It is important to have armor covering vulnerable areas. This week we are covering the shoes – which are very important!
In the movie Miss Congeniality, Gracie Lou explains to the audience how to get away from an attacker. Do you remember her basic tip of self-defense: “Just remember to SING?” This scene came to mind as I was studying and learning about the next piece of armor because the I in SING is “instep,” which is part of the foot. It is one of four sensitive areas you can use to immediately take an attacker out. This is why it is so important to protect this part of the body completely and securely.
The pieces of armor all fit together well, and I believe that Paul put these pieces in a specific order. As you put on one, it sets you up to successfully put on and use the next. Peace comes from knowing what truth is (Belt), and one aspect of peace is received immediately when you are made righteous (Breastplate). Let me explain.
Peace With God
There are two types of peace. Peace with God and peace of God. Peace with God is given once a person accepts Jesus as Lord of their life.
Romans 5:1 (NLT) Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.
When we put on the breastplate of righteousness we are at peace with God. Satan will try to make us doubt our righteousness and get us to live in fear instead of peace. Don’t let him! Be confident of your standing with God. Because of Jesus you are made right, you are a child of God and you can never lose your place in His family. Don’t allow Satan to steal your peace with God.
Peace of God
But God doesn’t stop there, He wants us to have the peace OF God.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Satan’s second line of attack against our peace is to make us doubt, or live in fear, worry or anxiety. Unfortunately we live in a fallen, sinful world. No matter how many good, wise decisions we make, we will have trials and battles we will have to overcome. When those situations hit, Satan’s first plan is to steal your peace. If he can make you waver and start to doubt or live in fear he has a chance to rock your world and steal your faith.
The Roman soldiers’ shoes were not simple sandals; they were complex! First, they started just below the knee, went down the leg, and covered the whole foot. Then they placed 1-3 inch spikes on the bottom of their shoes so that they could firmly plant their feet in any terrain they found themselves in. Imagine soccer shin guards that connected to football cleats.
As a defensive weapon, the shoes protected the soldiers shins from bruises, cuts and blows that would cripple the soldier. Have you ever been hit in the shin? It stings a little, or really, it kills a lot! Most of the time in immediately makes you bend over, taking you off guard and unable to fully protect yourself from another attack. The shin guard or grieves were made out of brass and protected the soldier from direct blows to the shin or from thorns, brush and rocks that happened to be in the path of the soldier.
In our lives when we are covered with God’s peace. It can cover our minds and emotions, and protect us from financial, relationship, work, and family blows to our shins. When they come, they don’t have to immediately get us to double over. We don’t have to get bruised and torn up every time we face these attacks. We can be protected by peace.
Philippians 4:7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Colossians 3:15 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.
2 Thessalonians 3:16 Now may the Lord of peace himself give you his peace at all times and in every situation. The Lord be with you all.
The shoes of peace also represent peace as an offensive weapon. There was a second reason that the soldiers put spikes on the bottom of their feet. They not only gave them traction, but they also wanted to completely destroy everything in their path, and a kick from these spiked shoes would really do some damage!
In the same way, when we allow peace to rule and reign in our lives, we make it impossible for Satan to take us out. We stop him in his tracks and crush his ability to attack. So we can actually take out Satan with our Shoes of peace as an offensive weapon. First, we have to remember that God has already defeated Satan. Satan has already lost, but he is tricky and will try to make us forget this very important fact. He will make us feel overwhelmed by the task at hand and make us doubt our ability to overcome.
John 16:33 (NIV) “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Romans 16:20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. May the grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.
There is one caveat: we have to be walking in order to crush Satan. We have to learn about peace, accept it and then walk in it.
1 Peter 3:11 Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it
To do this we have to know what truth is…we have to make sure our belt of truth is firmly in place. Then we will know when the lies are circling around in our heads, and we can kick them off before they take root. We can bind our heart and mind together with the peace of God and allow that peace to rule and reign instead.
When we or our children have thoughts of worry, doubt or fear we need to stop and seek out scripture to stand on. We need to renew our minds to think only things that are good and of God. Then we can stand firm against Satan because we will know the truth and it will set us free.
I will leave you with two last verses. These are my prayers for you:
Romans 15:13 I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 15:33 And now may God, who gives us his peace, be with you all. Amen.
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Armor of God: Goals and Armor
Armor of God: Belt of Truth
Armor of God: Breastplate of Righteousness