I was challenged the other day while reading a piece written by a dad whose adult child had gone through some very difficult things. Reflecting on Ephesians 6:10-17, he said that he had a shiny suit of armor hanging on his wall. It looked nice and gave off a feeling of strength. He talked about it from time to time and even showed it to people who came by for a visit, but he never took it down or put it on. The crisis his family went through taught him that the armor was meant to be used, to be scratched and dented during the battle.
This word picture made me ask about my own armor of God. Do I use it daily or is it just ceremonial? If I’m not using it, why not? Am I just unaware, do I rationalize it away, or do I think other things will be more effective? If I do use it, how do I use it? Is it just to protect me and my interests? Do I ever go on an offensive campaign? Am I a soldier engaged in a war fought on many fronts or am I just concerned about my own small plot of land?
I fear that many of us have been conditioned by rationalism and the Enlightenment to ignore the spiritual battle that rages around us. We also ignore the tools God has given us to engage in the fight as part of His army. We don’t unlock the truths of Ephesians 6 and rarely put on the full armor of God. Perhaps it’s time for a Kingdom of God reality check. The truth is we are in a war. The battlefield is both visible and invisible. The stakes are eternal. We must engage the battle and fight with every weapon at our disposal. To do otherwise is at best foolishness and at worst direct disobedience.