Confident Under Attack
It is difficult to be calm under pressure, and confident when under attack. Many Christians think that they must defend themselves when Satan does His worst, but they are wrong. … 'having done everything' … simply means being willing to wear God's protection, the full/entire/whole armour of God, and then to stand still in the Lord as the battle rages (Luke 12:11-12). It is an act of humility and an admission of weakness as we submit to God's solution (James 4:7). Proud and self-reliant people cannot be defended because they think they are strong enough. Yes, we need wisdom, self-control, and right behaviour every day but we cannot protect ourselves from evil. Although personal disciplines help us to recognise spiritual attack when it comes, we need the armour which God has revealed in His Word (Ephesians 6:14-18). Our own best efforts will fail. But when we have faithfully applied all that God shows us in these verses, we are ready to withstand any attack of evil.
The first defence against evil is truth, because Satan is a liar (John 8:44). Truth is likened to a Roman military belt. It holds all the rest of the battle-gear in place, and secures loose clothing so that we will not trip up (Hebrews 12:1). The belt of truth allows freedom of movement combined with security: the different pieces of armour overlap to prevent any weak place for the enemy lance or arrow. The belt also holds the sword (which is the Word of God) in a position where it can be used to cut through lies, when needed (Ephesians 6:17). Freedom lies in knowing the truth and working within its limits (John 8:32).
Truth is often the first casualty of any conflict. After it has gone, there is neither integrity nor trustworthiness. That is often how the battle started in the first place – somebody believed a lie. Any fighting unit knows that if you cannot rely on your fellow soldiers, the battle is all but lost. Truth (not frenzied activity) is the essential ingredient in fellowship, and the only antidote to the devil's nerve gas of lies (2 John 1:1-4). But make sure you wear the authentic uniform. Truth is not manufactured or invented to suit the soldier's convenience. It is made and given by God: it is only 'regulation issue' when it is straight from the Bible. If we wear it properly, we (and many others) will benefit. If we reject it or wear it carelessly, we will suffer, the Lord's cause will be discredited, and others will suffer.
Today is a great day to take truth from its Bible store and wear it. Do not let it get loose for a minute in the boardroom or on the shop floor, in the canteen or the project meeting. And keep it on during the informal conversations and after work - where your guard can often slip. The more you exercise truth, the more trustworthy you will become; with your fellow believers at work, and in the family and church. After the battle, the banner of Jesus will move forward again, and so will you!
© Dr Paul Adams