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The Sword of the Spirit
Eph. 6:17 Receive the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God . . ..
Rev. 19:11-16 And now I saw heaven open, and a white horse appear; its rider was called Trustworthy and true; in uprightness he judges and makes war. His eyes were flames of fire, and he was crowned with many coronets; the name written on him was known only to himself, his cloak was soaked in blood. He is known by the name The Word of God. Behind him dressed in linen of dazzling white, rode the armies of heaven on white horses. From his mouth came a sharp sword with which to strike the unbelievers; he is the one who will rule them with an iron scepter, and tread out the wine of almighty God’s fierce retribution. On his cloak and on his thigh a name was written, KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
This is our last piece of spiritual armor, “The Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.” When you undertake the history of the sword, one acquires the history of mankind. Mankind created many innovations; several led to the deadliest of all of man’s creations, the sword. These innovations have shaped our society today, just as markedly as the sword shaped the maps of the world. By having a better understanding of how a sword was fashioned and used, we may gain certain insights into how we may call upon and rely upon our spiritual sword. Having a better understanding of the characteristics of a sword, we may better understand how these characteristics in us apply to our spiritual weapon. While it was mentioned in the preceding chapter how a properly instructed Warrior can use their faith as a weapon, it is our Sword that is constructed specifically as a weapon. Being it is our sole offensive arm, having a sound understanding of how to use it is essential for a Warrior who looks to engage the enemy and serve well in the ranks of the Lord.
A brief glimpse at the historical development of swords follows including some references to the destructive nature of the weapon. These facts are compared to what the Scriptures reveal of the nature and composition of the word of God, and how powerful it has shown itself to be. The reference to 'live steel' is compared to the 'Living Word of God.' It will come as a great surprise to many readers to learn that more than one of the Apostles carried a sword. . .
Spiritually, it is fitting that the Word of God is symbolically related to us as a sword. A quality of a sword is that it has the ability to cut through all meat clean to the bone. This is another way of saying the Word is incisive enough to cut away all the fat and chaff of a situation, position or matter to reveal the underlying structure, the bones, or true heart of the matter. Just as a sword, the Word has the ability to lay bare the essentials, the vitals. As mentioned earlier, a well-tempered sword is often described as having a life of its own. This also is a quality referred to in describing the Word of God. The Word of God is something alive and active; it cuts more incisively than any two-edged sword; it can seek out the place where soul is divided from spirit, or joints from marrow; it can pass judgment on secret emotions and thoughts. Heb. 4:12-13. Now to me, I am sure for you also, something that can pass judgment on our secret emotions and thoughts is incisive.
Five specific weapons are to be found in the arsenal of the well equipped Christian. These are discussed, and references are cited.These are then compared to the weapons we are told the enemy may spiritually apply. . ..
The weapons of the enemy include fear, lies, and all manner of deception. To oppose attacks specifically of these types, we are fortified with the Belt of Truth, the Breastplate of Righteousness, and the Shield of Faith, as has been the subject of the proceeding chapters. When we perfect our spiritual armor, the attacks of the enemy can find no breach in our defense. When the Christian Warrior understands this, there can hardly be enough opposition to stop but one steadfast and loyal Warrior following the direction of the Almighty. The enemy in this war has no weapon of power, or armor for protection. This coupled with the understanding of God’s might and power of protection through our spiritual armor allows us to take the best shot of the enemy and yet, . . . To STAND! Eph. 6:10-13.
As well as being used in acts of aggression or defense, the sword is shown to be used in other capacities as well, and these historical uses are compared to the Word of God. . ..
1 Kng. 3:24-25 24And the king said, ‘Bring me a sword.’ And they brought a sword before the king. 25And the king said, ‘Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one, and half to the other.’
A severe admonition is presented to those whom desire to use the power of the Word for their own edification.
Just as sword fighting may be referred to as 'sword play,' specific cites from the scriptures are used to show how the Word of God may be used to 'spar' with the unfaithful.
This leads us to the last topic with which we shall close this chapter: the characteristics that support, enhance, and develop our Sword of the Spirit. As has been shown with each prior piece of our armor, many of the attributes of a Warrior’s character will assist in the development of our use of the Sword of the Spirit. As many of these character attributes have been noted in the various scriptures used throughout this chapter, pause and consider what personal characteristics you believe will be beneficial in this regard. It may come as no surprise to find included among them: devotion/honor, nobility, mercy, discernment/wisdom, justice, strength, courage/fearlessness, and willingness-and-doing. . .
The scriptures show each of these points borne out. . ..
When we have exemplified the full nature and character of the Warrior in ourselves, we then become totally ensconced in the protection or our Armor of God. Being true to the Word in word and deed, we so royally accoutered that the stars and angels themselves do witness the goodness of the Lord, the divine Creator. Never stopping in the pursuit of the enemy, never fearing the hidden danger, always bearing love, forgiveness, forbearance, mercy, and goodness in our heart as our divine example instructs. Who could help but revere our Lord, our King, who so nobly prepares His Warriors!
All the armor is now made ready. Be not limited by your understanding, but hold secure to the assurances and promises of the King, the Almighty Creator of all. As a Warrior in the Army of God, avail yourself of all these blessings as the hand of man has never forged armor such as this, but by the hand of God Himself, each piece crafted for your individual, personal edification and protection. Strap each piece about yourself and be ready at a moment’s notice for the approach of the enemy as well as the approach of our King (Jdg. 16:20, 2 Ptr. 3:10). Be not found sleeping, unprepared and unwitting as the five virgins were (Matt. 25:1-13), suffer not the punishment of the sleeping or unwary guard (Ezk. 33:1-9). Rather, be strong in the Lord always (Eph. 6:10), and goodness and mercy shall by yours all the days of your life (Ps. 23:6).
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