“A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
Ephesians 6:10-17 NLT
Last week we talked about giving what you have. Not giving money, but what God has put on the inside of you. That can be difficult when we have our own insecurities and issues internally that we’re dealing with. Even still, it’s not impossible. It’s just very difficult, especially when your biggest enemy can be YOU. But once you’ve taken the time to allow God to deal with you on the inside and strengthen you, now you can start putting your hands to plow for the work He has called you to.
I’ve heard my pastor say, “If you can accomplish your dream on your own then it’s not big enough.” In other words, don’t rely on your own strength. God said, “It is not by might or by power. It is by His Spirit.” The inner working of the Holy Spirit manifested through us is what accomplishes the will of God. It’s not of our own works or we could boast about it. Not just the Holy Spirit in me or you, but the Spirit of God in us collectively coming together to bring God’s will to pass.
It’s the working of the Spirit that gets us past our own selves as an obstacle and outside of ourselves to do the impossible. Our faith is an overcoming faith. I like to quote one of my favorite books by Watchman Nee called “Sit, Walk, Stand.” He says these are the positions of the believer taught in the book of Ephesians.
We’re seated in heavenly places in Christ, we walk out our faith in Christ and we stand against the enemy. I particularly want to focus on the stand portion. We stand in a place of victory. In Christ we aren’t fighting for victory. We fight to keep the victory we already have. It is the gift of God. He has already made it available and given it to those who have chosen to receive it.
The odds are against us in this world. We are fish swimming upstream against the strong current of this world, but there is nothing we can’t overcome by the power of Christ. Jesus said that without Him it is impossible, but with God all things are possible. Even in pleasing God we need God. Other religions are trying to earn what God graciously gives to us just by believing in His Son. Through Him we overcome.
As we celebrate the resurrection this week this is a reminder that dead things can live again. We were once dead in our sins, but God through the death, burial and resurrection of Christ was able to bring us back to life again. Now we can overcome any odds.
That leads us to our Throwback Song of the Week. We go to a vet from Philly J. Johnson fka J-Silas. This from his 2009 project entitled “The Struggle.” This song is called “The Odd’s.” An encouragement to keep moving forward in Christ. Bump this in your ride or in your earbuds. It’s a BANGER!! Until next time…
Peace and blessings,