Excerpted from Chapter 13 of Boot Camp: Equipping Men with Integrity for Spiritual Warfare:
The LORD has opened his armory and brought out the weapons of
his wrath, for the Lord GOD of hosts has a work to do. (Jer 50.25)
The Lord’s armory stands before us. We’ve noted and carefully reflected on the ancient words etched above its door.
BE STRONG IN THE LORD
AND IN THE STRENGTH OF HIS MIGHT
As we humbly and reverently take our last steps in the Boot Camp of the King of kings, we notice the Holy Spirit’s timeless admonition engraved along the walls of the armory’s corridor.
The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil 4.5-7)
God has very plainly promised to do his part. He is faithful. Not only is salvation from sin and forgiveness of past betrayals available to each image-bearer, but indescribable peace in the midst of future trials is accessible. Even the hearts and minds of the soldiers of the cross can be securely guarded in Jesus. God is faithful.
Now he urges us to do what only we can do. Each one must individually determine to be strong in the strength which the Lord supplies. The means provided for fallible men to access and exhibit God’s strength is a full suit of spiritual armor forged in the fires of pure and holy glory. “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil” (Eph 6.11).
Note carefully the instructions that come with entrance to the armory. God’s strength is not some magical force that will somehow mysteriously envelop the warrior of truth. We’ve not been left the luxury of sitting back and expecting our King to singlehandedly deliver us from the Destroyer of men’s souls without any effort of our own. We are called to take up God’s holy armor and prepare for battle! Now is the time to be on high alert, constantly watching for potential attacks. War has already been declared on each of our spirits. We must answer the call, take up the whole armor of God, find our place in the line of holiness, and courageously engage the spiritual forces of evil.
How foolish to wait for the attacks of the Enemy before we would ever prepare for battle! If we fail, we cannot accuse our Father of failing to stand by us or neglecting to provide for our needs. If we fail, the failure is ours. Our Father has revealed his eternal plan of redemption. His Son has paid the price to free penitent prisoners of war from bondage. The Holy Spirit has led us to the armory of God. Every element that is necessary to overwhelmingly conquer has been made available. We’ve reached the end of this Boot Camp experience, now it’s up to us to put on the armor of light.
You know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. (Rom 13.11-12)
War is upon us. If we wait to prepare, we don’t stand a chance.
Other posts in this series on the armor of God: