Ephesians 6: 16 says, “above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one”.
There are many facets of faith. First of all we enter into God’s Kingdom by faith. We perform signs, wonders and miracle by faith. We even prophesy according to our measure of faith. In the scripture above, we notice that faith is also the shield that will quench the arrows of the enemy. Yet there are many who do not understand it and there are few who use it.
Faith is the most visible part of the spiritual life in a Christian. Let us say that a solder is marching toward you with his shield held rightly. It will be the most prominent thing you will ever see about him. In the same way, when others look at you walking towards them, is your faith that prominent? Our words and deeds should bring about faith in others. Sadly, some people have their shields in a place that is hardly seen. Yet some are dragging their shields behind them instead of holding it up against the enemy.
All of life’s trials that come our way are for one great purpose, our maturity. We should therefore embrace the trials as opportunities. That way, each trial the enemy flings at us will actually cause our faith muscle to grow stronger and stronger and it becomes impossible for the enemy to hurt or wound us.
Every soldier must learn to use the shield skillfully. Irrespective of the direction from which the attacks came, the warriors use their shields efficiently so that he will not miss the target from an unexpected direction. We too need to learn to be flexible with our faith. Usage of faith should accompany trust in God and assurance of His victory and never look at situations in doubt and unbelief.
Shields are of two types. One is a small circular, flat one and the other one is a long rectangular shield and is taken from the word for a door because it is shaped somewhat like a door. This is the kind of shield Paul speaks of when he says, “the shield of faith.”
A properly trained Roman soldier uses the shield so skillfully that no part of his body could be reached by the enemy. It gave him complete protection. This is the faith Paul is talking about when he refers to it as a shield.
Satan doesn’t care about the folks that do not cause any damage to his kingdom. He wants to cause trouble to those who will trouble him. The enemy first counterattacks our minds, our hearts, our bodies and our finances. So we need to have a shield that covers us. He will attack any area he could reach. If he cannot attack us, he will attack those closest to us. If you are a married person and the first thing the enemy would want to touch is your spouse. That is why you need to have shield big enough to protect you and everything around you. You, your family, and everything God has committed to you.
Faith is mentioned twice in this list of the armor. First, as a breastplate. The breastplate is faith and love and secondly, a shield is the shield of faith. Each of us of “faith” must be understood slightly differently.
The breastplate is faith for our own personal righteousness, but the shield of faith is for protection and provision for ourselves and all whom God has committed to us. It is that which covers everything. We must hold our shield of faith for full protection and provision.
May the Lord make us strong soldiers in His Kingdom. Amen.