SPIRIT-FILLED WARFARE PART 2c
THE BUCKLER OF FAITH
Intro: We are
continuing to examine the various pieces that constitute the whole armor of God. I am taking my time and preaching on each piece
of the armor because there is coming a day in each of our lives when we will
need to know what the whole armor of God
is, and we will need to know how to use it in our lives. The truth is, we need
to know about and use the armor every day. We dont always think about it, but
it is vitally important in our spiritual lives.
According to Verses 10-13 the saints of God are engaged in a great cosmic
battle against a powerful, relentless enemy. Our enemy is the devil, v 11. He attacks us by using his wiles, v. 11. He employs tricks, schemes, and methods to undermine our faith, and to attack the glory of God.
God desires that we be able to stand against the attacks of the enemy, vvs. 11, 13, 14. To
stand means to hold a critical position during a time of enemy attack. Biblical standing is the image of a soldier refusing to
yield even one inch of ground to an attacking foe. It is the image of a soldier on the defensive,
protecting the ground that has already been taken from the enemy.
God has blessed His people by giving us some very
We have truth.
We have His church.
We have His Word.
We have His grace.
We have His salvation.
We have His blessing.
We have so much more too.
The problem is, our enemy, the devil, does not want
us to have the things we have been given by the Lord. He will do everything in
His power to strip all those things away from us. What he cant take away from
us, he will so everything in his power to nullify. If he cant take it, he
wants to strip it of its power in our lives.
If we would keep what we have in the Lord, we are
going to have to stand and hold the
precious ground we have been given.
If we are going to stand,
we must put
on the whole armor of God. We have
already examined The Belt Of Truth, The Breastplate Of
Righteousness, and The Boots Of Peace.
The Belt Of Truth speaks of a life that is built upon faithfulness
to the Word of God and to the God of the Word. It speaks of our being truth in
both our testimony and in our living. This belt of truth gives the believer stability so that they are
enabled to stand. The belt of truth also
provides a place for the other pieces of the armor to rest. Without the belt of truth the soldier of God will find the other pieces of
the armor useless. Unless our lives and testimonies are rooted in, and lived
out in truth, we will not be able to stand in the evil day.
The Breastplate Of
Righteousness speaks of a holy life.
It speaks of a life that is lived in conformity to the Word of God. A holy life
is a powerful defense against the attacks of the enemy. When we allow sin to
dwell in our lives, we give Satan a beachhead from which
he can attack us and exploit us, Eph. 4:27. Sin give Satan the ammunition he needs to assail
the glory of God, and to destroy and devastate our testimonies and reputations.
Personal holiness closes the door to Satan, and it protects us from him when he
The Boots Of Peace speak about our foundation in Jesus. When our feet are shod with the
preparation of the Gospel of peace,
it means that we saved by grace and we know it. Nothing can change our minds.
Satan may try and cause us to doubt, but when we wear The Boots Of Peace, we are sure and secure in our salvation, and we
cannot be moved. This, we become a hard target for the enemy and his attacks.
Boots Of Peace give us such confidence
in what the Lord has done for us that we want others to know about it too. So,
we share the good news of the Gospel with those who do not know the Lord in the
hopes they will come to know Him too!
The next piece of armor we want to study is The Buckler Of Faith. The Bible says, Above all, taking the shield of faith,
wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. Lets see why this piece of the armor is so
important that the Lord would say that we are to have it above all.
16 THE BUCKLER OF
I. HOW THE SHIELD OF FAITH IS DESIGNED
Shields were very
important to the Roman soldier. There were several kinds of shields in use by
the Romans during that time period. Two of those kinds were the most commonly
One was a small, round shield that was secured to
the soldiers arm by two leather straps. This shield was used to parry the
trusts of an enemy blade in hand-to-hand combat. This small, lightweight shield
is not the one referred to here.
The word used here is, thureos. It comes from the word thura, which means door. Thus, the thureos was a large, door shaped shield.
These shields were about four and a half feet high
and two and a half feet wide. This shield was designed to cover the entire body
of the soldier. This was possible because men in the First Century were much
smaller than men are today.
The shield was usually made of a solid piece of
wood, covered wither with metal or heavy oiled leather. A man could put his entire
body behind it as it absorbed the javelins and arrows of the enemy. In the case
of flaming arrows, very often the arrow would snuff out as it buried itself in
the thickness of the shield. During battles these great shields would often
bristle with smoking arrows like porcupines.
