New Gardners Church Of God In Christ – Virtual Bible Study – August 3, 2022
The Church Of God In Christ’s national theme for 2022, is “The Challenge We Face.” It is so appropriate for the days we are living in now. We have to face a lot of challenges while remaining in the right relationship with the Lord because He is the only one who can deliver us.
We have to face challenges with determination. We have to deal with the natural responses so they don’t overwhelm us and undermine our tasks as believers.
We heard about not being weary last week in our Bible Study. We heard about how the Lord strengthens and refreshes us and about the harvest if we don’t get weary (Isaiah 40:28-31; Galatians 6:9). We also learned we have to keep our focus on God at all times. This week we will hear about persevering.
To persevere means to have the determination to continue to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition. In our case, we must keep going forth in God’s word, obeying God’s word, and participate in the spreading of the Gospel even though it might appear we aren’t getting anywhere. We must persevere in godly living. We must stay determined!
1 – 1 Timothy 4:16
“Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.”
- Paul, in a letter to Timothy, told him, that as a minister he had to take heed to his actions and the doctrine because it would save not only him but others who heard him speak about the saving power of Christ.
- This warning serves also as a warning to us.
- The enemy is seeking to wear us down physically and spiritually so your walk won’t match your talk.
- He wants to break your will and determination to glorify God with your life.
- He wants to steal your “crown of life”.
- James 1:12 – “Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”
- There are too many people professing Christ, but their actions display the opposite of what they claim.
- So God has supplied us with what we need to stay determined
2- We Have Help – The Whole Armor Of God
- We can’t stay determined without divine help and God being who He is knew we would need help. So here is what He is urging us to do.
10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
- In order to stay determined, we have to stay strong, through the power of His might.
- If we admit it, we all have been weak when we faced certain challenges. But don’t think about being weak because God has strengthened us. What? Did you think you had to fight this all by yourself?
- We can stay determined and fight off weariness and weakness by putting on the whole armor of God.
12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
- We might think the fight is against the ones who are trying to discourage us. No. They are being used as pawns in an attempt to interrupt the plan of God for your’s and the people in our circle lives.
- The fight is against the spirit of the Lord and the spirit of the devil.
13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all, to stand.
- Satan is stronger than we are but we serve a God who is stronger than he is. This is why we need the whole Armor of God!
- We cannot react with carnal weapons (our flesh), we must react with spiritual weapons that God has given us.
14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints
- In Paul’s day, a soldier’s armor consisted of six pieces of pieces. A belt, breastplate, footwear or boots, a shield, helmet, and sword.
Belt of truth – Satan is the father of lies John 8:44, and only the truth can defeat his lies. The lies that were told to you or on you came straight from Satan because he is the father of lies. Those lies were meant to discourage and/or destroy you.
- Only the truth of God can defeat the lies of Satan.
The breastplate of righteousness – Is also mentioned in Isaiah 59:17. We have been justified because we believed Christ took the punishment were supposed to get and died for our sins. Through our faith, we are no longer guilty and condemned. But Satan will try to convince us we are unrighteous and unworthy of God’s grace. The breastplate of righteousness defeats these lies before they settle in our hearts.
- His most powerful weapon is doubt. He knows how to plant the seed of doubt in our hearts. He convinced Adam and Eve they wouldn’t surely die when God told them they would just by changing one word…see Genesis 2:7 and Genesis 3:4.
Shod your feet – We have to go into some pretty tough and slippery situations when it comes to reaching the lost. So we have to have to wear proper footwear to carry the gospel of peace.
- It’s also called the gospel of peace because whoever hears and accepts the Gospel of Christ will receive peace between them and God (Romans 5:1)
The shield of faith – our faith in God. It covers us from Satan’s fiery darts he shoots at us. When we raise our shield of faith those fiery darts can’t get to us. Those fiery darts are:
fear, discouragement, confusion, doubt, and yes weariness.
Helmet of Salvation – The helmet was worn by the soldier to protect him from being killed from a head injury.
- Our helmet of salvation protects us from the devil’s attempt to kill our eternal life.
The Sword of the Spirit – Notice how the pieces of the armor are for defensive purposes.
- The sword which is the word of God, is used for offense.
- The only way we can inflict injury and thwart a spiritual attack is with the word of God.
- Just like the soldier had to practice and spend time with his sword, we have to spend time with God’s word by studying and meditating on it.
Praying always – we must pray continually and without ceasing. Jesus said in Luke 18:1 “that men always ought to pray and not lose heart (not faint),”
- Satan wants to steal our prayer life, he knows our armor is useless without it.
- When we pray, w have a conversation with the Lord and in that conversation, the Holy Spirit prepares us and brings things to our remembrance.
- We have to stay determined in this journey we’re on. We have to stay determined to please the Lord, live holy, and be obedient to God’s commands.
- I know it gets difficult sometimes but we can’t throw in the towel. We have already won the fight if we stay determined and don’t get weary of doing well.
- Satan’s job is going to try to do whatever he can to take us off of the righteous path.
- Put on the whole armor, keep fighting, and stay determined.
Written and taught by Pastor Nathaniel Jordan, Jr.
Resources: The Holy Bible (NKJV, KJV, NLT) Logos Bible Software