righteous. It’s by faith in Jesus Christ. This breastplate guards our hearts against spiritual attack.

Losing your balance while in battle can mean the difference between life and death. Having our feet fitted with the gospel of peace means we’re not going to be swayed by the traps and pitfalls in life (15). Every day we walk out into the world where death and destruction reign. We see and experience all sorts of things that are contrary to God. However, as we go forth, with the peace that passes all understanding, we can speak the word of God boldly and walk in His peace knowing He has us covered.

The shield of faith allows us to deflect the lies from the devil. When the devil tells us God isn’t going to do what He said He would do, we know otherwise because of our faith in Him (16).

Just like the breastplate guards our hearts, the helmet of salvation guards our minds with the knowledge that we are saved by the grace of God (17). The grace of God allows us to take captive the thoughts we receive all day long that are contrary to God. Coupled with the belt of truth, we can discern the difference between the truth and lies that might otherwise lead us astray.

The sword of the Spirit is just what it says, the word of God. Everything else we have in the armor of God is used to defend us while the sword allows us to speak the word of God. It was by His word that all things were created. Heaven and earth will pass away but His word remains forever. God’s word never fails. When we speak the truth of God in His word we’re piercing any darkness we encounter with the word of Truth. When we hear lies about ourselves and about God we can speak His word that is the truth.

After we put on the armor of God each day we are to pray in the Spirit (Ephesians 6:18). We can’t put on the armor of God and then neglect prayer. Without prayer, we have no way to communicate with God. It is through prayer that we can gain spiritual strength for the real battle which, as Paul states, “is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12 NIV).

If we ever neglect to put on the full armor of God; truth, righteousness, the gospel, faith, salvation, the Word of God, and prayer, we’re going to have a tough day. If you ever find yourself getting beaten up in the day, as we all sometimes do, you might want to take a moment and make sure you’re wearing your armor. If you’re missing a piece, don’t worry, you can put it on at any time.

Do you know God? God knows you and He loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, right now, and He wants you to know Him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so we could be free of guilt, be freed from death, and live eternally with Him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation today:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment, and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.