The Armor of God
by Seattle ALC
Life has changed, at least for the short term. As we try to sort out the challenges of this Covid 19 virus, there are so many things that have changed, from what we call “normal”. I think all of us, to varying degrees appreciate “normal”. Our leaders today are contemplating solutions. We can pray for the medical professionals as they seek treatment solutions for healing and for protecting us in the future. Congress is addressing the monetary issues through legislation. Let’s pray for wisdom that they will make the right and beneficial decisions, for short and long term. We also need to pray for our neighbors across the world, that we would heed the good health practices to help mitigate the spread of this deadly virus. It seems like we need an overwhelming abundance of wisdom! It is important to pray. It also is important to read and meditate on God’s Word. It has been an unfailing source of comfort and strength to all generations.
My daily Bible readings have been in Lamentations, and now in the writings of the prophet Jeremiah. They give us a perspective of the change that the nation of Israel went through. It can be difficult reading, as we wonder about how many changes we will face in the coming days. The amazing thing about the Word that God has provided for us, is that it never leaves us in a place of despair. That is, when it is rightly divided. The Apostle Paul encouraged Timothy with these words: “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15
This applies to all of us, as we all need the armor that God supplies. Below is an article from the archives of our late, Pastor Alvin Holmgren and a quote from Fredrik Wisloff, a Norwegian writer he quoted at times in his bulletins. I was encouraged by them in the light of the difficult times we face today. I pray that you may be also.
“The problem of human suffering has always interested people. Even a child of God may sometimes come into spiritual anxiety when he considers the question of the goodness of God. Dark clouds may sometimes hide the sun of God’s love. Nevertheless we need never give up our faith in God’s goodness. The child of God has in reality only one answer to all the riddles and questions: Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart (Psalm 73:1). If we let go the assurance of God’s goodness, all around us will be darkness. We may not understand His ways, but this truth remains firm as a rock: God is good. He is loving, and He is wise. He knows what He is doing, and all His works are dictated by His goodness.” –Fredrik Wisloff
THE ARMOR OF GOD
“The words “Put on the whole armor of God” speak to us of serious conflict. They indicate that although we have been called into the service of the Prince of Peace, we must prepare ourselves for war. In this warfare we must ceaselessly deal with the wiles of the devil; he has great wrath because he knows that he has but a short time (Rev. 12:12). Satan not only goes about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8), but he also transforms himself into an angel of light (II Cor.11:14). That is why Apostle Paul states that we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Eph. 6).
In describing this armor, Apostle Paul begins by saying that our loins are to be girded with truth, and we are to have on the breastplate of righteousness. These are absolute essentials for spiritual warfare. They speak to us of Christ our Lord, the only one who was successful in every conflict with Satan. Satan never succeeded in tempting Jesus; Jesus overcame Satan’s every temptation by using the Word. If we are to overcome this enemy, we must remember that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds (II Cor. 10:3-4).
Communion with the Lord in prayer and reading of God’s Word are of vital importance to our spiritual health and success in this warfare. We must always be in communion with the One who leads us in this daily conflict so that we will hear His voice, that we will know His leading, and by His grace, we will abide in His will.
Jesus told His disciples to work while it is day because the night was coming when no man can work (John 9:4). Men ought always to pray and not to faint. Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life (Jude 3 and 21)”
From the Archives of the late Pastor Alvin Holmgren- June 2004
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