I. WHEREFORE TAKE UNTO YOU THE WHOLE ARMOR OF GOD.
A. Wherefore is the wherefore, therefore? Why do we need the whole armor of God?
1. Because we are in a life and death conflict with an enemy who is bent on our destruction.
2. He does not abide by any rules of battle. He holds to the saying "All is fair in love and war."
3. He will use any devise or scheme to destroy you.
4. As a representative of Jesus Christ, you are one of his primary targets.
5. This is not a physical conflict, but spiritual.
a. He seeks to draw me into the physical arena, for there he has a decided advantage.
b. As soon as he can get me in the flesh, he can work me over good.
6. I cannot fight this battle with physical weapons.
a. It is not a matter of self control.
b. I may count to ten before I react, but that does not guarantee a right reaction.
c. I may try to mesmerize myself to change my automatic responses, but that will break down.
d. The little red "I think I can" engine will not be able to pull me over the hill.
e. I would like to think that a positive attitude and strong self resolve will win the battle for me, but such is not to be.
7. I need help from the outside, the help of the Holy Spirit.
a. Paul acknowledged, "In me, that is in my flesh, there dwells no good thing."
B. The battle is a spiritual battle, and it is the realm of the spirit that the battle is won or lost.
1. It is of utmost importance that we utilize the spiritual weapons at our disposal to fight this battle.
2. Paul wrote to the Corinthians:
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:
(For the weapons of our warfare [are] not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
3. Jesus the Captain of our salvation, has already engaged the foe and defeated him.
4. Paul speaks of His victory over the spiritual forces of darkness in his letter to the Colossians
[And] having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
C. Paul speaks of the whole armor of God.
1. As we look at this armor of God, we notice that there is nothing there to protect our back side.
a. This means that God does not intend for you to turn and try to run from the enemy.
b. The minute you try to run from the battle you are defenseless.
II. PAUL'S BATTLE COMMAND TO THE EPHESIANS. "THAT YOU MIGHT BE ABLE TO WITHSTAND IN THE EVIL DAY." THE WORD TRANSLATED WITHSTAND MIGHT BETTER BE TRANSLATED "STAND YOUR GROUND."
A. There is a tremendous pressure in our world today to try to get us as Christians to back off.
1. We must back off from saying that homosexuality is a sin, and those who practice it are going to hell.
a. Adultery is a sin, and those who practice it are going to hell.
b. Murder is sin and those who murder are going to hell.
c. Rape is a sin, and those who rape are going to hell.
d. We must back off from preaching against sin, for that offends people.
e. That unbelief is a sin, and those who do not believe in Jesus Christ as Lord are going to hell.
d. In a prominent pulpit in Southern California, where they seek to have a seeker friendly church, the minister recently declared that the congregation would never hear the word sin mentioned from that pulpit.
f. The word sin is an offensive word to the world.
2. We must back off from saying that Jesus is the only way to eternal life.
a. We must say that all roads lead to God.
b. We are insulting people of other beliefs when we say that there is one God and One mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus.
c. We must not say that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life, and no man can come to the Father but by Him.
d. This is too narrow and bigoted and might foster hate crimes against people of other beliefs.
3. I am not motivated by hate when I preach the gospel, that is the spin the White House spin masters are trying to declare.
a. It is the love of Christ that constrains me, for we judge that if one died for all, then all are dead and damned who do not know Jesus Christ.
b. We preach to them that they might not perish, but have everlasting life.
c. It is interesting that all of the attacks are coming against the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
d. I have not heard the White House press secretary denounce the tremendous conscription campaign's being carried on by the Moslem's. The Moslem's seem to me to be promoting hate, and they are the ones that are promoting terrorist attacks, and calling for the destruction of America.
e. One of the congressmen has not written to his colleagues suggesting that something be done to stop the attempt of the New Age movement to convert the world to their worship of mother earth, which is nothing more than Hinduism. But he is worried that Christians are seeking to convert Hindu's to Christianity and we may have to consider some kind of legislation to curb this kind of activity.
f. In the face of all of the pressure that is being put on the church today, we must not back down.
B. "And having done all to stand."
1. We must stand up to the world, the flesh and the devil.
2. To be able to do this we will need the whole armor of God.
3. As I look at the whole armor, I am confident that all that I might ever need to gain the victory has been provided for me.