Berean Bible Study Notes

The Armor of God



 





Put on the whole Armor of God

Let today be a beginning. For me, for you. Let this day be the start of filling our lamps with oil. Let this be the time that we got very, very serious about being ready for Jesus' return. I have spent a lot of time praying, and I have become convinced that it was absolutely imperative that if there was ever going to be a time when people got a handle on God's Word, it needs to be NOW. Why? Because deception is coming. There has always been deception, from the very first day that Satan spoke in the garden - but Jesus talks of a day of great deception:

Matthew 24:3 As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. "Tell us," they said, "when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?"

4 Jesus answered: "Watch out that no one deceives you.

24 For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect - if that were possible. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time.

Paul speaks of that, too:

2 Thessalonians 2:1 Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers, 2 not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy, report or letter supposed to have come from us, saying that the day of the Lord has already come. 3 Don't let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction.

The word "the" is definitely there in the Greek. This is THE rebellion, not any rebellion. The word "rebellion" is apostasia (ap-os-tas-ee'-ah), from which we get the word "apostasy." The King James says "falling away." It means "a defection, revolt, apostasy," or to fall away from the truth or to forsake the truth.

Paul says more about it here:

2 Timothy 4:1 In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: 2 Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage - with great patience and careful instruction. 3 For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.



1 Timothy 4:1 The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.



This may be talking about people who consider themselves Christian - or possibly have been raised to at least know the truth. It may be talking about church bodies that had known the truth. In any case, this doesn't refer to outright unbelievers, but to those who have at least called themselves part of the "church." You can't abandon the faith unless you've had some semblance of the faith to begin with.



Daniel 11:35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.



2 Corinthians 11:2 I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. 3 But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.



2 Peter 2:1 But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them - bringing swift destruction on themselves. 2 Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute.



So, what does Paul say we need to do?



2 Thessalonians 2:9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, 10 and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.

2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we ought always to thank God for you, brothers loved by the Lord, because from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. 14 He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15 So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the teachings we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.



We are to stand firm - holding to the teachings of the Bible. How? We need to put on the full armor of God:



Ephesians 6:10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.



Be strong in the Lord is a command. The rest goes on to show you how to be strong in the Lord. The "finally" is more like "from this point on," or "finish this way." The "be strong" is endunamoo (en-doo-nam-o'-o), and it means to "make strong." It's the same idea as in Philippians 4:13:

Philippians 4:13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength.



It is God who gives you strength. The New King James says it this way:

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.



It means the same thing, but it's even clearer that it's in the power of HIS might - not ours. He has all the strength we'll ever need. We, alone, will never have enough. Interestingly, the "be strong" is in the present tense, as you'd expect, but in the passive voice, just as you'd say, "The boy was hit by the ball." The subject of the sentence, the implied "you," is actually the recipient of the action.

Put on the full armor of God: The "put on" is "be clothed with." It's in the aorist tense, which means it has an element of being outside of time. The "mood" of the verb is imperative, meaning this is an absolute command again.

So, where does that leave us? First, with the understanding that we need God's strength, not our own. Don't rely on yourself. Rely on Jesus. This is not entirely passive, though. The "put on the full armor of God" is something that you are actively doing.

Here is the rest of that verse:

Ephesians 6:11 (NKJV) Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.



"Whole armor" is panoplia (pan-op-lee'-ah). Among the Greeks the panoplia was the complete equipment used by heavily armed infantry. In other words, this means put on everything. "May be able to stand" means to be able to stand firm in your faith, or stand firm on what you have believed, as here:

1 Corinthians 15:1 Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand.

It's in the active, aorist tense. So, again, there is an element of being outside of time. It's kind of saying, so you will be able to stand forever. The "wiles" in the NKJV or "devil's schemes" in the NIV is methodeia {meth-od-i'-ah}. We get our word "method" from the same root. In this case, it means the trickery of the devil. He doesn't draw attention to himself as the devil, as evil. The Bible says that he was created "perfect in beauty." Remember this verse:

2 Corinthians 11:14 And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. 15 It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.



Back to our verses:

Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV) For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

That wrestle or struggle as the NIV says, is not physical wrestling, of course, although it may feel like that sometimes. In Greek, the word means "a contest between two in which each endeavours to throw the other, and which is decided when the victor is able to hold his opponent down with his hand upon his neck" according to the Blueletterbible. For us, it means that constant struggle against the devil, the world and our sinful flesh, as Martin Luther put it. It's anything that draws us away from God.

