PUTTING ON THE ARMOR OF GOD #3
PAUL GIVES THE THIRD PIECE OF ARMOR WE NEED TO WITHSTAND THE ONSLAUGHTS OF OUR ADVERSARY THE DEVIL.
“AND YOUR FEET SHOD WITH THE PREPARATION OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE” [EPH. 6: 15]
SATAN WOULD LOVE TO HAVE GOD’S CHILDREN IN THE MODE OF ANYTHING BUT PEACE.
PAUL ONE TIME HAD TO CORRECT THE CHURCH AT CORINTH BECAUSE OF ALL THE DIVISIONS, AND ANYTHING BUT PEACE—— THEY WERE DIVIDING UP INTO “CLICK” OF GROUPS OPPOSING EACH OTHER AS THEY HAD THEIR FAVORITE MINISTERS— 1 COR. 1:11-14.
AND THERE WERE OTHER CONTENTIONS AMONG THEM AS PAUL BRINGS OUT IN CHAPTER 14.
THERE WAS THE WRONG WAY THEY WERE OBSERVING THE CHRISTIAN PASSOVER AS CHAPTER 11 SHOWS.
AS WE READ THROUGH THE EPISTLES OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, WE SEE THAT AT TIMES IT LOOKED LIKE THERE WAS NOT MUCH “PEACE” IN SOME OF THE CHURCHES OF GOD.
THE GOSPEL IS ABOUT PEACE; BEING RECONCILED TO GOD THE FATHER THROUGH JESUS THE CHRIST. SALVATION IS ABOUT PEACE, INDIVIDUAL PEACE.
THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS ABOUT AN AGE OF PEACE TO COME ON EARTH.
OUR FEET SHOD WITH THE PREPARATION OF PEACE MEANS, WE WALK IN PEACE AS WE MOVE IN THE SOCIETY AROUND US; IT MEANS WE ARE NOT UP-TIGHT, EDGEY, MORE THAN READY TO ARGUE; IT MEANS WE ARE NOT PUSHY, OR LIKE A BULL IN A CHINA SHOP. OUR MIND SHOULD BE RELAXED; WE SHOULD EXHBIT BASIC CALM, CONTENTMENT, HAVING A HAPPY DISPOSITION.
HOW SATAN LOVES TO HAVE GOD’S CHILDREN ANYTHING BUT PEACEFUL PEOPLE; HE RUBS HIS HANDS WITH JOY IF CHRISTIANS ARE ALWAYS EDGEY, READY TO BLOW THEIR TOP AMONG THEMSELVES OR AT PEOPLE IN THE WORLD. THE DEVIL LOVES TO WORK WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE QUICK AND HOT TEMPERED; HE LOVES TO ADD COALS TO THE FIRE ON THOSE CHRISTIANS WHO ARE STRESSED OUT AND FRAYED AT THE EDGES AS WE SAY. I MEAN HE GLOATS WHEN CHRISTIANS ARE ANYTHING BUT PEACEFUL PEOPLE.
IT’S JUST NOT POSSIBLE TO BE AN EFFECTIVE CHRISTIAN AMONG THE UNCONVERTED WORLD, IF YOU DO NOT WALK WITH PEACE, WHILE TRYING TO PROCLAIM THE CHRISTIAN GOSPEL OF PEACE—- THE TWO ARE NOT COMPATIBLE, THEY SIMPLY ARE CONTRARY TO EACH OTHER.
YOU CANNOT BE UN-PEACEFUL WHILE TRYING TO BRING THE GOSPEL OF PEACE TO THE WORLD.
YES THE NEW TESTAMENT DOES TEACH THERE IS A RIGHTEOUS ANGER, BUT THAT IS ONLY NOW AND AGAIN, AND ONLY WHEN TRULY WARRANTED, WHICH TAKES GOOD WISDOM AND JUDGEMENT; BY AND LARGE CHRISTIANS ARE PEOPLE OF PEACE.
THE WORD OF GOD HAS MUCH TO SAY ABOUT PEACE!
FROM THE KJV BIBLE:
Prov. 17:1. Better is a dry morsel, and quietness therewith, than an house full of sacrifices with strife. 14. The beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water: therefore leave off contention, before it be meddled with.
