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  • Writer's pictureEast Martin CRC

Putting the Shield to Use

Ephesians 4:25-32

Verse 18  They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts.

 

    We mentioned yesterday about how the shield of faith needs to be used as both a defensive and offensive tool.  We use it to push back against the enemy forces and to defend ourselves from the schemes of the enemy.  There are many things the enemy sends our way to try to stop us in our battle.  Sometimes the trials in life may seem like that, but really his preferred way is to tempt us with things we know we shouldn’t have or do and to cause us to doubt God’s goodness and faithfulness.

 

    So how does our faith in God work to help us fight off temptation?  Well, as we mentioned the other day, it is important for us to keep our focus on the Lord.  When our faith is fixed solidly on the Lord, we will more easily recognize the tactics of the enemy.  When things like temptations come our way we can know how to address them because our faith in Jesus has given us a reminder of what it cost Him for us to give into the temptations.  Our faith in the Lord should be causing us to gain sensitivity to the Lord, disabling the enemy and his schemes to bring us away from the way and work of our Master.

 

    With that thought in mind, Paul tells his friends in Ephesus it is important they use their faith in the Lord to help fight against sins like lying or misleading others.  The army of God needs to remember how faith in the Lord should have us marching more like Him and that means not side-stepping the truth.  If we don’t give truth the value the Lord puts on it, we will find we are not going to be strong enough to properly hold the shield in place.

 

    Then there is the big sin the enemy is looking for, anger.  Of course anger in and of itself is not wrong but we need to keep it in check and that is easier said than done.  When we are angry with someone and don’t try to fix the issue right away, it can fester and that will lead to sin.  Not dealing with anger leads to separating from those we should simply forgive and can cause us to talk about them in unfavorable tones to others.  Not dealing with issues gives the enemy a crack in our armor to aim for.

 

    We also need to be willing to work so we won’t be tempted to steal.  We need to be useful both in life and in the battle.  If we aren’t busy with the work the Lord gives, the enemy will be happy to use our time for lesser things and we definitely need to fight against that!

 

Making It Personal

    What temptations does the enemy know you are most vulnerable to?  Why are those particularly dangerous for you?  How can your faith in Jesus help you fight against the work of the enemy?

 

Making It Personal Kids

    Do you struggle with getting so angry you sin?  Do you find it easy to lie?  How can knowing Jesus is always there with you, help you fight those urges?

 

Closing Prayer

    Father, thank You for these reminders of some of the ways the enemy likes to wage war with us.  Give us the strength and wisdom to fight the battle in a way to bring You glory.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

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