Ephesians 6:14 – Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place
Stand firm in the truth that if you believe in the Almighty Father that sent His only Son to be the sacrifice for us, you have life and hope. Stand firm in the truth that Jesus took the full brunt of God’s wrath. Stand firm in truth that because of Christ, you are now a child of God if you believe in Him. Stand firm in the truth that you have been pardoned from the guilt of sin. Stand firm in the truth that when you accepted Christ as your Savior, He has made you righteous.
Say those words, “I am righteous.” Not bashfully, but unapologetically. Boast in the Lord for what He has done. We can say that we are righteous because that is exactly what Christ did. It seems weird to say that when we know how sinful we are. When all we can see is our sin and problems, it is so difficult to even think that. Yet, God has allowed us to say that. By the grace of God in the gift of Jesus to bring glory to His name, we have been made righteous. How can I say that, because of what God did and what God told us in 2 Corinthians 5:21, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (italics mine).
So many times in our lives, as we face attacks and various struggles, the devil shoots all sorts of arrows at us. It causes us to question things we wouldn’t normally. He starts to twist words and our thoughts. The struggles ramp up. The pain increases. Our eyes and heart are taken off of Christ and fixed on the problem. We start fighting the battle around us. We dwell on the battle. The weight of the guilt increases. The burden becomes too heavy and we start listening to the lies. The lies have a hold of us.
“How can God love someone like you?” “How can God use someone who has done the things you have?” “If God loved you, why would He let this happen?” The attacks come on our faith. They come against our bodies. They come as we pray. They come as we read Scripture. We start forgetting the foundations of truth that our lives with God are built upon. But God does love us and still calls us His children even when we do fail. There is never anyone too far out of His reach.
There are times when these attacks really take a toll on me. I feel so awful for even battling them, but what amazes me is during these times of struggle, doubt and pain; God uses this to remind me of truth. He uses these awful attacks from Satan to remind me who He is. What He has done. It gives me a chance to be reminded of the very basic truths that Christ died for me and has given me life. He is my satisfaction and what I long for. While my body fails, He never will. Even though I may stumble, He will still love me and help me get back on track. While the guilt gets to me, He wipes it away. It isn’t fun and is actually quite frustrating to face these battles and thoughts. I can’t stand it, but by God’s grace He still teaches. He still uses it.
But that is why we need to stand firm with the belt of truth. We need to remember the foundations of our lives with God. The attacks will come and keep coming. But God will help us if we let Him. The attacks will be too much, but His truths are greater. Most of all, the Truth has set us free from our guilt, from sin and from our old lives. The Truth has given us life in a brand new exciting world.
God has set you and me apart as His very own. We have been righteous by Christ. We are His children. So the next time the attacks come, which may be in the next minute, remember who you are. You will be challenged to focus on the pain and wrong thoughts. Test those thoughts about what is in Scripture. Test those thoughts with what God has already taught you and shown you. Remember you are a child of God. Remember what He did for you in His Son. Stand firm in the confidence that the God of all creation, the only God, is for you. He is here for you. He is with you. He will not leave you. You may turn to this world to fill those longings and desires, but only He will satisfy. Keep your eyes on heaven. It won’t be easy. The struggle won’t go away quickly. It will be painful. But God will give you victory. There is only victory with God.
Here are some truths that come from a Bible study in the YouVersion app from “15 days with John Piper”
1. In Christ Jesus you were given grace before the world was created. 2 Tim. 1:9
2. In Christ Jesus you were chosen by God before creation. Eph. 1:4
3. In Christ Jesus you are loved by God with an inseparable love. Rom. 8:38-39
4. In Christ Jesus you were redeemed and forgiven for all your sins. Eph 1:7
5. In Christ Jesus you are justified before God and the righteousness of God in Christ is imparted to you. 2 Cor 5:21
6. In Christ Jesus you have become a new creation and a son of God. 2 Cor. 5:17
7. In Christ Jesus you have been seated in the heavenly places even while he lived on earth. Eph. 2:6
8. In Christ Jesus all the promises of God are Yes for you. 2 Cor. 1:20
9. In Christ Jesus you are being sanctified and made holy. 1 Cor. 1:2
10. In Christ Jesus everything you really need will be supplied. Phil. 4:19
11. In Christ Jesus the peace of God will guard your heart and mind. Phil. 4:17
12. In Christ Jesus you have eternal life. Rom. 6:23
13. In Christ Jesus you will be raised from the dead at the coming of the Lord. 1 Cor. 15:22
This is a wonderful truth. Union with Christ is the ground of everlasting joy, and it is free.
Isn’t that beautiful? Isn’t that restoring? Doesn’t that give you such hope and peace? Doesn’t it settle your heart in difficult times of trials to know that you can have peace in Christ.