Prov. 20:3. It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling.
Eccl. 4:6. Better is an handful with quietness, than both the hands full with travail and vexation of spirit.
Isa. 2:4. He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation hall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
Isa. 45:7. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.
[GOD CAN SAY THIS BECAUSE HE IS MASTER OF ALL THINGS IN THE UNIVERSE; THE ETERNAL GOD ALLOWS EVIL FOR NOW, HE COULD STEP IN AND STOP ALL EVIL, BUT HE DOES NOT, HENCE HE CAN SAY WHAT HE DOES SAY ABOUT HIMSELF FROM THAT POINT AS THE SUPREME ONE IN THE UNIVERSE - Keith Hunt]
Jer. 29:7. And seek the peace of the city whither I have caused you to be carried away captives, and pray unto the Lord for it: for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace.
Hos. 2:18. In that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely.
Zech. 8:19. Love the truth and peace.
Matt. 5:9. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Matt. 10:21. And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death. 22. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but hethatendureth to the end shall be saved. 34. Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.
[IN OUR SPIRITUAL WALK SOME MAY NOT LIKE US; THE WAYS OF THE TRUE CHRISTIAN CAN BE LOOKED UPON AS CRAZY AND STRANGE AND DAFT - Keith Hunt]
Mark 9:50. Have peace one with another.
Acts 7:26. And the next day he showed himself unto them as they strove, and would have set them at one again, saying, Sirs, ye are brethren; why do ye wrong one to another 1 27. But he that did his neighbour wrong thrust him away, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge over us? 28. Wilt thou kill me, as thou didst the Egyptian yesterday? 29. Then fled Moses at this saying, and was a stranger in the land of Madian, where he begat two sons.
Rom. 12:18. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.
Rom. 14:19. Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another.
Cor. 14:33. For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.
Cor. 13:11. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace.
Eph. 4:3. Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
1 Thess. 5:13. Be at peace among yourselves.
Tim. 2:2. That we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
Tim. 2:22. Follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
Heb. 12:14. Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.
Jas. 3:17. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. 18. The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.
1 Pet. 3:10. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: 11. Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.
Job 22:21. Acquaint now thyself with him, and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee. 26. For then shalt thou have thy delight in the Almighty, and shalt lift up thy face unto God.
Job 34:29. When he giveth quietness, who then can make trouble?
Psa. 1:1. Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat Of the scornful. 2. But his delight is in the law of the Lord ; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
Psa. 4:8. I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.
Psa. 17:15. As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with thy likeness.
Psa. 25:12. What man is he that feareth the Lord? Him shall he teach in the way that he shall choose. 13. His soul shall dwell at ease.
Psa. 29:11. The Lord will give strength unto his people; the Lord will bless his people with peace.
Psa. 37:4. Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. 11. The meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. 37. Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.
Psa. 73:25. Whom have I in heaven but thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. 26. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.
Psa. 85:8. I will hear what God the Lord will speak: for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints.
Psa. 119:165. Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Psa. 125:1. They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth for ever. 5. As for such as turn aside unto their crooked ways, the Lord shall lead them forth with the workers of iniquity: but peace shall be upon Israel.
Prov.3:17. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. 24. When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet, vs. 13-18.
Isa. 9:6. His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Isa. 11:6. The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the falling together; and a little child shall lead them. 7. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. 8. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den. 9. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.
Isa. 26:3. Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. 12. Lord, thou wilt ordain peace for us: for thou also hast wrought all our works in us.
Isa. 27:5. Let him take hold of my strength, that he may make peace with me; and he shall make peace with me.
Isa. 28:12. To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing.
Isa. 32:2, A man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempests; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. 17. The work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever. 18. And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.
Isa. 48:18. O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments! Then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea.
Isa. 53:5. The chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
Isa. 54:1. Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord, 10. For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed: but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee. 13. All thy children shall be taught of the Lord ; and great shall be the peace of thy children.
Isa. 55:2. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? And your labour for that which satisfieth not? Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. 12. Ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Isa. 57:1. The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come. 2. He shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness. 19. I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him, that is near, saith the Lord; and I will heal him.