So, what are principalities, powers, rulers, and spiritual hosts of wickedness? They are ranks of angels, and specifically, the fallen angels. "In the heavenly places" is not in heaven in this case, as we normally think of it, but more like as here:

Ephesians 2:1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient.



As you watch TV and see angry mobs of Islamic protesters or the murder of a little girl or the stealing of a newborn infant and attempted murder of her mother, remember that our struggle is not against flesh and blood. It's really with the powers that are controlling those people.



Back to our text:

Ephesians 6:13 (NKJV) Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Ephesians 6:13 (NIV) Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.



The "take up" or "put on" in the NIV is active, aorist, imperative. It is a command, for you to do. It means to take up a thing in order to carry or use it. It means putting on this armor and getting ready to use it. The "withstand" or "stand your ground" is not exactly the same word as in verse 11. This time it means to resist or oppose or to set yourself against something. It's active, aorist and infinitive, which is like an active state of doing something (to teach, to believe, to withstand) with an outside of time element to it.

"The evil day" or "the day of evil" has the definite article with it. It is THE evil day - not just any evil day. The word translated "day" can mean an actual day or it can mean a period of time. Having done all and after you have done everything means when you have completed your work, all that God asks you to do. After you've finished your work, run your course, you will stand for always. Remember, there are three kinds of salvation. There is the salvation of your soul (justification), the salvation of your life (sanctification) and the salvation of your body (resurrection and living eternally with Jesus):



Matthew 10:22 All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.

 

Ephesians 6:14 (NIV) Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

Ephesians 6:14 (NKJV) Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.



Paul wrote this while he was under house arrest in Rome. He had his own house, but a Roman soldier was right there with him at all times. It's easy to picture Paul using the soldier as an analogy, and he probably was! (I bet many soldiers assigned to Paul became Christians) However, Paul was also quoting Isaiah:

Isaiah 59:17 He put on righteousness as his breastplate, and the helmet of salvation on his head; he put on the garments of vengeance and wrapped himself in zeal as in a cloak.



What does it mean to have the belt of truth buckled around your waist? A Roman solder had a big, wide, thick belt that both protected him and was the place to fasten his other equipment to. Everything starts with having the truth. You can't have a false idea of God or His Word and be able to "fasten" anything to that. We need to know that God's Word - all of it - is true. We need to know that God took on human flesh, died on a cross and rose again. You've got to start with God's truth, as He sees it. Not "well that's true for you, but I have a different truth."

Unless you start with the truth, everything else is meaningless. In Roman soldier terms, you have nothing to buckle your equipment to.

The breastplate of righteousness - what is that? First, what is the breastplate? That's the plate that goes over your chest and protects your vital organs. It's your most important piece of equipment after your belt of truth. On a Roman soldier, the breastplate was firmly attached and anchored to his belt. It kept the breastplate from slipping out of place. How do you get this righteousness? Simply trusting in Jesus as your Savior, right? Well, don't we wear that all the time, if we are Christians? Do we? Or, do we let doubts creep in? The breastplate is the righteousness found only in Christ - what God sees when He looks at us, if we belong to Jesus. It's not our righteousness, but we often think of it that way. We don't mean to, and in our heads, we know the right answer. Yet, we keep feeling that way. However, if it is our righteousness, we fail to keep that breastplate in place, don't we?

When we sin, it gives Satan an opportunity to sling his evil at us. You know those fiery darts don't you? I know I do! "Look at you! Look what you did! And you call yourself a Christian! You can't help anyone! You can't even help yourself! You're pathetic!" That's when you need to remember that it was Jesus who paid for those sins - Jesus' righteousness that God sees, not yours. That breastplate is like Jesus standing in front of you. His sacrifice was enough - completely enough. When you let those darts in, you are essentially saying that Jesus' sacrifice wasn't enough. No - God says, "Keep that breastplate in place." In a way, it's the cross - between you and whatever Satan is throwing at you. Stay behind that cross.



Ephesians 6:14(NIV) Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.

Ephesians 6:14 (NKJV) Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;



And having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace - What does that mean? That word "readiness" or "preparation" appears only here in the New Testament. In the Septuagint version (Greek translation) of the Old Testament, it's also here:



Psalm 89:14 Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; love and faithfulness go before you.

 

There, the Hebrew means a fixture, or a dwelling place, a settled place of habitation. What in the world does it mean, then, to shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace? It means you have truly settled in to the Gospel. That's where you dwell. As your feet support the rest of your body, so this true understanding of the Gospel supports everything about your life. You have the absolute knowing that you can trust God. You absolutely know that you are forgiven. You absolutely know that God's promises are real. You KNOW that Jesus died for your sins and rose again.

