“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,” –Ephesians 6:14 (NIV)
Have you ever worn a suit of armour? It is certainly not something that everyone can wear and be comfortable in. Most mediaeval examples of amour were made of metal and were designed in different styles depending on the needs of the battlefield. But while a metallic suit of armour offered ample protection against the attacks of an assailant, it required a certain level strength to actually bear its weight and fight effectively. Place someone in a suit of armour not tailored to his strength and frame and one will see him moving ponderously around and stumbling about under the weight he must carry. To wear a suit of armour one needs not merely natural strength, but a strength which is built up and constantly maintained through intense training.
As children of Christ we are called to stand for righteousness and truth. But too often this mantle which we are called to bear is beyond our strength. The armour is too heavy for us to carry by ourselves and we stumble in it. The reason for our struggle is that we are relying on our own strength. If we try to stand for truth and live up to God’s righteous standards on our own efforts, we are prone to fall short for we are weak and all too prone to submit ourselves to sin and defeat. We can only wear the armour of God when we have a strength that comes from not within ourselves, but from Christ Himself. When we have allowed Him to enter our hearts He will empower us by His Spirit to live lives of purity and integrity. Walking in step in His Spirit we will find that when we have put on the belt of truth and wear the breastplate of righteousness, it will not be heavy for Christ is the one who gives us the strength to boldly proclaim His truth and be, as He says in Matthew 5:13-16, “…the salt of the earth…the light of the world.”
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.