God’s Armour Ephesians 6:10-20
Traditional Roman Soldier’s wore a Shoe/Sandal called the “Caligae.”
A pair of Caligae was supplied by the army, but the soldiers had to pay for and fit the metal studs to the soles themselves.
The studs strengthened the leather structure as well as being effective for increased traction and for standing firm on slippery ground. Studs were also considered to be a weapon for stomping on a fallen enemy.
By the late 1st century, the Roman army began using an enclosed boot called the “Calcei,” which offered more protection and warmth than the caligae. Like the Caligae sandal, the Calcei had metal studs embedded into the soles.
Ephesians 6:15 …and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.
Now-a-days, we have uniquely designed footwear for every activity and every underfoot condition, providing protection, traction, and comfort. First century soldiers typically had just 1 pair of shoes which had to comply with all conditions and all requirements, providing protection in all circumstances.
This being the case, a soldier’s footwear was rugged because if his feet go blistered, burnt, or damaged, His entire body would be in jeopardy. If his feet suffered, it would make no difference how good the rest of the armour was, he was in serious trouble. Cut, broken, or blistered feet simply incapacitated a soldier, meaning he would be unable to effectively use his sword or shield.
Similarly, a believer is dependent upon their spiritual footwear in their battle against the schemes of the devil. Without having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace, the believer is certain to stumble, trip, fall, and become maimed in their Christian life. At best, without their shoes, the Christian will be sluggish and hindered in their spiritual walk which will invariably lead to spiritual defeats.
Just as a soldier’ boots helped keep his feet healthy, so they also allowed the soldier to be ready for marching, climbing, or fighting. Likewise, Christ not only requires the same readiness of His people, but He also provides the means.
The Ephesians 6 Context:
Paul is NOT speaking about preaching, teaching, or evangelism, but about fighting spiritual battles (:12).
He is NOT speaking about going, traveling, or missions, but standing firm (:11, 13, 14).
Paul’s subject is not evangelizing the lost but fighting the believer’s enemy, the devil.
The specific piece of armour which Paul is speaking of in verse 15, is the readiness that flows out of, and is birthed in the believer from the “gospel of peace,” it is NOT the gospel itself.
This is the believer’s willingness and readiness (Preparedness) to imitate Christ as a Spirit filled believer who is at peace with God. This readiness for worship, obedience, and service is the product of the peace produced in the believer by gospel truth, which is obedient gospel reality.
Peace is one of the fruits, or products, of the gospel/salvation.
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1). This is NOT self-generated peace towards God, but Holy Spirit generated peace from God as a gift.
Release from the wrath and judgement of God is now the believer’s default position. There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:1-2).
Instead of separation and alienation from God, the believer enjoys closeness to God. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13).
Through the gospel of peace, God moved from being our enemy to being our redeemer defender.
Therefore, the piece of armour Paul is highlighting is “readiness”. Readiness to be and do whatever the gospel produces and requires in our lives.
While readiness may look different in different believers, the heart attitude will be the same. Circumstances, beliefs, locations, associations with ministries, different employments, different friendships, and changing family relationships are just some of the many things God providentially uses to create opportunities for ready and willing believers to respond to.
Paul is explaining that the children of God armour themselves with the ability to withstand the enemy’s attacks by willing readiness to be and do whatever is necessary to remain faithful and steadfast in Christ. This means readiness to either continue in whatever you are in at the time or change whatever requires changing to enable continued steadfastness and obedience to the Lord. Ready believers are agile in their faith.
Satan does NOT want ready believers!
What are some of the different ways we need to be ready?
1 Peter 3:15 …in your hearts honour Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared (ready) to make a defence to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.
Titus 3:1 …to be ready for every good work…
Luke 12:40 You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
What are some of the things which hold us back, or prevent us from “readiness”?
How can we change from unpreparedness to readiness?