The shield was curved along its length to provide
some protection to the soldiers sides.
The shields were protected by a leather cover until
they were needed for battle.
The shield was one of the most important pieces of
armor possessed by the Roman soldier.
When Roman soldiers went into battle, those
carrying the larger shields marched in the vanguard of the army. They marched
side by side with their shields together. The Romans called this a phalanx.
Often, when the Romans faced their enemies, the
ranks of soldiers which followed the first rank would raise their shields over
their heads. They would butt their shields against those of the first rank.
With the shields of the first rank soldiers held side by side and with the
following rows holding their shields over their heads, the Romans presented
their enemies with an impenetrable barrier.
Arrows, swords, and spears were useless against the
Roman phalanx. Any missiles thrown by the enemy would fall harmlessly to the ground.
At times, the Romans phalanx was as much as a mile wide.
I. How The Shield Of Faith Is
HOW THE SHIELD OF FAITH DESCRIBED
We are told here that believers need a shield. The
shield we need is not to be one of iron or leather. It is not to be a manmade
shield. The shield we are told to have is called a shield of faith.
The faith Paul refers to
here is not the body of Christian belief.
He is not referring to the doctrines we believe. He is referring to simple faith in God. This faith
refers to the belief in Jesus Christ that brings salvation. It also speaks of
our daily faith in Jesus that leads to blessing, daily provision, and strength
for the journey. This kind of faith is simple faith
in Jesus. Simple trust in the Lord that saves us, grounds us, strengthens us,
calms us, grows us, establishes us, etc.
Faith is a necessary, non-negotiable component of
the Christian life.
We cant be saved apart from faith in God. For by grace are ye
saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of
works, lest any man should boast, Eph. 2:8–9.
Our entire Christian life is built upon, and
sustained by, a consistent believing that God is, and that He blesses those who
place their faith in Him. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that
cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that
diligently seek him, Heb. 11:6.
We all live by some form of faith every day we
live. We cross bridges and we believe they will support us. We go through
tunnels believing they will not collapse. We trust electricity, automobiles,
airplanes, ships, and buses, believing they are safe. Our faith in those things is well founded for they have
proven themselves over and over.
Faith in Jesus is far and above the everyday faith
we practice when we climb into our car and head down the road, or when we drive
over a bridge. Our faith is only as good as the object of that faith. When our
faith is in Jesus Christ, and God the Father, our faith is in Someone Who
cannot fail. Thus, the faith of the Christian has power, because the object of
our faith is all-powerful. True Christian faith never fails because the object
of our faith never fails!
We need to be sure that our faith is in the Lord.
The Gospel will save the souls of all who trust its message. The Lord will be a
Father to all who reach out to Him in faith. The Word of God will never fail.
The faith of the believer in God is never misplaced, but our faith in Him is
essential if we want to succeed in our walk with Him, and if we want to see our
enemy defeated in his efforts to attack and destroy us.
The shield of faith is
necessary because it provides us with our connection to the Lord. It is also
necessary because it protects us from the enemy who desires to slay us.
I. How The Shield Of Faith Is
Shield Of Faith Is Described
III. HOW THE SHIELD OF FAITH IS DEPLOYED
The Bible says that the shield of faith will enable us to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. In ancient times, the tips of arrows would be
wrapped in pieces of cloth that had been soaked in pitch. This would then be
set on fire and shot at the enemy. When the arrow hit its target, the flaming
pitch would splatter in every direction, igniting everything flammable it
touched. Arrows could cause damage by piercing bodies. The pitch could cause
serious burns in their skin, and it could burn their equipment and gear.
The Roman thureus shield would
provide and adequate defense against these fiery missiles. If the shield was
metal, the arrow and its fiery tip would be deflected. If the shield was
leather, it would be soaked in water prior to the battle, and the wet leather
would quench the fiery arrows and protect the soldier behind the shield.
Every day the saints of God are assailed by the fiery darts of the devil. The arrows he launches against us
are usually the arrows of temptation. The enemy assaults us with temptations to
immorality, hatred, envy, anger, covetousness, envy, fear, despair, distrust,
doubt, pride, and every other conceivable sin. Satan comes against us,
continually attacking us, and tempting us to sin. The fiery darts of temptation have the potential to inflict great
damage on our lives, but the shield of faith has
the power to quench all the devils fiery darts!
