Stand and protect your thoughts

Eph 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;

Your brain is a marvelous creation.
It controls everything about your body from temperature and heart rhythm to processing odors and sounds.
In times of distress on the body, like hypothermia, the brain will tell the body to send more warming blood to the vital organs, including itself.
Your brain can feel a pinprick on your toe and alert you to pull away.
Cut off that toe and the brain will still function and control the rest of the body.
Remove an entire arm and the brain will continue to function and control the remainder of the body.
Cut off the head or damage the brain and the rest of the body will suffer.
This is why you must protect your brain and your thoughts with the helmet of salvation.
It says in Ps 119:41, Let Your mercies come also to me, O Lord — Your salvation according to Your word.
Salvation is by the word of God and the helmet of salvation is the word of God.
Protect your thoughts by reading the word of God and filter out the lies of the world that go against it.
Now on to the final part of the armor – the sword.
Hebrews tells you the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword.
Again, the sword is the word of God.
This is your only weapon and what do you do with it?
Hold it.
In this chapter of Ephesians, you are instructed to stand (Eph 6:11, 13, 14).
You are not to swing or sway.
You are to stand in the word of God.
The word of God does the fighting for you.
Stand on His word.
Stand in His word.

God’s word – Your faith

Eph 6:16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.

Let’s look at the wicked one’s weapon for just a moment – fiery darts.
It’s not enough that it’s a dart, which can pierce anywhere on your body, it’s also on fire to inflict more pain and damage.
The wicked one really does not like you but then he is a murderer from the beginning.
A dart is meant to damage the inside and the fire is meant to damage the outside.
You have coverage for your chest, feet, and head but that leaves some exposure to your arms and legs.
With the shield of faith, you can protect the unprotected.
And what is the shield of faith?
It is written that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Rom 10:17
Once again the shield is the word of God.
You know have the word of God covering your waist, heart, feet, and the unprotected.
I’ll finish up the armor of God next time.
Just this reminder to read God’s word every day and keep yourself encouraged and protected against the enemy of your soul.

Holy Footwear

Eph 6:15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

I use to watch a reality show called Naked and Afraid.
Not to worry, they blurred a lot of the body out.
It’s about survivalists dropped in jungles, deserts, savannahs, and forests around the world and they must survive for 21 days with nothing but, perhaps, a knife, a map, and a firestarter.
One of the first things the survivalists do is find a place to camp, find a water source, and then try to make something protective for their feet, especially in rocky or thorny areas.
They know even minor damage to their feet could keep them from traveling to the extraction point.
Your feet are the foundation of your body, able to withstand the entirety of your weight.
Shoes were important to the Roman soldier when Paul wrote today’s scripture.
The shoes worn by the Roman soldiers were nothing compared to today’s footwear but they did the job.
As a Christian, your foundation is the Gospel of peace.
Ps 85:8 says, “I will hear what God the Lord will speak, For He will speak peace To His people and to His saints.”
Again, the Gospel of peace is the word of God and the word of God protects the foundation of your body.
With your feet shod with the gospel, you are ready to travel anywhere and spread the Good News of Jesus Christ.
You can trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Luke 10:19
It’s good to know God’s word protects you as you put one foot in front of the other today.

Protect your Heart

Eph 6:14 …having put on the breastplate of righteousness,

Law enforcement has a dangerous occupation.
They never know who or what they will encounter in a day.
Dangerous criminals intent on escaping with little care for life will easily shoot at police officers.
Because of this, many LEOs wear kevlar or some similar protection over the chest and stomach area.
These products save lives by covering vital organs.
The breastplate of righteousness does the same thing – cover vital organs, especially your heart.
Isaiah 45:23 says, “The word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness.”
Again we find God’s word is this important part of the armor of God.
His word protects your heart against the lies of the enemy intent on swaying you away from God.
Reading His word covers your heart with what is true and right.

