Title: Armed for Battle, Part One
Theme: Successfully Dressed in this Earthly Realm
Topic: Kingdom Authority
Series: Grasping Our Authority in Christ
In grasping our authority in Christ there are six key topics that must be addressed, the first being “Grasping Kingdom Authority.”
On this topic we have had our “Enemies Exposed,” come to realize that “A Battle Rages,” discovered “Surviving Satan’s Realm,” come to understand all that was “Conquered at the Cross,” and over the next couple of messages we are getting “Armed for Battle.”
People who are not surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus Christ have chosen to put their trust in other things to solve the trials of life.
These things include: asking a friend’s advice, education, money, worldly wisdom, and self-improvement seminars.
I would propose to you that none of these is wrong in themselves.
However, they will not bring the satisfaction our souls desire unless they are applied within the whole counsel of God’s Word and blanketed in prayer.
Just how do Christian soldiers prepare for the battles that must be fought in this sin trodden world?
What is their armor and how does it make the difference in their walk with the Lord?
“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.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.
With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.”
The exhortation from the written Word of God is
The exhortation from the written Word of God is, “…put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground.
The Word is clear.
Christians have an adversary who is fully able to incite men of God to sin.
(1 Chronicles 21:1) The Apostle Peter, remembering the time Satan “sifted” him (Luke 22:31) warns of this roaring lion and exhorts the Body of Christ to be self controlled and alert.
(1 Peter 5:8) This why the Apostle Paul was led of the Holy Spirit of Christ to write down the full armor of God, thus informing the Body of Christ of all that is available to equip them in their struggles against evil spiritual forces.
Christians who grasp their authority in Christ know the believer’s life is a battlefield.
Immediately upon receiving Christ into their spiritual heart and life, there is that constant struggle, an unceasing fight, an unending war while living on this earth.
From the cradle to the grave there is a constant struggle for the spiritual hearts of mankind.
Satan engulfs us in this war, using the weakness of the flesh and the lures of the world.
There are two ways of learning while watching the actions of mankind.
One is to learn from the success gained from doing what is right and the other is observing what happens when mankind does what is wrong.
Christians who observe the lives of those who have chosen to live for self live in reverent fear of:
*Not enjoying the abundant life promised in Christ.
*Not enjoying the Lord’s enablement for overcoming sin.
*Not enjoying the certainty of their future in God’s will.
*Not enjoying the acceptance of God through Christ.
Christians who enjoy their authority in Christ understand the truths of needing to put on the full armor of God so they can stand their ground in those on-going battles for the souls of mankind and to maintain their intimate walk with the Lord.
Putting on Christ Jesus as personal Savior and Lord
Mature Christians know that we have enemies to fight against, a captain to fight for, a banner to fight under and certain rules of war by which we are to govern ourselves.
Being fully armed for our battle begins with putting on Christ Jesus as personal Savior and Lord.
Romans 13:14 has a truth that must be grasped, “…clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.”
The key truth to being fully armed for battle is to personalize the putting on of the full armor of God by having Jesus Christ as personal Savior and Lord.
It can not be expressed loudly enough or often enough that God does not have grandchildren, He only has children.
Christians who enjoy “Kingdom Authority” are those who have Holy Spirit illumination of Colossians 1:27 “To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
Christians who walk victoriously with the Lord on this sin trodden earth are those who have whole heartedly chosen to let their life’s epistle say, “When my life comes under the critical eyes of the lost and church attendees, may it proclaim Christ living in me” (The Expositors Bible Commentary; Commentary, Critical and Explanatory)
Victorious Christians literally put on Christ by looking at only what He would look at, listening to only what He would listen to, talking about only what He would talk about, touching in their spiritual heart only what He would touch, taking every thought captive to Christ, eating and drinking only what He would eat and drink.
(Matthew Henry Commentary; The Preacher’s Outline & Sermon Bible; Bible Knowledge Commentary)
Christians who make it a daily routine to decide in their heart, mind and life to let the Holy Spirit of Christ do a work in and through them spiritually enjoy the Lord touching them, protecting them, and enabling them.