Jer. 33:6. Behold, I will bring it health and cure, and I will cure them, and will reveal unto them the abundance of peace and truth.
Ezek. 34:25. And I will make with them a covenant of peace.
Mai. 2:5. My covenant was with him of life and peace.
Luke 1:79. To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.
Luke 2:14. Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. 29. Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word.
John 14:27. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
John 16:33. These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace.
John 20:19. Then the same day at evening, . . . came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.
Acts 10:36. The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)
Rom. 2:10. Glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile.
Rom. 5:1. Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Rom. 8:6. To be spiritually minded is life and peace.
Rom. 10:15. And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that, preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Rom. 14:17. The kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Rom. 15:13. Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Spirit. 33. Now the God of peace be with you all.
Gal. 1:3. Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, 1 Cor. 1:3; 2 Cor. 1:2; 1 Thess. 1:1; 1 Tim. 1:2; 2 Tim. 1:2; Tit. 1:4; Philem. 3; Rev. 1:4.
Gal. 5:22. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace….
Eph. 2:14. For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; 15. Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; 16. And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: 17. And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.
Phil. 4:7. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 9. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
Col. 1:20. And having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.
Col. 3:15. And let the peace of God ride in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
2 Thess. 3:16. Now the Lord of peace himself give you peace always by all means.
THOSE ARE SOME OF THE MAIN VERSES IN THE KJV BIBLE CONCERNING PEACE.
THE WORD “PEACE” IN THE KJV BIBLE CAN BE FOUND ABOUT 426 TIMES.
EXAMPLES OF PEACE
Peace is not the absence of trouble. Peace is the presence of God.
Author Unknown (God's Presence, Difficulty)
God. . . "works always in tranquility." Fuss and feverishness, anxiety, intensity, intolerance, instability, pessimism and wobble, and every kind of hurry and worry—these, even on the highest levels, are signs of the self-made and self-acting soul; the spiritual parvenu. The saints are never like that. They share the quiet and noble qualities of the great family to which they belong.
Evelyn Underhill (Self-reliance, Stress)
When I was a teenager, our family took cross-country car trips each summer. To keep the peace, we each took a turn choosing a cassette to play in the car tape deck. No one was allowed to complain or comment about another's choice.
My mother liked to listen to hymns. I chose contemporary Christian music. My younger brother preferred rock. And Dad? He always thought the best thing was a 90-minute tape that was still blank!
Sharon Fleming (Respect, Silence)
Someone Once Said...
There was in him an inner calm hard to explain.—an unnamed officer, describing British General William George Shedden Dobbie.
The peace of God is that eternal calm which lies far too deep in the praying, trusting soul to be reached by any external disturbances.
—A. T. Pierson
Do you know what it is, when you are tossed on the waves, to go down into the depths of Godhead, there rejoicing that not a wave of trouble ruffles your spirit, but that you are serenely at home with God your own Almighty Father?
—Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Here I am at sixty five, still seeking for peace.
—H. G. Wells
A wife called the doctor one morning, saying, "Doctor, come quick! It's my husband!"
"What's the matter?" he calmly replied.
"Well, he got up this morning and took his vitamin pill. Then he took his appetite suppressant, his anti-depressant, and his tranquilizer. He also took an antihistamine and some Benzedrine. Then he lit a cigarette, and there was this explosion!"
A ship was wrecked in a furious storm and the only survivor was a little boy who was swept by the waves onto a rock. He sat there all night long until, the next morning, he was spotted and rescued.
"Did you tremble while you were on the rock during the night?" someone later asked him.
"Yes," said the boy. "I trembled all night—but the rock didn't."
The Good War
In his oral history of World War II, The Good War, author/historian Studs Terkel related the experience of David Milton who was an eighteen-year-old merchant seaman aboard ship in 1942. Milton told of one time when his ship was transporting Sherman tanks across to Europe. In the middle of the Atlantic, these tanks broke loose in a big storm. They were Sherman tanks, twenty, thirty tons. As the ship would roll, these tanks would just slide through the hole and bang up against the bulkhead. Then they'd roll the other way, just shaking the ship apart. So we pulled out of the convoy. We headed into the sea, while the deck seaman went down below to secure those tanks. They were riding them like cowboys, trying to hook cables through. Finally, they got the tanks lashed down.
