Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God. . . .
— Ephesians 6:10-11
When my wife’s colleague Petro was conscripted into the Ukrainian military service, his family and friends began collecting money for a special project. They decided to buy him the best body armor system they could afford. In addition to prayers, that was their way of showing that they cared and wanted Petro to return home alive from deadly combat.
The Bible contains many military-related words and descriptions. It explains that the Christian life involves spiritual warfare and that we must take our stand “against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
In Ephesians 6 the apostle Paul uses battle armor as a metaphor to show that we can be equipped by God to be victorious and protected against evil. But our armor and weapons are very different from what the world would expect. The armor of God includes truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and the salvation found in God’s Word.
The apostle calls us to be brave and to rely fully on God in battle—and our victory is assured. All we have to do is hold to the love of God in Jesus Christ, who invites us to be part of a victory that he has already won.
Lord and Father, you know our struggles and the battles we fight. Strengthen our faith in the gospel of peace, and give us courage to fight the good fight. In your Son’s name we pray. Amen.