• The Sword of the Spirit

    The Sword of the Spirit


    Ephesians 6:17

    17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,1


    The final piece of the believer’s armor is the Sword of the Spirit! Paul tells us very clearly what is meant by this sword. The Sword of the Spirit is none other than the Word of God! 


    Paul wasn’t referring to the long sword usually carried by the Roman soldier into battle. He was referring to a short sword that the soldier kept attached to his side at all times. This sword was both a defensive and an offensive weapon. It was a double-edged blade used in all sorts of conflicts. It is much like the way the writer to the Hebrews declared the Bible being "living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword." 


    When we wield the Word of God rightly, we can resist or defend against the evil one much as our Lord did during His wilderness temptations (James 4:7Matthew 4:1-11). 


    Offensively, we can use it to expose the lies of Satan when we train regularly in how to wield the Sword of Truth! When we know the truth of God’s Word, and believe it by the power of the Holy Spirit, we can stand firm upon the truth of God in all circumstances. 


    Why are we so easily defeated? In our day, we have an information overload. We digest a lot of Bible knowledge! The problem we face is that we don’t marinate on the Word. Our knowledge has far surpassed our obedience. 


    If we are going to stand firm in the evil day, then we have to begin taking the Word of God as the Word of God again. We like to wield a Word of God in a way that suits our own cultural and moral desires rather than obey what it says so plainly. Christian run in such a way that your obedience catches up to your knowledge, then you will stand firm as you wield the Sword of the Spirit! Meditate upon this!



    Today's Devotional was contributed by Pastor Wayne Sullivan.


    (If you are associated with Ephesus Baptist Church and would like to contribute a devotional to our blog, then send us a devotional of 350 words or less to pastor.ephesusnc@gmail.com)


    Read more of our devotions and other articles at our Pastor's Blog!


    If you would like to be added to our informational email list, contact us at office.ephesusnc@gmail.com.



    Please let us know what you think about today's devotion, or how it has helped you grow spiritually by leaving us a comment on our Facebook page below this devotion. We look forward to hearing from you soon!


    Please consider helping Ephesus Baptist Church advance the Gospel and the Kingdom of Christ by donating to the mission at ebcspringhope.com/give.




    The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Eph. 6:17.  

    1. Put Your Helmet On!

      Put Your Helmet On!



      Ephesians 6:17

      17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,1


      Growing up as a kid in the 80’s, we never wore helmets. I rode my bike, played football, and did other activities without ever thinking about safety! We were oblivious to the danger of playing and living in a fallen world. 


      Hundreds of years earlier, the Roman soldiers knew something that we didn’t even think about. They knew the need for helmet. They wore leather and metal helmets to protect their melons from the blow of a sword or club. The helmet was essential to their survival. Paul gives us another piece of spiritual armor that is just as essential to our survival: The Helmet of Salvation. 


      The Helmet of Salvation protects the mind of the Christian in a way similar to the Roman soldier’s helmet protecting his head from trauma. When we wage war against the enemy, we have to maintain a confident assurance, an expectant hope that God will ultimately prevail on our behalf. 


      Satan desires to have our minds. He wants to cause us to doubt and give up. He wants negativity and passivity to reign supreme in the mind of the believer. The only way we can defend against that is to guard our minds through the hope of salvation. 


      In another place, Paul actually connects the Helmet of Salvation with the Hope of Salvation. In 1 Thessalonians 5:8-9 we read, 


      1 Thessalonians 5:8–9

      8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2


      Today dear believer, realize that the Helmet of Salvation speaks to us about trusting in God, confidently expecting that He will keep His promises to us. Remaining steadfast in the belief that He will overcome evil and save His children through the finished work of Christ on the cross of Calvary. Read Romans 5:1-5 and meditate upon this hope today as you put on your Helmet of Salvation! 



      Today's Devotional was contributed by Pastor Wayne Sullivan.


      (If you are associated with Ephesus Baptist Church and would like to contribute a devotional to our blog, then send us a devotional of 350 words or less to pastor.ephesusnc@gmail.com)


      Read more of our devotions and other articles at our Pastor's Blog!


      If you would like to be added to our informational email list, contact us at office.ephesusnc@gmail.com.



      Please let us know what you think about today's devotion, or how it has helped you grow spiritually by leaving us a comment on our Facebook page below this devotion. We look forward to hearing from you soon!


      Please consider helping Ephesus Baptist Church advance the Gospel and the Kingdom of Christ by donating to the mission at ebcspringhope.com/give.



      The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Eph. 6:17

      The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), 1 Thess. 5:8-9.  

      1. Shield of Faith!

        Shield of Faith! 


        Ephesians 6:16

        16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;1


        When we consider our Christian faith in regard to our daily battle against our sinful flesh, the world, and Satan: the Unholy Trinity of evil; we have to ask the question, “How important is our faith?”


        Paul, our seasoned drill sergeant in spiritual warfare training, has to get our attention here. He does not say that we need to occasionally take up our shield of faith. He says we take it up in all circumstances. The NKJV says that “above all,” we should take up the shield of faith!


        We have to be prepared to be on our defensive at all times and above all senses of peacefulness. At any moment, the evil one may begin to launch his flaming darts or arrows of soul destruction in our direction. 


        Therefore, we have to realize that our shield of faith is there to defend us in peaceful times, in times when the battle is intense, when the moment calls us to resist and to endure against evil.  


        What makes the shield so strong against the enemy? The object of our faith is infinitely more powerful and mighty than our enemy. God almighty, sovereign and true, will uphold those who turn to Him in faith and will not allow our temptation to go beyond our ability, but He will enable us to endure it (1 Cor. 10:13). 


