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The Helmet of Salvation
Eph. 6:17 . . . Take the Helmet of Salvation . . ..
Isa. 59:16-17 . . . So he made his own arm his mainstay, his own saving justice his support . . . on his head the helmet of salvation.
1 Thess. 5:8 . . . let us put on faith and love for a Breastplate, and the hope of salvation for a helmet.
This chapter brings us to our last piece of armor worn directly on the body: our helmet. The helmet covers a significant area for defense: our head. Unchecked physical attacks to the head can obviously impart severe harm, but in spiritual warfare, we often fall prey to nonphysical attacks. The head is the center for our mind and our thoughts. Spiritual attacks upon our head, or our mind, include attacks upon our way of thinking, rationalizing, or our understanding and beliefs. Often a successful attack of this nature will render a Warrior unable to act, or paralyzed to action by indecision or FEAR. Our mind is the center of our Fear, and an area most susceptible to attack. Remember: Fear is nothing more than False Expectations Appearing Real. The principal defense against fear is a staunch belief in God. 1The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? 2When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fall. 3Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident. Ps. 27:1-3. Attacks, which render false expectation real, come in many guises. Typically, this type of attack is made through false appearances, deception and lies, the only real weapons the enemy is equipped with. Another attack of fear is self-doubt, or falsely believing we know the outcome of our potential actions before we act. Think of it this way, Fear is a four-lettered word. We should act toward fear as we would any foul four-letter word; shun it as foul.
The development of the helmet is studied, and specific traits of the Roman Legionary helmet are considered for their effectiveness and pertinence when compared to the spiritual armor. These specific traits are not generally well known, and the significance they carry for the informed Christian is remarkable. The manner in which fear and doubt may be used by the enemy against us and the danger of the idle mind are examined. . .
Do we typically question things as concerned with our life, when our mind is idle. Can you say you have never questioned your state of salvation? This serves as an example of how readily the enemy is provided with the opportunity to use our idle thoughts or doubts to weaken our defenses. Unless we stand on the bedrock understanding of God’s redemption of us by the sacrifice of His Son, our doubts, and personal concerns provide a regular avenue of weakness or potential attack by the enemy. Any questions or concerns about God making good on His promises should normally be seen as a waste of energy, for who would question God and His Word…Quite simply, any of us would; it is part of human nature. It is part of what we are. It has a lot to do with the simple fact that fundamentally, none of us is worthy of God’s grace, as discussed in the last chapter. It is the measure of His perfect love for us that allows any of us to stand in His presence. For the simple fact that none of us can truly fathom the unfathomable, we are at times beleaguered by random, unsolicited, destructive thoughts. These can and will often be used against us. It takes an act of volition to declare and profess your belief in the saving redemption found in Jesus Christ. . . . if you declare with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and if you believe with your heart that God raised him from the dead, then you will be saved. It is by believing with the heart that you are justified, and by making the declaration with your lips that you are saved. Rom. 10:9-10.
The enemy’s assault on our mind can typically begin when we entertain thoughts we consider self-analytical, or reflective. Thoughts along this line will typically begin with three words that generally lead us from reflection to remorse, or regret. These three words which tend to lead one to confusion or feelings of misgiving are: Would’ve, Could’ve, and Should’ve. When we use these three words, we sap ourselves of our confidence and our ability to make decisions. . .
Specific actions are called for to combat the "ould'ves. The mindset we are to adopt is discussed in full. . .
We all have a choice- “Become a Warrior, or be a Worrier.” The two are mutually exclusive. A Warrior filled with worry cannot act as a Warrior must. When filled with the full character of a Warrior, Worry cannot enter the mind.
Phil. 4:6-7 Never worry about anything; but tell God all your desires of every kind in prayer and petition shot through with gratitude, and the peace of God which is beyond our understanding will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.
Specific behavior and mindset must be applied to defeat worry, doubt and self concern. Steps to develop these traits are discussed, and the benefits are related in a real sense and a spiritual one. . . We have been given the victory already; all that remains to be done is for us to claim it. If in our minds we know the victory is ours, then act like it! There is true power to be harnessed through positive action and a positive mindset. Try it, you’ll like it.
The Helmet of Salvation serves primarily and most obviously to protect our “head” by spiritually safeguarding our mind against doubt, worry, and fear. As the many questions we may have concerning our state of salvation are due to our mind and thinking process, it comes as no surprise that Salvation itself serves to protect the mind. Our salvation comes from our “Head” our Father- God. The scriptures are clear on this point, that we must Believe to be saved: 2By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 1 Cor. 15:2. 31And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31. 12Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. Lk. 8:12.
