10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation… Ephesians 6:10-17a
The Apostle Paul talks about the weapons we have access to in order to defend ourselves from the enemy of our soul. The armor of God provides everything we need to be victorious over the arrows the enemy shoots at us. Having the armor and knowing how to use them are two different things. Paul instructs us to “put on” the whole armor of God daily to prevail against the enemy. Today we are going to look at the 5th piece in the armor of God which is the helmet of salvation.
The helmet of salvation is another defensive part of the armor. The helmet protects the head where it is easy for an enemy to deliver a fatal blow. It is through salvation that our minds are covered (past, present, and future). The concept of salvation is used as a present state of being. It is an up-to-date relationship with the Father through Jesus Christ. Our minds are covered not by what we know but by whose we are. We need to also give the Spirit of God some material to work with. Not that He needs any help, we need the help. That is why it is good to saturate in the word of God and put it to memory (refer back to the belt of truth).
In Matthew 10:28 it says, “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” We need to remember that it says, “in hell.” That scripture is talking about the second death found in Revelation 21:8, “But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars – they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” The second birth experience that Jesus talks about in John 3 declares through Scripture that we will not experience the second death mentioned in Revelation. Again, it is important to know that God plans to keep us from the fires of Hell by saving us from our sin and not in our sin. We have a new mind leading us to seek after God, acting as a helmet in the midst of this battle on earth. Praise God!
In putting the explanation of each piece of the armor, I am struck with the fact that everything leads back to the very word of God. We have the playbook at our fingertips. Take it with you and use it as a reference to all of life’s situations and dilemmas.
Sunday is the beginning of Holy Week as it starts with Palm Sunday. Our children will parade through the aisles with palm branches, the choir will be leading us in worship, and we will look at the Power from the Grave. It’s going to be a great day! Invite someone to come with you as we celebrate Jesus and His sacrifice for our sin. We are praying for God’s power to be perfect in us.
Joy in Jesus!
Rev. Mike McClurg
Senior Pastor, Findlay First Church of the Nazarene