Ephesians 6.11, 16 NIV
“Put on the full armor of God so you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.”
“In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.”
I am assaulted by the “flaming arrows of the evil one” every single day. Thoughts of failure, disappointment, and resignation crowd my mind. I sometimes question myself… my calling, my abilities, my resources, my resolve. “Do I have what it takes? Will I make it?”
I imagine an other-worldly conversation between “spiritual forces... in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6.12). Jesus and the angels are rooting for me. They are instilling in me the confidence necessary to stand up to demonic bullies and expect to win. There is an active spiritual battle for the welfare of my soul. I sense it. Constant, quiet yet noticeably present, the combat intensifies around me. Demonic forces contend for the control of my mind and tempt me to acquiesce to their malevolent will.
In the face of this temptation, I am commanded to “stand firm”. I may feel shaky but I must remain standing. Perhaps this attack on my spirit is part of God’s plan, testing my dependence upon Jesus and slowly ridding me of what is not of Him. Scripture refers to “the removing of what can be shaken – that is, created things – so that what cannot be shaken may remain” (Hebrews 12.26-28). I am one of His beloved “created things” and I “can be shaken”, but the part of me that is of Christ will remain. I am receiving “a kingdom that cannot be shaken”
There is an effective defense against the “flaming arrows of the evil one”. God allows the devil’s assault to develop in me a strong internal defense system. God may believe in me more than I do. He possesses for me the confidence I myself lack. He permits Satan take his best shot and offers me “the shield of faith” to deflect the arrows of my enemy. My faith is in Jesus Christ who alone enables me to stand up under any pressure. I don’t have to fold, cave, give up, acquiesce, or surrender. I may rest and remain content to trust Him who is my strong defense. I believe. My faith in Him is a shield that will “extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one”.
The "Stand Firm" logo was created by Steve Davis of Cranium Designs for a Campus Crusade for Christ conference and used here with his permission. You can find out more about Steve's Hayward, California-based company and his excellent graphics work at http://www.craniumdesigns.com/.