Reading: Colossians 3:1-17
God’s Armour (Ephesians 6:10-20)
The reason for God providing spiritual armour is that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil (Eph 6:11).
Our perception of strength is not as important as knowing the source of our strength. Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might (Eph 6:10).
Truth is the applied absolutes of God which is discovered through Jesus Christ in the Bible. The Holy Spirit uses these truths to convict and grow us.
As part of the Roman armour the belt had an extension which Paul doesn’t mention. This extension was a large leather strap that diagonally joined the front of the belt over the shoulder and connected to the belt again on the back.
This strap was critical as it connected and located the attached items of armour (Belt, breastplate, and sword scabbard).
The strap was, in reality, part of the belt. It is NOT for looks only.
So it is in the believer’s life, the belt of truth is not an isolated item, but connects to other items. God’s truth makes the correct strong connections in our lives when it is believed, actioned, and shared with others.
The breastplate of righteousness
having put on the breastplate of righteousness (Eph 6:14b).
Roman soldiers would never go to battle without a breastplate. It was a tough, sleeveless piece of armour that covered his full upper body. It was often made of leather or heavy cloth, onto which were attached overlapping slices of animal hooves or horns or pieces of metal. Some were made of metal moulded to the shape of body. The purpose was simply to protect the critical internal organs.
Righteousness, which is applied truth, is to be intentionally wrapped around our whole lives. This righteousness is NOT self-righteousness, and it’s NOT Christ’s imputed righteousness. Rather, it is differing expressions of righteousness that come about as the result of God’s truth in the believer’s new life.
John MacArthur: The breastplate of righteousness that we put on as spiritual armour against our adversary is the practical righteousness of a life lived in obedience to God’s Word.
The believer is responsible for putting this righteousness on throughout their living.
We need to remind ourselves of the connection the breastplate has with the belt.
This breastplate is to protect from the enemy and should not be allowed to harden our attitudes towards others.
The breastplate of righteousness as not a weapon and should not be thought or for self-confidence.
It only protects. It is the product of Christ’s imputed righteousness and Holy Spirit sanctification.
A false application sounds like this; “it doesn’t matter how you think, talk, or act, because all our sins – past, present, and future – are covered by Christ’s blood.” This is presumptuous and makes you vulnerable to the enemy. The connection with TRUTH is missing.
Romans 14:16-19 So do not let what you regard as good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 Whoever thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men. 19 So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.
The breastplate of righteousness protects us from being ravaged and victimised by sin and Satan.
With Col 3:1-17 in your minds – Questions:
How can we track our righteousness’s without becoming self-righteous or legalistic?
List realistic acts of righteousness which Paul could have had in mind?
How can we encourage others to put on the breastplate of righteousness?