Bind The Truth

Eph 6:13-14 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. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth,

Getting dressed is a daily necessity unless you work from home and can stay in your jammies all day.
However, sooner or later you must get out of the house or change the jammies.
When you get dressed you probably have some favorite clothing you wear daily.
For me, it’s now overalls but at one time it was blue jeans and a t-shirt.
Depending on your job, there may be accessories.
Doctors and nurses can wear a stethoscope all day.
A policeman wears a gun, a taser, and pepper spray all day.
A construction worker may have several tools and a hardhat.
Paul says the Christian needs to daily dress in the armor of God, starting with girding truth around your waist, like a belt.
To gird means to encircle or bind.
What a beautiful illustration to complete wrap yourself up in truth.
And what is truth?
Ps 119:160 The entirety of Your word is truth.
So encircle or bind God’s word around you before you leave the house today.

Your Ministry

I believe everyone has something to do in ministry.

The Bible says,

He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, Eph 4:11

And

God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 1 Cor 12:28

Sometimes the ministry is not glamorous or giving much credit.

And Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.” Gen 22:5

Abraham and Isaac were going to worship and sacrifice to God. The young men with them were told to stay with the donkey.

On the surface it seems like Abraham is doing all the important ministry – the worshipping, the sacrifice, and the fellowship.

But the young men have just as important job. They had to watch the stuff. Perhaps Abraham set up camp and the young men are waiting on their return with a hot meal and drink.

When I was in elementary school I thought the coolest adult at school was the janitor. He got to handle all that neat trash, push garbage cans around, mop up messes, and he picked at us kids.

Now that I’m grown it’s just not as glamorous but I see how important it is.

Whatever God has you doing, whether it’s pastoring a church or handing out tracks on a sidewalk – be the best you can be at it. If it wasn’t important He wouldn’t have you doing it.

Abba, thank You for the ministry You have given me. I want to do my best in it. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN

Protect yourself!

Last time I wrote about false prophets and deceivers.

Those that propagate a false gospel are very popular. The preaching of erroneous gospel is very feel good – very pleasing to the ears.

There is no mention of a penalty of sin since there is no mention of sin.
No hell, just heaven.
Anything goes. You are told there are many ways to heaven but you must just be faith and diligent on the path you choose.

The congregation can be very large and the pastor is well off financially. He seems to exploit the wealth and poverty of his followers by promising things he can’t deliver.
His sermons may include secular and humanistic ideas. Even thoughts from non-Christian sources like Muslims, Hindu’s, and Buddhist.

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 2 Tim 4:3

The best defense against false prophets and deceivers is to know the truth. Reading God’s word reveals the reality of what God desires for you to know about sin and salvation.

This is the reason the Bible says,

Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Eph 6:11

And,

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. Eph 6:13

The armor of God is designed to protect your heart and mind against the falsities of Satan.

Abba, I receive Your word into my heart and soul to protect me from the lies I will hear today. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN

Here is your reward!

You walk into a business and see a notice taped to the window. There’s a picture of the cure little dog and the words “lost” and “reward”.

As you leave the store and drive home you are surprised to see a dog running loose that amazingly favors the one you saw on the window.

You stop and gently speak to the little dog. It wags his tail and slowly comes to you. You pick up the dog and place him in your lap. He licks you and happily settles down while you drive home.

You call the number you saw on the poster in the window. The owner meets you, thanks you over and over and wants to give you $50 for finding the dog.

You hesitate to take it but the owner insists! It is your reward.

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Abram was definitely a man of faith. But even people of faith can have those moments of doubt. God assurance to Abram –

Gen 15:1 “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”

God, Himself, is your reward.

He rewards with forgiveness. Eph 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.

He rewards with salvation. Rom 10:9-1o if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

He rewards with eternal life. 1 John 2:25 And this is the promise that He has promised us — eternal life.

Abba, I found You and I am rewarded. YES&AMEN

Proven, Pure, & Powerful Protection

Gen 15:1 After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”

God did not stop with fear; He also gave reassurance.

“I am your shield!”

A shield is used for protection and in this case it’s very appropriate since it may be an armed adversary is Abram’s concern.

You can take God at His word – it is proven protection. Ps 18:30-As for God, His way is perfect; The word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him.

His word is pure protection. Prov 30:5-Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him.

And His word is powerful protection. Eph 6:16-above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.

God is your protection also. I’m sure Abram isn’t going to run over to the other kings and taunt them with a “Na-na-na, you can’t get me!”
God’s protection comes with your responsibility to be where God wants you and doing what He has asked of you.

Abba Father, I feel Your shield of protection everyday as it guards my mind and heart. YES&AMEN