What does that absolute knowing do for you? It makes you ready to speak that same good news to others:



Romans 10:14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!"



1 Peter 3:15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.



If you are a Christian, your life is meant to be a ministry. We are full-time Christians, even if we are not called into public ministry as some are. If our feet are truly shod with the gospel of peace, we can not only stand, we can take that good news to others. Your feet were made for walking! If the gospel is the foundation of your life, you are READY for walking.

Ephesians 6:16 (NIV) In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

Ephesians 6:16 (NKJV) above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.



That "above all" in the NKJV can be really confusing. The NIV is much clearer with "in addition to all this." Take up the shield of faith - A Roman shield was a big, heavy thing. It was rectangular and went from knees to chin. You could set it on the ground and kneel behind it. You could group with other soldiers and make an almost impenetrable barrier. But, what kind of faith are we talking here? You can have faith in a lot of things. Sure, we know the right answer is: "Faith in God and His promises. Faith that what He says is true. Faith that Jesus really is God and really took our sins away on the cross. Faith that trusts the goodness of God and takes Romans 8:28 to heart (And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.)

But, when it comes right down to it, is your faith dependent on something? I'll have faith in the goodness of God as long as I have a nice house and nice clothes? I'll have faith in the goodness of God as long as the bank stays open and my job is secure? I'll have faith in the goodness of God as long as He keeps my children safe? (that last one is a toughie, isn't it?)

Will your faith stay strong if a terrorist attack hits too close to home? Will it stay strong if our economy is in a shambles and your portfolio is worthless paper? If the electricity went out and stayed out? The day of evil is coming. There is one coming to the whole world, but your personal "day of evil" could be anytime. I'm not saying that any of these things will necessarily happen, but God may very well test your faith in some way. He says He tests Israel:



Isaiah 48:10 See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.



Zechariah 13:9 This third I will bring into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, 'They are my people,' and they will say, 'The LORD is our God.'"



And, He says the same thing for all believers:



1 Peter 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade - kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that your faith - of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire - may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.



Job 23:10 But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.



Psalm 66:10 For you, O God, tested us; you refined us like silver.



Romans 5:3 Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

True faith will be refined, not destroyed during the fiery trials. We know that true faith is a gift:

Ephesians 2:8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.



As Christians, we each have some measure of faith. The Bible says that we don't have equal amounts. We don't have equal amounts within our own lives, either. Sometimes I may have great faith. Other times I seem to have little faith. We are given more faith as we stay in God's Word:

Romans 10:17 Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.



And we can ask for more faith:

Luke 17:5 The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith !"



Although, if you read what Jesus says to the apostles, you'd get the idea that they didn't realize that they already had the faith they needed. Jesus responded:

Luke 17: 6 He replied, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it will obey you.



What was their problem, then? They weren't exercising their faith. That's what this verse in Ephesians is saying to us. Take up the shield of faith means take it up and use it! Exercise it!

Ephesians 6:16 (NIV) In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

Ephesians 6:16 (NKJV) above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.



Again, the NKJV makes it sound as though the shield of faith is more important than what was said previously, but the NIV is actually a better translation. With that shield of faith intact, true faith, it doesn't matter what gets thrown at you. You will still trust God's promises. You will still trust His goodness. You will know that He cares for you and has not forgotten you, even if it's been a very long time since you "felt" Him near you. Satan will use your feelings against you. It's actually part of his arsenal against you.

The breastplate of righteousness should always stay put, firmly in place. The shield of faith is even more active. You can apply it in whatever way the situation calls for.



Ephesians 6:17 (NIV) Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Ephesians 6:17 (NKJV) And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;

Take the helmet of salvation - Your helmet is an essential part of your equipment if you are a warrior. There have been other parts of the armor that also relate to salvation, but this one says it specifically. Now, you can possess a helmet without wearing it. Does that apply here? Can you possess salvation without using it? I believe you can be perfectly saved - going to heaven - but, if you are still in infancy, you are basically useless. A baby is alive, no doubt about it, but she needs everything done for her. The word "take" is aorist, imperative and "middle deponent." I have no idea what "middle deponent" means other than what the Blueletterbible says about it: "The middle deponent forms in almost all cases are translated as being in the active voice." In any case, it is a command and implies some action on our part. That is not to say that we "take salvation" but that we make use of the salvation we have.

There is absolutely nothing that Satan can do to you that can truly hurt you. Even your death is simply the gateway to heaven.