These Christians literally walk in the Lord’s presence at all times.
(Thru the Bible) True Christian discipleship teaches us to walk so as to please the Lord.
This lifestyle leads others to consider their life and walk with Christ.
Christians armed for battle begin with confessing as the Apostle Paul did, “What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things.
I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ--the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.
I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection…” (Philippians 3:8-10) Christians who have this heart have high recommendation before God and are recognized in His kingdom as having worth.
Alfred P. Gibbs wrote about a young man who went to London with a letter of introduction to Baron Rothschild with a request that the great banker would give the young man employment.
Upon receiving the letter Mr. Rothschild welcomed the young man warmly, but had to express with regret that he had no job available.
Mr. Rothschild put on his hat and walked with the young man showing him all the points of interest and places of possible employment.
As they passed by a bank Rothschild took the young man in with him as he made some transactions.
A few days later the young man returned to that bank, applying for a job.
After applying the young man was asked, “Are you the young man who was with Mr. Rothschild?”
The young man answered “Yes.”
His answer brought forth this statement, “Well, you are in good company young man, we will consider this to be a sufficient recommendation.”
(From Knights Master Book of 4,000 Illustration)
Let the Holy Spirit place this truth into your spiritual heart when you are walking through this life with Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord.
You are in company that gives you high recommendation with God and you are employed into service to the King of kings.
Make it a point to live a life like that of Peter and John of whom the Sanhedrin took note as being “men [whom] had been with Jesus.”
For a heart check, does your life express a relationship with Christ?
Do you make it point to clothe yourself with the likeness of Christ in trials, temptations and in work of the Lord?
Stand against the devil’s schemes
Christians who enjoy “Kingdom Authority” clothe themselves in Christ and respond to their Biblical exhortation, “Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.
(Ephesians 6:11) The Holy Spirit of Christ moved the Apostle Paul to write about not only Christ Jesus, but also about the resources God has for the soldier of Christ.
The Word of God has nine instructions found in Ephesians chapter six that will enable us to defeat our enemy, the Devil.
Allowing the Holy Spirit of Christ to enable us to apply our armor skillfully will enable us to walk in victory, thus enjoying “Kingdom Authority.”
Victorious living involves being obedient to our exhortation, “stand firm then.”
“Stand” (histemi) is an active verb meaning to achieve, accomplish, complete.
Practical application is be prepared, do thoroughly, work it out.
It is the ability to stand when the fight is on, when the conflict is at hand.
The vision is not dislodged nor fallen.
This relationship in Christ enables one to stand at his post, literally praying through to completion that which the Lord’s sets before him.
There is steadfastness in the life of those who put on the full armor of God.
(The Complete Word Study; Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament; Word Meanings in the New Testament, truth presented by Meyer and Salmond: Vines Amplified Expository Dictionary of the Bible)
The order of this day is to “Stand, Stand, Stand.”
Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones points out that this military term is use frequently in the New Testament.
Christians are to see themselves as soldiers being trained and equipped in the army of the living God.
Christians who understand “Kingdom Authority” do not become bitter because there is conflict for the souls of mankind nor in maintaining a healthy vibrant relationship with the Lord.
Trusting in the Lord enables Christians to pray through those times of discouragement.
When weakness comes upon them, they overcome that lethargic mode of living and slackness.
They recognize when they begin to feel sorry for themselves, when they begin to question “Why me?”
They see these as signs of defeat and respond appropriately when rebuked by Biblical authority.
They enjoy those whom God has brought into their lives to call them to faith in Christ.
Biblical authority includes the Word of God, Christ Himself sending the Holy Spirit, Christian husbands and wives, parents, Biblical elders, deacons and Sunday School teachers.
Mature Christians know that it is important to recognize the inevitability of trials and troubles and conflicts in this world, thus they heed to this exhortation, “stand firm then.”
Putting on the belt of truth
Being well armed for battle involves putting on the belt of truth.