“In addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.” (Eph. 6:16)
The faithful saint now has his belt of truth, his breastplate of righteousness and his sandals of good news. Paul adds a shield. The Roman shield was a large rectangular piece that protected the entire front of the soldier. It was broad enough that when two or more soldiers stood side by side, it formed a solid wall. The shields could also be lifted over the soldier’s head to ward off a shower of arrows from the enemies’ bows. These shields were strong enough to stop not only arrows but sword thrusts as well.
One of the sharpest swords or most flaming arrow of Satan is doubt. He is the author of the question, “Is there really a God?” He encourages the world to doubt the goodness of God, the peace of God and the salvation of God. “Where is the evidence?” he asks the world. Those who doubt the existence of a loving God are victims of a bitter warfare tactic of the evil one. It was the most difficult area for Jesus to overcome when he was on earth. It was the major question he asked over and over again to those who would be his disciples. “Where is your faith?” “Even a small faith can move mountains,” he told them.
Will there be faith on earth when he returns is a question of major concern in the scriptures. The Hebrew writer tells us that without faith it is impossible to be pleasing to God. There can be no victory over the evil forces of this world without faith. Mankind has no power of his own to fight evil. In a one on one contest, the saint without a shield of faith will fall. It is the faithful saint who wins the crown, who defeats the evil one, who gains salvation and knows peace.
One of the most assuring statements in the Bible is in this verse. Did you notice that the writer concludes that the shield of faith can put out every flaming arrow? He uses the word “all.” Not one single dart can penetrate the shield of faith. Not one. Satan has numberless darts. His weapons are many and varied, and he can use them in groups. Satan can attack the Christian with a sky full of arrows that seem to be invincible but if the Christian is a faithful saint, if he is carrying the shield of faith not one of them will harm him.
Imagine if a warrior today could enter the battle knowing that he was invincible and could not possibly be defeated how unafraid he would be, how confident. Not even Superman was invincible, but the faithful saint is. Wearing the whole armor of God is absolute protection against evil.
Task for Today: Faith can be grown, it can be strengthened. Work on your faith. Lean on God, trust his word, hold his hand and walk with him. Let God shelter you under his protective wing. Believe that he reigns and not Satan. There is goodness in the world, and ultimately those on the side of good will be victorious. It is certain. Believe it!
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