SHOES… THE GOSPEL OF PEACE …… EPHESIANS 6:14 ….. JUNE 16, 2019 THE HELMET OF SALVATION…… EPHESIANS 6: 17 ….. JULY 7, 2019

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THE SHIELD OF FAITH…… EPHESIANS 6: 16 ..… JUNE 30, 2019

     In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one.  Ephesians 6:16 ESV

     The Christian, when living and loving Jesus will face many battles as the evil one will rise up against you.  Never treat a situation as a small battle, but be alert having the shield of faith, and be ready for even one flaming dart.  Knowing that we are referring to spiritual battles, how would you describe a flaming dart?  Here are some descriptive words: fear, lies, doubt, anxiety, uncertainty, and on this list might go, but you get the idea.  The effect of these arrows/darts of thoughts and situations can be crippling in anyone’s life, but the Christian has available to them a shield to use in every battle.  It doesn’t mean you won’t battle with these thoughts, but faith causes you to look to God.  When looking to God in faith, you are believing what God says and promises over the doubt, lies, or perhaps horrible situations the devil shoots at you.  For example, the devil will tell you that you are worthless, but in reality you are of great value. Why?  Because you were made by God.  For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mothers womb.  Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. Psalm 139: 13-14 ESV  The devil will tell you that you could never be forgiven, but the Bible teaches, If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleans us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9 ESV  You may experience a horrible situation in which there seems to be no end, and Satan wants you to feel and believe you are defeated, and that God really doesn’t care. This is a lie. Faith believes the teaching of Romans 8: 18-37.  Faith is an essential part of being a Christian and faith is believing God no matter what life deals you.  It is believing that He will never leave nor forsake you. (Hebrews 13:5)  Faith is not something we can’t necessarily see, but a walk we walk because …  We walk by faith, not by sight. 2 Corinthians 5:7 ESV   This faith does not need to be measured as big or small, for just a little faith can do great things when you believe.  This is so because faith is not in ourselves but in the God that can move mountains.  Jesus said,“For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like the grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain,  Move from here to there, and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.”  Matthew 17:20 ESV   The shield of faith is believing God who is bigger than any lie or situation that Satan can attack you with.       

IN ALL CIRCUSTANCES:
     Never treat an attack from Satan or his demons as small.  Don’t take confidence in yourself…EVER!  In all circumstances we must look to Jesus, the founder and protector of our faith.  Hebrews 12:2 ESV  The NewAmerican Standard Bible says it this way. Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith.  Peter, when looking at Jesus, walked on water, but when he started looking at the raging storm around him, He began to sink. (Matthew 14: 28-31)   In life you will have storms, never underestimate the severity of the storm, but most importantly …DON’T TAKE YOUR EYES OFF JESUS.

TAKE UP THE SHIELD OF FAITH:   
            Faith is essential in the Christian walk.  Now without faith it is impossible to please God, since the one who draws near to him must believe that he exists and rewards those that seek him. Hebrews 11:6  CSB  Hebrews chapter 11 is the so called Hall of Fame of those who believed in faith.  Faith in God alone is what pleases God.   The shield we have is the confidence we have in God by believing and focusing upon him and not entertaining the world’s way of thinking.  It is believing, even though  by worldly standards it may not make sense.  It is trusting in only God and His word ….. the Bible.     

EXTINGUISHING ALL THE FLAMING DARTS OF THE EVIL ONE:
     What extinguishes fire?  Water.  The flaming darts of Satan will be extinguished by Jesus, who gives and is the living water.  Satan’s desire is to burn you and cause you much pain.  Jesus wants to refresh you and quench the thirst caused by the doubts and lies of Satan.  Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of FAITH, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.  Hebrews 10:22 ESV  When Satan reminds you of past sin and failures attempting to cause you to doubt, remember he is the father of lies. Remind the devil you are washed in he blood of the lamb and have been redeemed by the blood of the lamb.   

APPLICATION:
     It is not a question that the flaming dart will come but when.  Obviously we are to dress in the armor of God for battle and take up the shield of his protection in our lives.  The application of faith is this …. look to Jesus.   Whenever you face all that the forces of evil shoots at you …. look to Jesus.  When storms of life happen…. look to Jesus.  When overwhelmed ….. look to Jesus.  When weary …. look to Jesus.   Focus, focus, focus on Jesus. (Hebrews12:2)  Focus with songs, prayers, and scripture memorization.  Meditate and think often upon him and give no place for the father of lies in your thoughts.  I will meditate on you precepts and fix my eyes on your ways. Psalm 119:15 ESV …..    Give no opportunity to the devil.  Ephesians 4:27 ESV…..   For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh.   For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds.  We destroy arguments and every lofty option raised against the knowledge of God,  AND TAKE EVERY THOUGHT CAPTIVE TO OBEY CHRIST.  2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ESV 
               Live strong in the Lord and live for God on purpose. 

 Because of His Grace ~ Pastor David 

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