Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sunday School: Armor of God; The Sheild of Faith

Ephesians 6:16 tells us to take up the shield of faith.
What exactly is faith? Hebrews 11:1 It's NOT the same as just believing, even the demons do that and shudder James 2 :19
Where does it come from? Romans 10:17, so listen, by reading your Bible regularly, attending a church service, listening to Christian music, participating in a Bible study, doing personal devotions, reading a blog like this- do these things and God will feed your faith in Him.

Now, what good is faith. Well let's start by considering what St. Paul and his readers in ancient Ephesus considered shields. Not a dinky little round thing like Captain America's jiffy Frisbee- Roman shields were more like lugging around a door. Most of them were like 4 foot tall by 2 foot wide, made out of wood and covered by leather- that could be soaked in water to help extinguish the flaming arrows of the enemy. Roman soldiers could just kneel down behind it and be pretty well protected. If they lined up together, it made a pretty decent wall. (see the picture above)

  • The Bible tells us that we are saved by Grace through Faith Ephesians 2:8-9
  • Because we have faith, we are no longer at war with God- I for one would rather be His ally than His enemy- Romans 5:1-2 (by the way, it's faith in Him that can get us through the hard times Romans 5: 3-5)
  • Faith makes us solid like a ROCK, like a MOUNTAIN! With faith, we cannot be moved! Psalm 125:1
  • The shield of faith works together with the breastplate of righteousness. The righteous shall live by faith Habakkuk 2:4 & Romans 1:17
Faith is even more potent in numbers though. The ancient Roman legions had a maneuver that they called "the tortoise." The front 6 soldiers made a row with their shields, and the next three rows of 7 soldiers each could all put their shields up forming a giant tortoise shell of 27 shields which was great protection against almost anything the enemy could throw at them. Cool huh?
The point is, we need to come together with other Christians to share our faith with, share our troubles with, pray for each other and with each other, and support each other in our faith and in life's struggles. See Romans 12:6-8 and 1 Thessalonians 3:10 There's power in numbers, so if you aren't in some kind of fellowship yet, ask God to lead you to a church, a Bible study or prayer group or worship community of some kind. Even if it's just a few Christian friends, a mentor or a prayer partner, God will provide you with just what He knows you need. Maybe it's just a friend or two who all challenge each other to read the Bible on their own and talk about what you've learned while you go for a walk or play video games or something as simple as that.
Remember the tortoise and the hair. There's safety in numbers.

If you're looking for something, here's your open invitation- I teach the high school Bible Study at my Church in Charter Oak, St. John's. It's at 8:50 in the kitchen in the basement, if you ever want to come sit in, you're always welcome. 104 Birch Avenue. Charter Oak, IA 51439.

Keep the faith, baybuh!
Me ka pule,

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