In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Ephesians 6:16
Imagine that you are caught in the middle of an intense battle. On one side is an army with chariots and archers that have a lock on your position. The archers have wrapped their arrowheads with tar and pitch; then, at the last second, they light their arrows on fire to assure your destruction. Together they unleash the fury upon you and your fellow soldiers. The only escape from the wrath raining down on you is to hide under the protection of your shield. By putting up your shield as a protective barrier, you can save yourself and fight another day.
So many of us miss that, in this Forgotten War, Satan is hard at work hurling his fiery arrows in our direction. These flaming arrows come in various forms: lust, pride, greed, power, lies, and more. The devil knows that a single spark can get the best of us and quickly trap us in. It can be the girl at work who wears exceptionally tight clothes, catching you quickly into a fantasy world. It could be that Amazon Prime day gets extended and your electronic shopping cart gets filled with more than your paycheck can handle, trapping you in materialism and debt. It may be that someone shares a compliment, and instead of being humble, you puff yourself up with pride. Satan's arrows fly constantly. We contend with them all day long.
The Apostle Paul gave us an answer for a clear defense. He encouraged the church to take up the shield of faith. Instead of making ourselves an easy target for the enemy, Paul challenged us to put our hope in God alone as our protective barrier. The only way we can make it through this intense spiritual battle that is often unseen and forgotten is by holding onto our faith. We have to believe that God is able to bring us through and to give us the victory. We have to find our protection in Him. Are you ready to stand against the assault of Satan's fiery darts?
When you think about your own life, how do you find the strength to stand against Satan's fiery arrows? Take some time to journal and to process the effort that you put into suiting up with the shield of faith. If you have never put your faith in God, you stand with zero protection against Satan's attacks. You are an easy target for his rain of fire. If that is where you stand today, we encourage you to take the next step of Accepting Christ. On your Sagebrush App, you can click the decisions button to connect with a pastor. Or, we would challenge you to go to our decision room this weekend at church. Today, hold onto the shield of faith! It is our only hope in this battle!
Read Psalm 18:1-24 (NLT)
For the choir director: A psalm of David, the servant of the Lord. He sang this song to the Lord on the day the Lord rescued him from all his enemies and from Saul. He sang:
I love you, Lord; you are my strength.The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.I called on the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and he saved me from my enemies.
The ropes of death entangled me; floods of destruction swept over me.The grave wrapped its ropes around me; death laid a trap in my path.But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help.He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears.
Then the earth quaked and trembled. The foundations of the mountains shook; they quaked because of his anger.Smoke poured from his nostrils; fierce flames leaped from his mouth. Glowing coals blazed forth from him.He opened the heavens and came down; dark storm clouds were beneath his feet.Mounted on a mighty angelic being, he flew, soaring on the wings of the wind.He shrouded himself in darkness, veiling his approach with dark rain clouds.Thick clouds shielded the brightness around him and rained down hail and burning coals.The Lord thundered from heaven; the voice of the Most High resounded amid the hail and burning coals.He shot his arrows and scattered his enemies; great bolts of lightning flashed, and they were confused.Then at your command, O Lord, at the blast of your breath,the bottom of the sea could be seen, and the foundations of the earth were laid bare.
He reached down from heaven and rescued me; he drew me out of deep waters.He rescued me from my powerful enemies, from those who hated me and were too strong for me.They attacked me at a moment when I was in distress, but the Lord supported me.He led me to a place of safety; he rescued me because he delights in me.The Lord rewarded me for doing right; he restored me because of my innocence.For I have kept the ways of the Lord; I have not turned from my God to follow evil.I have followed all his regulations; I have never abandoned his decrees.I am blameless before God; I have kept myself from sin.The Lord rewarded me for doing right. He has seen my innocence.
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