We all have lusts within us which are easy to
ignite. All that is needed is the tiniest flame and we are a roaring fire. So
we are assaulted with hot shafts of sensuality, foul, diseased arrows of degrading
passions, smoking arrows of materialism.
And we burn so easily! As the arrows fly toward us,
our rationalizations come so naturally: If God didn't want me to have this, then why did he make me with
such a desire for this thing, this person, this pleasure? My neighbor has it.
He does it. And he is doing so well
Were really good at justifying sin, arent we? We
marry a lost person, and try to justify it by talking about how much we love
the other person. We gossip, and we justify it by talking about how concerned
we are about the person. We do ten thousand other things and try to justify
them in countless ways. In the end, it all comes down to the same thing. When
we sin, and try to justify that sin, we are guilty of doing Satans will over
the Lords will. That is never anything but sin!
But then comes God's Word:
Thou shalt not covet thy neighbours house, thou shalt not covet
thy neighbours wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor
his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbours, Ex. 20:17.
For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye
should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to
possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of
concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: That no man go beyond
and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of
all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called
us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth
not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit, 1 Thes. 4:3–8.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things
are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever
things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any
virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things, Phil. 4:8.
As we believe God's Word, the shield flies up and
the arrows fall to ashes. It is as C.S. Lewis said: We must pray for the gift
of Faith, for the power to go on believing not in the teeth of reason but in
the teeth of lust.
Satan desires to defeat us, that is very clear. His
primary means of accomplishing that getting us to sin. When we sin, we do so
because we have come to believe that sin can provide something for us that God
cannot provide. Sin is always rooted in doubt of the goodness of Gods
character. When we sin, we doubt God. When we doubt God, we disbelieve God, 1 John 5:10, which
in effect, says God is a liar and cant be trusted to do what He said He would
So, Satan causes us to doubt God by leading us to
sin against God, and by causing us to justify our sin against God. When we fall
into this trap, we are guilty of degrading Gods character and elevating the
devils. No good can come from that.
In the Garden of Eden Satan launched his first fiery dart. He tempted Eve to doubt God and to distrust the
Word of the Lord. Since then, the devil has lit every arrow he fires at the
people of God from the same fire. He tempts us in the same manner in which he
tempted Eve then. He tempts us all according to the same pattern. That pattern
is found in Gen 3:1-6. It is also found in 1 John 2:15, which says, For all that is in the world, the lust of
the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the
Father, but is of the world.
Interestingly enough, the Lord Jesus, when He was
tempted by the devil in Matt. 4, was attacked with the very same fiery darts. Jesus deflected the way Eve should have. The Lord
Jesus deflected the devils darts the way we should deflect them. Jesus
deflected them with the Word of God.
If we would stand for the Lord against the attacks
wicked, which refers to the devil,
then we must stand against him holding up the shield of faith. We must lift the Word of God together and stand
side-by-side creating an impenetrable wall that Satan cannot defeat with his
The Word of God, the truth of God, is what we must
have if we would see the fiery darts of the
Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put
their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou
be found a liar, Pro. 30:5–6.
As for God, his way is
perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust
in him, Psa. 18:30.
For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is
the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith, 1 John 5:4.
Conc: So, what is the shield of faith? The shield of faith is
simple trust in God. It is taking Him at His Word, and believing Him in all
things. It is putting Him and His will ahead of everything else in life. So
that when Satan launches his fiery darts at us, we
are able to hold up the shield of faith,
and what them all fall harmlessly to the ground.
When we trust God, we can stand against all the
attacks of the enemy. The shield of faith is
more than a piece of armor to be taken out for our protection when needed. The shield of faith is what makes the Christian life possible. The
Lord says, For
therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is
written, The just shall live by faith,
Rom. 1:17. This
kind of faith is the very lifeblood of the believer.
The shield of faith,
which is simple childlike faith and trust in the Lord, is a shield that the
arrows of Satan cannot penetrate. That shield will protect you here. And, like
the ancient Roman soldiers who were slain in battle, and carried off the field
on their shields, the shield of faith will carry you home to glory and bring
you into the presence of the Lord!
Do you stand protected by the shield of faith? Are you rooted and rounded in the truth and ready
for the attacks of the enemy? If there are needs in this area, lets come talk
to the Lord about them now.
I. The Belt Of Truth
Breastplate Of Righteousness
III. The Boots Of Peace