In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
There are some assumptions being made in this verse. Paul says that this is in addition to the pieces already talked about. This assumes that you’re already standing firm in the Word, walking in righteousness, and prepared to do God’s will.
We can stand firm in just these. What we have to realize is that when we take up the shield, we’re going from defense to offense in the spiritual battle. Up until this point, your goal is to keep the enemy from harming you.
You add the shield so that you can now defeat the enemy. You take up the Shield of Faith because you’re now going into the part of the battle where the arrows are flying.
Please understand that I’m not talking about saving faith. You’ve already trusted Christ for that. I’m also not talking about faith in the promises of God. I’m looking at using faith in the middle of the battle as a shield.
It’s your protection against the flaming arrows of the evil one. This means that there’s more than just one arrow headed in your direction.
That brings me to the word, shield, itself. The Greek word used in this verse is not the little one that looks like a trashcan cover. Get that picture out of your mind, even though most of the illustrations for the Christian armor look like that.
The word Paul uses comes from the word door. That’s because this shield is as big as a door. The soldier could hide behind it and be totally protected from these arrows as long as he stayed there.
That tells me that faith protects my whole life. So far, the armor has protected my mind, my heart, and my will. This piece protects everything else.
This shield protects me from evil. What kind of evil? I’m talking about the random evil that’s flying in the front lines. The archers on the wall loose a volley of arrows against those who are advancing. These are simply flying to take out whoever they can hit.
You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day…
If the enemy can hit our flesh with evil, then our flesh will take us out of the fight. We’ll end up battling our own sin nature instead of defeating the devil’s kingdom.
However, there’s one more purpose of the shield other than for protection. In the Roman army, everybody’s shield was painted differently. They did this because your shield identified your family. Members of the same family had the same design on their shields.
But Christ is faithful as a son over God’s house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast.
The fact is that we’re now in God’s family. This verse tells us that we can show it by our outspokenness. When we walk in faith, we can boldly declare our expectation in Christ. In that way, we show what family we belong to.
This is the shield that protects us from evil. In my next post, I’ll talk about how to use and apply this piece of armor.
Question: How has God shielded you from the enemy’s attacks?
© 2019 Nick Zaccardi