Ephesians 6:11; Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
How can something you wear help you stand against an evil spirit? I’m not up on battle fashion but I think even the Marines would miss out designing this outfit. Paul was speaking to his audience the Ephesians. He knew they would relate this spiritual concept with the industry of the of Ephesus which was armor making. He knew they were familiar with armour and all the terminology surrounding it. They built armor that would protect against the long-range arrows, but also was flexible enough to wrestle in once the battle became hand to hand combat.
Verse 12 it goes on to say “we wrestle not…” Wrestle? How can you wrestle in full armor? The Ephesians knew Paul was referring to the kind of armor they were known for. Close range, hand to hand combat armor. After all the Olympics started in Greece and most of those men fought or raced completely nude. Ephesus was a busy port in Greece. What does this have to do with spiritual warfare? The analogy shows us that we will need to wrestle in one-on-one combat against the wiles of the devil. I’d like to look at the three parts of this verse. My goal is to bring a greater understanding to this fight we’re in. Lucky for us it’s defined beautiful right in the context of the verse.
- Put on the whole armor – God is asking us to put on or wear something. In Greek it’s the word endyō. It occurs 32 times in 26 verses in the NT. 12 times it refers to a spiritual clothing or attitude. ie. Ephesians 4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. The whole armor is the Gr. word panoplia it is only found 3 times in the NT two are in this section of Ephesians. Telling us that this armour is unique because the English word armour is used over 20 times throughout the Bible but only this Greek word three times. It shows us this is a specific usage meaning a specific kind of armour made to wrestle in, not just fight with. (If you think this is cool–wait till we get to the next sections!)
- That ye may be able to stand against – “That (the purpose being) Ye”. Ye is a plural form of you, it’s like saying you all. “May be able to” – this phrase is the Greek word dynamai meaning, to be capable, strong and powerful. Do you see the likeness to the English word dynamite? That isn’t an accident. This Greek word is brimming with power, but like dynamite it is potential power. It has to be lit first. “Stand against” – Greek = histēmi meaning to establish or be of a ready mind, to stand firm. There are many tactics in battle but one major on is the stand. A stand on something is a boundary it says, “No you can’t come here this is off-limits to you. This is the believer’s renewed mind. We establish our thoughts on the Word thereby taking a stand against…what?
- The wiles of the Devil – Wiles = Gr. wd. methodeia. This is the methods of trickery and deceit he has planned. This is the world’s influence through the error and schematics of deception. “of the” “Devil,” Gr. wd.= diabolos. This phrase indicates the adversary’s indirect effect on the world. Wiles of the devil is the preying on man via old-man nature; it takes a renewed mind to stand against the wiles of the effects of this.
Put It On
This wonderful verse is talking about the power we have in our established thought patterns. The very definition of the renewed mind is “to put the Word of God in mind, and act accordingly.” It relates to our one-on-one battle in our personal and private thought life. Anyone who has tried to quit and addiction, or lose weight, or quit smoking knows the struggle this can be. It’s a moment by moment fight and sometimes it’s not pretty. The mind is where the victory happens though. The root of all decisions, motivation, and actions starts with a single thought. (For more on how the process of thoughts happen click here)
Romans 12:2; And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
God Bless You! Have a great day living victorious in your mind!