“THE SHIELD OF FAITH”
“Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:” (Ephesians 6:14-17)
Note: ‘quench’ means to cool; put out a fire with water; extinguish a flame.
Christians’ experiences are that their shield of faith becomes a shield of failure … not able to quench, cool or extinguish the fiery darts.
Have Christians failed to notice the ‘ABOVE ALL’ when putting on the shield faith?
Faith is like a car’s petrol tank needing to be constantly re-filled.
Paul says “… faith COMETH by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17) … and that means the more we hear, read, study, dwell and meditate on the words of God, the Christian’s faith petrol tank turns from a shield of failure into a shield of faith.
Why not just say ‘comes’ like the versions of the NKJV, Good News, NIV and NASB etc?
The difference is ‘cometh’ is continuous, all the time with no breaks or gaps … while ‘comes’ is only continual, not all the time … with gaps and pauses … it comes and goes.
causes these breaks in
faith for a Christian?
Put it this way … suppose a man makes a top-flight football team and says “Well that’s it! I’ve made it! I don’t need to train anymore! My diet can now be pies, cakes, lollies and so on! I can go out late at night and party!” Yeh! Right! … NO!
And so it is for the Christian … late nights, over eating, bad diet … and worldly entertainment will rob the Christian and weaken his shield of faith.
For hundreds of years Christians stood firm in their oppositions to all forms of worldly entertainment … recognizing them for what they were … village fairs, wandering minstrels, dancing, stage plays and so on … a retreat and a hiding place from their accountability toward God … something to numb their conscience and mind. They knew of the destructive effect of these activities on their shield of faith.
the saints of old were strenuous in their
“This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, … for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.” (Joshua 1:8)
But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. (Psalm 1:2)
“I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.” (Psalm 119:15-16)
My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes. Psalm 119:48
“Meditate upon these things; give thyself WHOLLY to them;” (1 Timothy 4:15)
Doctors say “Problems of the body are caused by two things … toxicity and deficiency” … that is … you need more of this and less of that.
For the Christian this is less of the worldly entertainment and more of the word.
Dear Reader, are you continuously delighted of the things of God? Is it a joy to be meditating day and night on the words of God as the saints of old? Is it a bridge too far?
Christians find it difficult … almost impossible … having watched endless hours of TV over the years to re-capture their escaped mind with imaginations that exalt themselves higher than the knowledge of God … with images that can stay in the mind for hours, days, weeks, months and years!
the common language it’s called breaking bad
habits … sins for Christians.
the saints of old were told … “ … ye
shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before
you, and destroy
all their pictures, and destroy all their molten images,
and quite pluck
down all their high places:
Paul sums it up beautifully as follows … “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; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.” (2 Corinthians 10:5-6).
Note: A cast sheep does not get up again … and neither should imaginations.
Do Christians want to be castaways?
Of course not! Paul says he cast under … what? … his body lest he be a castaway (1 Corinthians 9:27) … he put aside all forms of seemingly harmless worldly entertainment that excited his flesh and numbed his mind. He’s been to heaven and wanted to return … he knew the glories that awaited him (2 Corinthians 12:2-3).
Dear Reader, self-examination is the duty of all Christians (1 Corinthians 11:28) such that shields of faith are continuously maintained and do not become shields of failure (Romans 12:2).
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS