Scriptures: Ephesians 6:11-18
To live in this world you need all the protection and help you can get. You must stand with those who share your faith and your beliefs. You have a place to fill on the battle line: others stand by your side, but you face the enemy. We must remember that spiritual growth happens during life's battle: in these times you need to put on the full armor of God.
Each of us fights different types of battles against a common enemy. A spiritual battle is a battle of the heart and soul: it is mental not physical. The battle has unexpected elements and unexpected sources.
God has given us defense items: the armor:
The belt of truth- this holds your garment together. Truth exposes lies and deception, and fights the unexpected elements.
The breastplate of righteousness- this protects the heart: one of our weakest points, but most valuable. When our heart is not right, we are vulnerable. The breastplate also protects your back from things that sneak up on you- the unexpected sources.
Your feet shod with readiness- firm footing is vital. Some things and places are not worth dwelling on or defending. We must be ready for the next attack of the enemy.
The shield of faith- faith is a critical piece of your armor: it deflects the fiery darts. Jesus told many: "Your faith has made you whole."
The helmet of salvation- spiritual battles take place in our minds, while thoughts of salvation guard our minds and thought process.
The sword of the spirit- use the Word of God to defend yourself. It must be sharp and ready for battle.
The enemy wants you to rely on things which are not tested. Too many Christians think they can depend on spiritual strangers or spiritual acquaintances when the battle comes. The Bible tells us to know them that labor among us. Ask yourself: how far will a spiritual stranger go for you? Have you seen them in the battle? God has placed you in a church that will battle with you against the darkness of this world. The church is your place of defense.