The Shield of Faith
Updated: Sep 15
Above all, taking the shield of faith with which, you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. Ephesians 6:1
Have you ever watched a boxing match and one boxer gets a really good punch in on his opponent in an unprotected area? His opponent was caught with his guard down which gave him the opportunity to go in for the damaging blow. This blow renders the recipient vulnerable in that particular area. When the fighter realizes the recipient is hurt in that spot, he strategically and continuously aims his forceful punches at the place of injury in an effort to cause more pain, exhaust him, and more sooner than later knock him out or cause him to throw in the towel. Either way, his goal is to cause his opponent to lose the fight.
This devastating blow is what is called the good ole sucker punch. One definition of sucker punch is; a punch made without warning or while the recipient is distracted, allowing no time for preparation or defense on the part of the recipient. In like manner, this is how the enemy works in warfare. He seeks to catch us with our guards down so that he can go in with the one, two, three or more punch; consecutive unexpected blows sent to cause us to lose our fight of faith.
In our fight of faith, we cannot afford to be exposed, unprotected, distracted or caught off guard. Just as the aggressive fighter in a boxing match the enemy will aggressively and strategically aim his fiery arrows at our vulnerable places when we least expect it. One of his main tactics is to reinjure places of past trauma and areas that we struggle in. His intention is to re-puncture wounds of hurt, rejection, abandonment, abuse, condemnation, betrayal, and offense.
He's a cunning tempter and will use areas of struggle such as lust, gossip, addiction to drugs, alcohol, or pornography. He'll stir up and craftily orchestrate conflict in relationships. These are just some of the wiles that the enemy will use to distract, discourage and cause us to doubt God, and His Word.
He schemes, lies, assaults, and sets up devices and false imaginations in a brutal effort for us to cause our faith to falter. Yes, if you have noticed by now, he’s after our faith. Because without faith it’s impossible to please God by living an overcoming life that extinguishes the fiery darts aimed strategically at our sensitive and exposed areas.
Whether the enemy aims his arrows at our tender spots or attempts to create fresh wounds in new points of entry we must know that he is a liar, a thief, and murderer and has been from the beginning of time.
Scripture tells us that he came to steal, kill and destroy. (John 10:10) The good news is that Jesus came that we may have life and life more abundantly and no one, not even the evil one will be able to snatch us out of His hand!
Faith is key and Jesus is the Faith Maker. Faith originates from Him as He is the author of our faith. Also, He is the perfecter of our faith. His sustaining power is unmatched. No matter the flaming arrow, spear, or punch the enemy sends our way, if we keep our eyes on the Lord, our hearts attentive to the truths in His Word, and believe, we will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the enemy and not be caught defenseless and unaware. In this world, we will have tribulation but this we also know; we are able to overcome because Jesus already overcame.
Trusting and believing in God to carry out His Word in spite of how we feel, how things appear, or how many fiery darts are aimed at us is in essence taking up the shield of faith. Combating the fiery arrows with unwavering faith in our omnipotent God, and believing in His infallible Word soaks the enemy’s fiery darts by casting down lies, annihilating fear, destroying doubt, leading us not unto temptation, and delivers us from evil.
The shield of faith is very significant in our warfare. Paul instructs, Above all, taking the shield of faith. The shield of faith for the Roman soldier protected and covered the majority of their body. In battle, the Roman soldier's enemies goal would be to penetrate the shield. If they could puncture the shield they could do damage to the other pieces of armor behind it, leaving the soldier in harm's way. This is why the shield of faith is key in our spiritual warfare as it safeguards and ignites all the other pieces of armor.
The Roman soldier’s shields of choice at this time were called scutum shields. Because of their size and weight, the soldier would plant the shield on the ground, huddle behind it for protection and would come from behind it when need be to attack the enemy with the sword.
The shield would enable the soldier to be positioned, planted, protected, and triumphant in battle. They were multi-purposed in design. The shield served as a protective barricade, were used to push back, resist the enemy, and quench the fiery darts. The protective shields were made of layers of heavy wood and covered in animal hide. The animal hide covering would be soaked in water so that when the fiery arrows would hit, they would be quenched.
The fiery darts were flaming arrows tipped with flammable substances that would be set on fire as a tactic of warfare and intimidation.
In our warfare, the enemy of our soul uses tactics of intimidation, false imaginations, accusations, frustrations, and temptations to rob us of our faith. But this we know, he is no match at all for the Lord of Heaven’s Armies! Jehovah-Nissi; the Lord our Banner! Mighty in battle! Our Shield and our exceedingly great reward!
After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward. Genesis 15:1
It is in God's power that we arise triumphantly! May our hearts rejoice and be woven with David’s as He gives praise to the Lord,
"Praise the Lord who is my rock. He trains my hands for war and gives my fingers skill for battle. He is my loving ally and my fortress and my tower of safety, my rescuer. He is my shield and I take refuge in Him." Psalm 144:1-2 Hallelujah!! Praise the Lord!
