Aug 6, 2020
Dear Logos Flock,
“Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Ephesians 6:14-17 (ESV)
This week I sat and talked with my former pastor Mark Toone from Chapel Hill. I could tell he was battle weary. He mentioned that he and a group of large church pastors in Washington sent a letter to the Governor’s office threatening a lawsuit if he required all churches to have no more than fifty people in worship. So far churches can still have two hundred in worship if they meet the social distancing guidelines.
Chapel Hill had twelve hundred in weekend attendance before the Coronavirus. Now a maximum number of two hundred per service are able to attend due to the restrictions. Chapel Hill’s sanctuary holds one thousand to twelve hundred people. Mark said that last week they had three hundred and twenty-five in worship. People are slowly trickling back.
How is your “shield of faith.” On Wednesday nights at Prayer Meeting we pray for the faith of the congregation. Last time I checked my “shield” had plenty of burned out gouges from the “flaming darts of the evil one.”
Make no mistake. We are in a war. You might be inclined to think it is germ warfare fighting the Coronavirus, or a political war in an election year when hyperbole, deception and accusations relentlessly zing over the airwaves. These are all manifestations of the real battle taking place on earth.
The apostle Paul says it’s a spiritual war, and the weapons of our warfare are: truth, God’s righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, and the sword of the Spirit. Pastor James Montgomery Boice comments on God’s armor:
“What do we need if we are to fight against Satan? Is it truth? Yes, we need truth, but not just any truth. We need God’s own truth: the truth of God which we find in Scripture. We need righteousness? Yes, but not just human righteousness. We need the righteousness of God. The gospel? It is God’s gospel, God’s good news. Peace? It is God’s peace. Faith? It is faith from God, a fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22). Is it salvation? God is salvation. We must be armed with him.”
Are you putting on God’s armor every day?
Grace and peace,