A comparison is drawn between conviction and belief and scriptures are used to make many direct points which relate salvation and righteousness, just as the helmet and breastplate serve to protect one another.
The Romans had an additional unique method for the conveyance of commands on the battlefield. The Romans’ use of battle standards was unique for their time. Each unit had its own standard to follow and use as a focus during attack, and a point of rally and reorganization after the confusion of battle. The fact that the Romans had a standard to follow made a great difference. The importance of a standard to be followed is mentioned again here to stress the importance of having “Standards.” Evaluate the standards you follow in your life, and if you have trouble identifying them, this should point you to a possible reason for pointless, meandering indecision found in one’s life.
Num. 2:17, 34 The order of movement will be the order of encampment, each man under his own standard . . . The Israelites did exactly as Yahweh had ordered Moses. This was how they pitched camp, grouped by standards.
Another aspect of wearing a helmet is that it focuses the concentration of your vision on what lies directly in front of you. This serves to concentrate efforts on the task, or the adversary immediately opposing one’s self. At the same time, the helmet protects the Warrior from attacks from the unseen quarters. In much the same way, the Helmet of Salvation serves to keep our concentration and energy focused, while serving to protect us from the unseen attacks of the enemy. To derive the protection of salvation, it is required that we speak our faith, and assert our acceptance of our Lord’s sacrifice for our behalf. This is the first step in donning the Helmet and allowing salvation to serve as a protection for us. We are then better able to focus on the duty at hand and not become distracted or rendered paralyzed by peripheral attacks of the enemy because of an otherwise unsettled, wondering, wandering, or idle mind.
Once we have come to terms with our salvation, we will have come into relationship with our King and Creator, and thus be able to take commands and direction of a higher order. . . . for of all the names in the world given to men, this is the only one by which we can be saved. Acts 4:12. Our decisions become clear, as our best interest is always a concern of our King; however, we must allow Him to direct us, so our actions become in accord with a divine plan. While taking correct action as directed by our King may not always be easy, the choice is clear. Your minds, then, must be sober and ready for action; put all your hope in the grace brought to you by the revelation of Jesus Christ. Do not allow yourselves to be shaped by the passions of your old ignorance, but as obedient children, be yourselves holy in all your activity . . ..
Let us now look at some scriptures and see how salvation and conviction may serve and protect us:
Ps. 62:1-2, 7 In God alone there is rest for my soul, from him comes my safety; He alone is my rock, my safety, my stronghold so that I stand unshaken. . . . In God is my safety and my glory, the rock of my strength.
Ps. 140:7 Yahweh my Lord, my Saving strength, you shield my head when battle comes. What could possibly be more indomitable than the protection of our King for our head?
Specific characteristics are required of one to develop this form of protection, and the scriptures point this out. Many examples are presented for the reader to explore. Stewardship and the giving nature of God is then studied, and we are all encouraged to avail ourselves of the many blessings God has in store for us. Scriptural principles are discussed to tap into the generous nature of God.
One final thought, to close this chapter with. Earlier in this chapter, we mentioned the intertwined nature of righteousness and salvation, or the breastplate and the helmet. The interrelated nature of Faith and Salvation (our Shield and Helmet) can also be easily found in the scriptures. The next few scriptures have an element of both aspects in them. When we examine the following scriptures, we shall see it may at times be very difficult to separate salvation and faith because of the nature of their relationship. Let us see what words of enlightenment the scriptures may have on this combination:
Isa. 12:2 2Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.
2 Sam. 22:2-7 . . . Yahweh is my strength and my fortress, my deliverer is my God. I take refuge in him, my rock, my shield, my saving strength, my stronghold, my place of refuge. My Savior, you have saved me from violence; I call to Yahweh, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my foes. With Death’s breakers closing in on me, Belial’s torrents ready to swallow me, Sheol’s snares on every side of me, Death’s traps lying ahead of me. I called to Yahweh in my anguish, I cried for help to my God, from his Temple he heard my voice, my cry came to his ears!
Many more examples are given, and shown their application in ones life. . .
To beseech our God in this fashion, one must have a personal relationship with Him. This is only possible when one knows the author of our salvation.
This will serve as a good introduction to our next chapter:
“The Shield of Faith”
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