East Side Church
(Baptist - Disciples of Christ)
201 Spruce Ave.
Sharon, PA 16146
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August 5, 2012
"Fighting Life's Battles"
Read Ephesians 6:10-17.

Life is a battle! To be victorious in life's battles, we must do three things. First, we must KNOW THE ENEMY (6:11-12). In addition to the common calamities of life, we struggle with the powers of darkness and evil including the devil's schemes. Ephesians 2:1-3 describes these powers as the ways of this world, the ruler of this world (the Devil) and gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature. These are the things we did before we were saved by Christ. They keep us from doing God's will and being victorious in life's battles. Beware of these competing worldviews: 1) Nihilism = "there is no meaning to life"; 2) Hedonism = "If it feels good, do it"; 3) Humanism = "man is the measure of all things"; 4) Buddhism and New Age = "two competing sides, good and evil, one is not better than the other, they just are." "There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death" (Proverbs 14:12; 16:25). Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life" (John 14:6).

Second, we must BE STRONG IN THE LORD (6:10). As Christian soldiers, we are commanded to apply ourselves to our work and duty. But we are not sufficient on our own. Our sufficiency is from God. We fight the battles of life in His strength. "Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of hosts (armies)" (Zechariah 4:6). An example is David's fight against Goliath: "…but I come against you in the name of the LORD almighty…for the battle is the Lord's" (I Samuel 17:45-47).

Third, we must BE WELL ARMED. 1) "Put on the full armor of God" (6:11, 13). This armor is prepared for us by God, but we must put it on. 2) The pieces of armor are: a) the belt of truth (6:14). The Biblical worldview is "Christ is the measure of all things." The truth of God's Word (God's revelation of Himself in Christ) is the belt on which all the other weapons are hung. If you are on the wrong path, you will never get to the truth. b) The breastplate of righteousness (6:14). We are saved by grace through faith but once we are saved, our conduct must reflect the Lordship of Jesus. "Watch over your heart with all diligence, for out of it flows the springs of life (spiritual vitality)(Proverbs 4:23). The heart is the seat of the will where we make decisions. "As a man thinks in his heart, so is he." c) Our feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace (6:15) means that our feet are firmly rooted in God's Word. d) The shield of faith (6:16) is used to extinguish all the flaming arrows of Satan. Like the Roman army, when we stand firmly with the fellowship of believers to encourage and support one another in our faith, we will be victorious. e) Take the helmet of salvation (6:17) so that we have hope and confidence knowing that our salvation is secure. One of Satan's weapons is doubt which leads to confusion. f) Take the sword of the Spirit (6:17) which is the Word of God (the Bible) which is an offensive weapon. g) "Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests" (6:18).

Fourth, we must DO ALL GOD COMMANDS (6:13). "Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and having done everything, to stand" (6:13). God gives us all the armor we need to fight life's battles. Don't short-change yourself by accepting cheap substitutes.

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© East Side Church, 2013