Be greatly encouraged! God has given us all the measure of faith and everything we need to fight the good fight of faith! In His strength, we are able to push back the enemy by taking God at His Word and refusing to doubt. When we doubt our shield of faith begins to stagger leaving us exposed and open for the fiery darts of the enemy.
Refuse to give him room! Super soak those fiery arrows by combating them with faith and the Word of God! Not by might nor by power but by God's Spirit! This makes our shields impenetrable every time. Yes, the weapon will form, the blazing darts will be aimed and fired but we will not burn!
Just as the Roman soldier would plant his shield firmly on the ground for stability, positioning, and protection, in like manner we must make it our aim to be positioned and firmly planted on the Rock; abiding in Him and His word abiding in us.
He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. Psalms 91:4
When we plant the Word of God deep in the soil of our hearts it empowers us to live justly and the just live by faith. Faith in God and trusting in His faithfulness and ability to perform His word.
"Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him." (Proverbs 30:5) I love this Scripture because it divinely encapsulates the shield of faith. God’s Holy Word. God Himself as a shield combined with a secure trust in Him that provides us with an imperishable, incorruptible, impenetrable shield of faith that smothers every fiery arrow the enemy!
Now, I'm sure we can all agree that we're living in some pretty hard to deal with times and over time the fiery darts combined with the cares of this life can try our faith and cause doubt to seep in. This is the enemy's goal to get us discouraged and in a mindset of unbelief rendering us defeated and ineffective for the kingdom of God.
The sporadic disruptions, uncertainties, and fiery darts coming our way can be staggering at times, and it can seem like more than we can bear. Yet we are reminded to walk by faith and not by sight; not walking by what we see but walking with spiritual eyes aimed at Jesus, spiritual ears open to the Word. Walking in the Spirit, being empowered, led, and guided step by step from glory to glory and faith to faith.
Oh, we are in much need of faith in this hour. Not a superficial or casual kind of faith. That kind of faith will not keep us. No, in order to stand firm and quench the fiery darts of the enemy we need a deep abiding and enduring faith. Faith that keeps you when you're grieving the loss of a loved one. Faith that undergirds you when you're battling serious health issues. Faith that braces you in a world full of uncertainty and chaos.
Faith that bolsters you when you face persecution. That "keeping" kind of faith that when your marriage is on the rocks, kids going down the wrong path kind of faith that won't bow. You won't go under but you stand on the promises of God! A relentless faith that keeps your feet firmly planted on the road to recovery! You won't go back to what had you bound! Unwavering faith that remains after the devastating storm. That, "I won't let go until You bless me," kind of faith! This is the victory that has overcome the world! Our faith!
I heard somewhere that faith untested is no faith at all. May I add, how else would our faith mature, become unwavering, durable, and ignited unless it was refined in the fire.
Hear the Word of the Lord through the Apostle Paul, and it is a quite applicable, and encouraging truth for us today.
Let's incline our hearts to hear,
"In this greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith the salvation of your souls." 1 Peter 1:6-9
Be mightily encouraged! If you be a child of God, you have the incredible greatness of God; His power for us who believe; the same mighty power that raised Jesus from the dead. (Ephesians 1:20-22)
Hold fast to your faith. When your faith begins to waver, go to God and pray in faith. Take heed to the Word of God, for faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17) Be mindful to make the Lord your habitation and you will not be afraid of the terror by night, nor the arrow that flies by day. Make the Most High your dwelling place and no evil shall befall you. (Psalm 91:10-12)
No sucker punch or blazing arrow of the enemy will consume you! It may daze you, it may cause you pain, it may knock the wind out of you, it may look like you're fighting a losing battle but I exhort you to keep fighting in the strength of the Lord! Don't dare throw in that towel!
Significantly, we are not to be ignorant of the enemy's devices but we are not to be consumed with him either. Rather be consumed with God, His Word, and the fire of the Holy Spirit! Walking in the Spirit. Not fulfilling the lusts of the flesh, thus resisting the enemy and dousing his fiery darts.
Persevere in the faith. Keep stifling those fiery darts. Keep blocking those blows. Keep pushing back, resisting the enemy. Keep utilizing your Sword of the Spirit; the word of God! Your victory is sealed in the blood of Jesus! Keep your eyes on Him!
Again, keep the faith so that unless Jesus tarries when we approach the end of our journey we will be able to agree with Paul, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. (2 Timothy 4:7)
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world, our faith.
1 John 5:4
For further study:
John 8:44 Romans 12:3 John 10:28 Matthew 6:13 1 Peter 5:8 Lamentations 3:21
Ephesians 1:19-22 Psalms 91:4 Psalm 32:7 Romans 12:3 Galatians 5:16 Hebrews 11:6
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