Some points of interest in this article: Salvation Doctrines

 

And the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God - The sword here isn't just any sword, but the machaira, which was a short sword with two sharp edges. It's the same word as here:

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword , it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.



In the days before Rome, most swords were long swords. Many of them had only one sharp edge. The long swords gave a long reach, which helped keep the warrior out of harm's way. However, they were heavy, and required two hands. You couldn't hold a shield in place very easily, if at all. They were brutal weapons, and required more strength than skill. They were used to hack off heads and limbs.

The Roman army came on the scene with a short sword, meant for close quarters. Its use required a great deal of practice. It was sharp on both sides and had a sharp point. Instead of whacking from the side, the Roman soldier used an aimed, thrusting technique. They were able to stab with one hand, leaving the other free to hold a shield. While the long swords did a lot of damage, they were rarely able to kill. The short sword, with an aimed thrust through body armor, was a much more lethal weapon. With it, the Romans conquered the known world.

So, what does all this mean about the Word of God? The machaira required practice. The Roman soldier prepared constantly. What he had done last week wasn't useful to him this week. It meant life or death to him to use his weapon with skill. That's how it must be with us and God's Word. If we are to be effective in speaking to others, and in discerning between truth and deception, we must be familiar with God's Word. We need to know what God says about things. We can learn from what others have to say, certainly, but we also need to be in God's Word itself. Otherwise, it would be like practicing our swordplay out of a book. It doesn't work. Ideally, the Bible should be as familiar to you as the machaira was to the Roman soldier.

From Chuck Missler's Ephesian's study:



So, how do you get to the point of being as familiar with the Word of God as the Roman soldier was with his sword? The same way the soldier did, one day at a time. In the Old Testament, God said to think about it, study it, talk about it, all the time:

Deuteronomy 6:6 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children . Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.



Paul says this:

2 Timothy 2:15 (NIV) Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV) Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.



The word translated "do your best" in the NIV or "study" in the KJV is spoudazo (spoo-dad'-zo). It means to endeavour, labor, or study. There is an element of haste to it, like "get to it," or "really exert yourself." There are those who make a big deal out of the "rightly dividing the word of truth," but for our purposes here, the NIV's correctly handles the word of truth is a good understanding.

In other words, this whole "sword of the Spirit" idea is not effortless. It requires work, practice, diligence. This is not a Sunday morning, "listening to the lesson for the week" kind of thing. This is an every day, "get in there and work at it" thing. It requires as much practice and work as being good at basketball or the clarinet or whatever.



The Armor of God

The machaira was designed for close quarters, and that's how God's Word works well, too. Sure, you can speak it to the masses, but sharing one on one with a friend or studying together with your family is often more effective because it's on a personal level.

God's Word is also effective for resisting the devil. How did Jesus turn aside the temptations of Satan? With the Word of God!



Ephesians 6:18 (NIV) And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

Ephesians 6:18 (NKJV) praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints -

 Prayer gives us the long reach, much further than the spear of the Roman soldier. Through prayer, we can intercede for those suffering persecution all over the world. Through prayer, we can ask God to reach the heart of the Muslims. With prayer, you can reach the throne of God, anytime, from anywhere, about anything.

It's the seventh part of the "whole armor of God." Each part is essential and all seven enable you after you have done everything, to stand.



Here are some articles on the Armor of God:

The Armor of God

The Full Armor of God -

A Wardrobe from the King

 

The use of "stand firm" in the NIV.

The use of "be strong" in the NIV

 

1 Thessalonians 5:1 Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, 2 for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3 While people are saying, "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.

4 But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. 5 You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. 6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. 8 But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. 9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. 10 He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. 11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.



This salvation is our final, eternal salvation. Remember, there are three ways the word "saved" is used. There is the salvation of our souls, also called justification. Moving from death to life, from hell to heaven - fully forgiven through faith in the gospel. There is the salvation of our lives, also called sanctification, where we are gradually made more like our savior through the work of the Holy Spirit as we grow up in the faith. Finally, there is the salvation of our bodies in resurrection, when Jesus comes for us. At that time, there will be no more sickness, no more sorrow, no more sin. We will always be with Jesus.

The "hope of salvation" is the joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation. It's not "hope" like we use the word: I hope it doesn't rain tomorrow. Biblical hope is a sure thing.

 

Some final thoughts from Jon Courson on the introduction to putting on the armor of God (Courson, J. 2003. Jon Courson's Application Commentary . Thomas Nelson: Nashville, TN):




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Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. - Acts 17:11



© 2012 This study was written by Jacqui Komschlies and last updated 2/1/2012. If you have questions, comments, corrections or concerns, please write me.

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