The great danger to Milton's ship came, not from the storm on the outside, but by the disturbance on the inside. We can handle the stresses without only when we are battened down within.
Master, the Tempest Is Raging
President James A. Garfield had been in office only four months when he was shot in a train station in Washington, D.C., enroute to a class reunion. For weeks as he hovered between life and death, the worried nation discovered an old hymn titled, "Master, the Tempest is Raging." It was sung from coast to coast, over and over, and it gave comfort to America.
The hymn had been written by a woman at the end of her rope. Mary Ann Baker's family had been devastated by a certain disease. Her father and mother had died from it, she herself was bedridden, then her beloved brother fell ill. Hoping to find a cure, he left Chicago and traveled to a warmer climate. For weeks, the telegrams flew back and forth between brother and sister, until the last telegram came, telling her of his death.
"I have always tried to believe on Christ," she said, "and give the Master a consecrated life, but this is more than I can bear. What have I done to deserve this? God does not care for me or mine."
But gradually, the Lord brought relief and understanding into Mary Ann's heart, and she acquiesced to His will. A great peace filled her soul, one she could hardly describe. Shortly afterward, in 1874, a friend, H. R. Palmer, asked Mary Ann to write a song to go along with a Sunday school lesson from Mark 4:37-39, about Christ calming the sea.
Mary Ann hesitated at first, for she was farniliar with the superb fourteenth-century hymn on this text, the words of which were still popular in her day:
Fierce was the wild billow, Dark was the night; Oars labored heavily, Foam glimmered white.
Trembled the mariners, Peril was nigh; Then saith the God of God, "Peace! It is I!"
But she very much wanted an opportunity to express the inner peace that God had given her. She had learned that sometimes God stills the frightened disciple even more than He stills the raging elements. And so out of her own experience and from her study of Mark 4 came the words which, a few years later, comforted a nation:
Master, the tempest is raging,
The billows are tossing high;
The sky is o'ershadowed with blackness,
No shelter or help is nigh.
Carest thou not that we perish?
How canst thou lie asleep,
When each moment so madly is threat'ning,
A grave in the angry deep?
The winds and the waves shall obey Thy will:
Peace, be still.
Whether the wrath of the storm-tossed sea
Or demons or men or whatever it be,
No waters can swallow the ship where lies
The Master of ocean and earth and skies.
They all shall sweetly obey thy will:
Peace, be still; peace, be still.
One of the indelible images from the Vietnam War is the photograph of a nine-year-old girl named Phan Thi Kim Phuc. During a battle between North and South Vietnamese troops, an American commander ordered South Vietnamese aircraft to drop napalm bombs on her tiny village. Two of her brothers were killed, and she was burned badly. Wearing no clothes, she fled up the road toward the cameraman. Because of the pain her arms are held out sideways, and her mouth is open in a cry of agony.
According to Elaine Sciolino in the New York Times, Ms. Kim Phuc suffered third-degree burns over 50 percent of her body, but she lived. She endured fourteen months of painful rehabilitation and scores of skin grafts. "It was so painful to have her wounds washed and dressed that she lost consciousness whenever she was touched."
Since then she has married, emigrated to Canada, and become a Christian who hopes someday to attend Bible college. Her burned skin lost sweat and oil glands, and she is still in much pain. Scars stretch up her arms to her chest and back. But despite her past and present suffering, in 1996 she accepted an invitation from several Vietnam veterans groups to join in Veterans Day ceremonies held at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, where she laid a wreath arid spoke words of forgiveness.
"I have suffered a lot from both physical and emotional pain," she told the audience of several thousand people, who greeted her with two standing ovations. "Sometimes I could not breathe. But God saved my life and gave me faith and hope. Even if I could talk face to face with the pilot who dropped the bombs, I would tell him, 'We cannot change history, but we should try to do good things for the present and for the future to promote peace.'"
Those who suffer the most can be the greatest peacemakers.
Forgiveness, Mercy, Suffering Matt. 5:9; 18:21-35; Acts 7:54-60
BLESSED ARE THE PEACE-MAKERS, FOR THEY SHALL BE CALLED THE CHILDREN OF GOD—— Matthew 5:9