A Shield of Faith (Ephesians 6:16)
No first-century soldier in his right mind would have headed out for battle without his shield. Without that all-important piece of equipment, he would be easy prey for his well-armed counterpart, who was probably carrying spears, swords, and other projectile weapons.
The apostle Peter also warned people to be on the alert for the devil, but he used a different metaphor: “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). While the wording was different, the idea was the same: Be alert and ready!
Likewise, no Christian would dare head out and attempt to do spiritual war without taking along the shield of faith. That is why Paul wrote, “In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil” (Ephesians 6:16).
Paul knew that while the devil was defeated by what Jesus did on the cross, he wasn';t about to lie down and acknowledge his defeat without trying to take down as many people with him as possible. He is an angry adversary who still had some fight left in him, even if the outcome of the battle was settled.
The devil has an array of weapons he likes to use against believers: fear, doubt, lust, anxiety … the list goes on and on. But Paul says that God has given us a means to repel the devil';s use of those weapons: faith. Having faith — meaning taking God at his word and believing He keeps His promises, and knowing that God Himself is bigger and more powerful than anything the devil can throw at us — renders the devil';s weapons of offense against the believer absolutely worthless.
What specific spiritual weapons has the devil been trying to use against you?
In what areas of your spiritual life is God challenging you to have more faith today?