        Jesus Christ is faithful and true! When we take up daily our shield of faith, we are in essence saying,


        “Lord, please go before me, beside me, and behind me today! Be my shield to help me endure to your glory. Extinguish all the fiery darts of the enemy on my behalf out of your abundant grace and mercy. Where my sin abounds, may your grace abound even more!” 


        Why not meditate upon this today and pray this prayer as you take up your shield of faith daily! 



        Today's Devotional was contributed by Pastor Wayne Sullivan.


        (If you are associated with Ephesus Baptist Church and would like to contribute a devotional to our blog, then send us a devotional of 350 words or less to pastor.ephesusnc@gmail.com)


        Read more of our devotions and other articles at our Pastor's Blog!


        If you would like to be added to our informational email list, contact us at office.ephesusnc@gmail.com.



        Please let us know what you think about today's devotion, or how it has helped you grow spiritually by leaving us a comment on our Facebook page below this devotion. We look forward to hearing from you soon!


        Please consider helping Ephesus Baptist Church advance the Gospel and the Kingdom of Christ by donating to the mission at ebcspringhope.com/give.




        1The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Eph. 6:16

        1. Shoes of Readiness!

           Shoes of Readiness! 


          Ephesians 6:14–15

          14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.1 


          Putting on the armor of God refers to both defensive and offensive uses for the believer. After you have put on the belt of truth and the breastplate of righteousness for defensive reasons, the next piece of armor that God commands Paul to teach us about serves both measures. 


          The Roman soldier wore hobnailed or studded shoes which helped them in many ways to stand strong or to stand firm in the day of evil or the day of battle. 


          Defensively, these shoes allowed the soldier to dig in and hold their ground when they were in mortal combat with the enemy. The shoes provided them with a sure footing in the midst of battle. This obviously provides the believer with a sense of confidence and peace knowing that we can stand firm through any trial. 


          To put on these shoes defensively is comparable to the believer trusting in the promises of God in the Gospel. As Christians, we are in a battle for the inner peace of soul that Christ has already won and given to us. Daily we have to put on these special shoes of peace so we can stand firm. 


          Offensively, these studded shoes helped the soldier to march farther and faster to accomplish their mission. The Word of God is the gospel of God. The gospel of God is the peace of God granted to those who believe. 


          While we battle daily for the peace of God in our own hearts, we also are given by God a desire to share the gospel of peace in the hearts of others. As we share the gospel we win both defensively and offensively and bring great glory to God. 


          Christian, today be sure to arm yourself for the mission! Put on the shoes of readiness of the Gospel of Peace. Share that peace with someone who crosses your path today! 


          John 14:27

          27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.2



          Today's Devotional was contributed by Pastor Wayne Sullivan.


          (If you are associated with Ephesus Baptist Church and would like to contribute a devotional to our blog, then send us a devotional of 350 words or less to pastor.ephesusnc@gmail.com)


          Read more of our devotions and other articles at our Pastor's Blog!


          If you would like to be added to our informational email list, contact us at office.ephesusnc@gmail.com.



          Please let us know what you think about today's devotion, or how it has helped you grow spiritually by leaving us a comment on our Facebook page below this devotion. We look forward to hearing from you soon!


          Please consider helping Ephesus Baptist Church advance the Gospel and the Kingdom of Christ by donating to the mission at ebcspringhope.com/give.



          The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016) Eph. 6:14-15

          The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Jn. 14:27.  

          1. Count Your Blessings

            Count Your Blessings


            Psalm 103:2–5

             2  Bless the Lord, O my soul,

            and forget not all his benefits,

             3  who forgives all your iniquity,

            who heals all your diseases,

             4  who redeems your life from the pit,

            who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,

             5  who satisfies you with good

            so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.1 



            Blessings are gifts bestowed by God, filling us with happiness when we remember that He blesses us because He is God and we are not. Examples of received blessings include: wisdom, protection, health, guidance and grace before a meal. 


            God has provided us with a magnificent blessing of forgiveness, restoration and eternal life through his precious son, Jesus Christ. This is a spiritual inheritance of enormous wealth.


            If we focus on things we don't have, we forget all the many blessings God has bestowed upon us. He commands us to obey him and love our neighbor, promising us that through obedience, we will find countless blessings.


            In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus teaches us that we can receive joy in our lives despite our circumstances.


            Matthew 5:6

                        6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.2


            The well-known hymn, "Count Your Blessings," is a great reminder for us to count our blessings, name them one by one. We must be careful not to take our blessings for granted. Lest we forget to count our blessings in the midst of life's troubles and trials.  


            As we spend our precious quiet time with God this week, let's make an effort to make a list of our blessings. We might be surprised at how much God has really blessed us. Mediate on this.



            Today's Devotional was contributed by: Mrs. Sue Staton

            (A member of Ephesus Baptist Church's Benevolence Team)


            (If you are associated with Ephesus Baptist Church and would like to contribute a devotional to our blog, then send us a devotional of 350 words or less to pastor.ephesusnc@gmail.com)


            Read more of our devotions and other articles at our Pastor's Blog!


            If you would like to be added to our email list, contact us at office.ephesusnc@gmail.com.



            Please let us know what you think about today's devotion, or how it has helped you grow spiritually by leaving us a comment on our Facebook page below this devotion. We look forward to hearing from you soon!


            Please consider helping Ephesus Baptist Church advance the Gospel and the Kingdom of Christ by donating to the mission at ebcspringhope.com/give.



            The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Ps. 103:2-5.  

            The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Matt. 5:6

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