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Ephesians 6:16

Ephesians 6:16

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I. Bible Passage

In all of this, by taking up the shield, namely the faith, with which you will be able to extinguish/quench/dowse all the flaming arrows of the evil one (Ephesians 6:16)

II. The three armors (i.e. the truth, righteousness, and peace) we saw till now are to be worn day-in and day-out. This particular armor (i.e. the shield, namely the faith) is to be kept ready so that one can use it when it is needed

III. Satan, the Evil One, is trying constantly to inflict hurts in a believer’s life (16b)

1. Satan’s weapon is like the “flaming arrows” used in war (metaphor)

(a) Flaming arrows were used by Persians to burn doors and bridges when they invaded Greece
(b) Later Greeks used such weapons in their warfare
(c) Flaming arrows causes significant amount of collateral damage
(d) Flaming arrow not only inflicts wounds, but they burn the object
(e) Flaming arrows can shake one’s resolve and courage

2. Satan wants to inflict maximum damage in the lives of believers (despite believers’ wearing the armors like the truth, righteousness, and peace)

IV. When believers come under Satan’s incendiary attack, they are startled (the opposite of “stand”)

1. Like Adam and Eve, the attack is on the believers’ trust in God’s word
2. Like Aachen, the attack is God’s mission for His people
3. Like David, the attack is on God’s provisions for the believers
4. Like Ananias and Saphira, the attack is on God’s plan for finance
5. Satan attacks on believers’ emotions, legitimate passions, relationship, persecution, temptation, etc.,

V. Believers must take the shield, namely the faith that extinguishes the flaming fire (16a)

1. The shield Paul has in mind is scutum which is a large rectangular or semi-cylindrical shield. It is different from the regular shield. These shields are soaked in water to extinguish the fire

2. For a Christian, the scutum is “the faith”

3. The faith is one’s activing on the truth. Believers’ laying hold of God’s resources is “the faith” (Peter O’Brian)

4. What God has revealed about Himself and the believers is the truth; when believer’s act on it is the faith

(a) God has adopted you and He never retracts from this relationship with you
(b) God has destined you to be “holy and blameless” which is based on Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection
(c) God has redeemed you by the substitutionary death of His Son, Jesus Christ
(d) God has given you the Holy Spirit to be by your side and an inheritance in the heavenlies
(e) God has appointed Jesus to be the Lord over everything
(f) God has made you to be His “masterpiece”—you are special
(g) God has won the battle and you are on His side

5. The faith is a content that alters a person’s behavior when he believers it

6. The faith gives access to God

(a) God is equated to the shield (Genesis 15:1; Prov. 30:5)
(b) Here, the acting on the Truth functions as the shield (cf. 1 Peter 5:9; 1 John 5:4)
(c) Paul talks about this faith elsewhere (1:13, 15, 19; 2:8; 3:12, 17; 4:5, 13; 6:23)

7. It is God who extinguishes Satan’s incendiary attacks

8. When believers plug in to the power of God through the medium of the faith (objective faith), the flaming arrows of the Enemy are extinguished

VI. Take Away

Act on the truth God has revealed in the Scripture, which is the faith

Speaker: William J. Subash

Born and raised in south India, William J. Subash became a follower of Jesus Christ in 1983 at the age of nineteen. After a brief career in a tea and coffee plantation, Subash decided to spend rest of his life to preach about Jesus and his life-transforming message of God, which is popularly known as “the Gospel.” Subash teaches New Testament Studies at two institutions: SAIACS in India and Liberty University Online, VA, USA. Currently, Subash serves as the chief point person for GROW Gospel Initiatives and the Lead Pastor of the Crossroad Church, Bangalore. Write to him at wjsubash@crossroadbangalore.org