A bible study series in Ephesians (Part 8)
- Summary: This final lesson in our Ephesians series identifies the full armor of God and emphasizes prayer as a spiritual weapon.
[Read Ephesians 6:10-18]
6:10 Finally, be strong in the LORD and in His mighty power.
- •• Never lose sight of the Source of our strength — that is, the Lord and His mighty power.
- • 2 Corinthians 12:9, KJV “...My strength is made perfect in [your] weakness.”
• John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches ... Apart from me you can do nothing.”
6:11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.
- •• 2 Corinthians 10:4 “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”
- • God’s armor, which He makes available to us, has “divine power”. Take on God’s “full armor”; you need it all!
- •• Note the emphasis on the word “stand”:
- •  “Stand against the devil’s schemes.”
•  “Stand your ground.”
•  “...after you have done everything, to stand”
•  “Stand firm then.”
• The enemy we stand against is the devil and his demons (see verses 12ff).
6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
- •• Amplified Bible: “For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood — contending only with physical opponents — but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.”
•• It is easy (and dangerous) for us to misidentify the enemy. We may think that the enemy is an ornery neighbor, a spiteful coworker, or even the “other” political party! But the apostle tells us that the true enemy is not “flesh and blood”. That is, people are not our enemy. They are redeemable by the blood of Jesus Christ. Satan and his demons are not redeemable, and they are the enemy with whom we have our main “struggle”.
6:13-18 This portion lists the armament and weaponry that God provides us in this ongoing battle against our spiritual enemy, the devil.
- ••  the belt of truth buckled around your waist
- • The truth of the Gospel, or perhaps truth in the sense of integrity and truthfulness
- ••  the breastplate of righteousness
- • God’s imputed righteousness and/or a personal life of righteous living
- ••  your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace
- • The Gospel in your life puts a good foundation under you.
• Another “readiness” is 1 Peter 3:15 — “...be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you...” And that hope, of course, is grounded in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
- ••  the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one
- • Interestingly (says Tyndale), Roman soldiers had a system of locking their large shields together for corporate defense as well as for attack.
- ••  the helmet of salvation. God’s “great salvation” is full of benefits to enable the believer to overcome the world, the flesh, and the devil.
••  the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God
- • Interestingly, this is the only offensive weapon listed.
• Remember Jesus’ use of Scripture to defeat the devil. Three times He opposed Satan’s temptations with “It is written...” (Matthew 4:1-11).
- ••  And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
- • A fruitful personal prayer life is a powerful weapon against the devil’s schemes and strategies. In my opinion, one of the most powerful weapons in our spiritual warfare arsenal is the very Lord’s Prayer itself (Matthew 6:9-13), especially this portion: “Our Father in heaven ... deliver us from the evil one...” Pray to your heavenly Father daily for Him to deliver you from the “evil one”.
6:19-20 Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel,  for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.
- •• Paul solicits prayer for himself, that he might declare the Gospel boldly. Take a moment right now, and pray for your pastor(s) and other church leaders, that they may be effective vessels in bringing Jesus Christ to your community.
- • On a personal note, I would sincerely appreciate your prayers for me, that this website will be able to reach many souls hungry for the Word of God.
6:21-22 Tychicus, the dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord, will tell you everything, so that you also may know how I am and what I am doing.  I am sending him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage you.
- •• His messenger Tychicus will deliver the epistle and fill the Ephesian Christians in on details of Paul’s current status.
•• Imagine the holy privilege Tychicus had of carrying with him a letter destined to become a part of sacred Scripture and one of the Bible’s most cherished epistles. And yet you and I have that privilege every day, don’t we? That is, the blessed honor of being able to share the very words of God with our families, friends, and neighbors.
6:23-24 Peace to the brothers, and love with faith from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.
- •• Paul includes in his heartfelt closing a few of the key issues of the Christian faith — peace ... love ... faith ... grace ... loving Jesus.
•• In his final sentence Paul reminds of us of “the first and greatest commandment ... [to] love the Lord your God with all your heart...” (Matthew 22:37-38). And here he directs that love towards the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, our Savior — the Lord Jesus Christ.
The first lesson in this eight-part series is Highlights from Ephesians #1.
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©2001, James H. Feeney.
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by Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.