We are admonished in Ephesians 6 to put on the whole armor of God so that we will be able to be victorious over all the wiles of our enemy, the devil. It is interesting that when God chose to do battle with sinfulness He put on some of the same protective gear that we are to wear. In other words, God has shared a part of His own wardrobe with us to enable us to be protected, for in Isaiah 59 it speaks of these garments of His when it says He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head.
At first glance it would seem that we are responsible for faithfully wearing every piece of gear that will be needed. So we’d be responsible for learning truth so it can be effective in our day-to-day life; for living righteously—and who in our own strength can do that 100% of the time (so in those moments of failure, our armor would be incomplete); how can we wear the gospel of peace? Does that mean becoming a preacher or evangelist, even if that is not our gifting? And faith—sometimes we find our faith is strong, and then there are the difficult moments when it seems so weak. The helmet of salvation seems more clearly defined, because when we trust in the finished work of Jesus for the forgiveness of our sins, salvation is ours. Then there’s the Word: how much time is needed for study of the Word and meditating on it before it becomes an effective part of our gear? Surely if the donning of the armor depends upon us, we will face the enemy totally unprotected.
And yet we are told to “put it on.” How do we do that?
First we are to put on “truth”. Jesus said, “I am the way, the Truth and the life…” John 14:6 So Jesus is the answer; He is Truth.
Next is the breastplate of righteousness. ” But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom and righteousness….” I Cor. 1:30 Again Jesus is the answer; He is our righteousness.
Feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace—“Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures.” I Cor. 15:3,4 That is the gospel in a nutshell. Jesus is our “gospel of peace,” and He promised,” Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you.” John 14:27
Take the shield of faith. “By grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.” Eph. 2:8…and God’s gifts come to us, the branches, through our Vine, the Lord Jesus Christ. So the shield of faith becomes Jesus! In Col. 2:10 we are told that Jesus is the head of all principality and power, making it is easy to see how the shield of faith, which is Jesus, can easily quench all the fiery darts of the enemy.
Wear the helmet of salvation. “Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12 So who becomes the helmet of salvation? None other than our Jesus.
…and the sword of the Spirit (our only defensive piece of the armor) which is the Word of God…”For the Word of God is quick and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword…” Heb. 4:12 “And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.” John 1:14 The Holy Spirit, through the Living Word of God, Jesus Christ, takes the written word of God and makes it come alive to us as a defense against the lies and pressures the enemy hurls at us.
So we have our answer for the dilemma of how to successfully put on the whole armor of God: “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh.” Romans 13:14
Ephesians 6:10 says “Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”
When we put on our Lord Jesus, we have clothed ourselves in the whole armor of God. Our victory for warfare is provided by Him. Eph 6:10 says, “Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might.” When we receive Jesus into our lives as Lord and Savior, He becomes our armor. So our only responsibility in putting the armor on is the act of receiving Jesus into our lives, then actively living in obedience to His will.
This truth is emphasized in other Scriptures as well::
Col. 3:9 says “For in Him [Jesus] dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” So God is dwelling within Jesus, and when we put on Jesus, we automatically are surrounded by God as well.
Colossians 3:3 says “…your life is hid with Christ in God.” It is like three circles. We are the center with the Holy Spirit dwelling in us and with us in that area. We put on Christ and He becomes the second circle. Then God surrounds it all and what total protection our armor gives!!! Anything that touches our lives must get to us through all that protection, only as God permits it.
I read of a woman who lived her life with many fears of all the evil things that might happen in her life. One night she had a dream in which she was encased in a bubble with all those evils surrounding it, but they were helpless to penetrate that bubble. The only way they could touch her life was if God allowed a small opening to allow one through. She knew from the dream that nothing evil could touch her life unless it came to her by God’s permission, and for His purposes, and it set her free from fear.
What a blessed armor we have!! He has provided all we need for the spiritual warfare that we face and for a life of victory.