Ephesians 6 – Part 3 (vs. 13-14) – The Equipment, Pt. 1

Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs 13-14), Books of the BibleEphesians 6 – Part 3
The Equipment
(vs. 13-14)

In our outline of Eph 6:10-24, we now are on the third point:

  1. The Empowerment, vs. 10.
  2. The Enemy, vs. 11-12.
  3. The Equipment, vs. 13-17.
  4. The Energy, vs. 18-20.
  5. The Encouragement, vs. 21-24.

And in our main outline of the book of Ephesians, we are on the fourth section, “The warrior’s resources.”

E. The Believer’s Walk in Warfare; God’s Provision for His Children’s Spiritual Battles, Eph 6:10-20.

1. The Exhortation to Arms, The Believer’s Warfare, Eph 6:10-13.

a.) The warrior’s power, Eph 6:10.

b.) The warrior’s armor, Eph 6:11.

c.) The warrior’s foes, Eph 6:12.

d.) The Warrior’s Resource, The Explanation of Our Armor, Eph 6:13–17.

2. God’s Appeal for Prayer in the Church, Eph 6:18-20.

F. Conclusion; Benediction, God’s Encouragement to Carry on, Eph 6:21-24.

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Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs 13), Books of the Bible3. The Equipment, vs 13-17.

Vs. 13

Eph 6:13, “Therefore, take up the full armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.”

Therefore,” is DIA HOUTOS that could be translated, “because of this, for this sake,” in reference to our wrestling with Satan and his cosmic legions. It is a call to charge, a call to mount up, a call to, “take up the full armor of God,” ANALAMBANO, in the Aorist, Active, Imperative for a command that means, “take up, take on board, receive to oneself,” we will see this word again in vs. 16, regarding the shield of faith. In the LXX this word was used for the “taking up” or rapture of Enoch and Elijah, Gen 5:24; 2 King 2:11. Then we have HO PANOPLIA HO THEOS. We noted PANOPLIA in vs. 11, for “full or complete armor,” that includes both offensive and defensive weapons. Therefore, we are commanded by God to put on God.

We also noted PANOPLIA in Luke 11:22, “But when someone stronger than he attacks him and overpowers him, he takes away from him all his armor on which he had relied, and distributes his plunder.”

Luke 11:22, speaks of being defeated in spiritual warfare. The “taking away his armor,” is analogous to the spiritual blindness Satan brings to the one who does not utilize the full armor of God when wrestling with the enemy; Satan and his cosmic system.

Therefore, in your warfare against “the schemes of the devil,” you are to arm yourself with spiritual armor in the same way that the Roman soldier was customarily equipped for his physical warfare, (perhaps one was chained to Paul at the moment of writing this); one piece at a time until he was fully equipped. That means we are to learn the word of God line upon line, precept upon precept, Isa 28:9-10.

Isa 28:9-10, “Whom shall he teach knowledge? And whom shall he make to understand doctrine? Them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. 10For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.”

Next, we have the HINA clause which begins with “that,” HINA, “that, so that, in order that, etc.,” which introduces the final purpose-result for why we need to put on the armor of God. It has two parts:

Part 1, “You may be able to resist in the evil day.”

You may be able” is the Aorist, Passive Deponent, Subjunctive of DUNAMAI, δύναμαι that means, “be able, have power to do, have capacity for.” It is inherent power to do something, the God given power and ability to stand your ground against the schemes of the Devil and his cosmic system.

The Constative Aorist views the entirety of the action of “resisting” the devil’s schemes.

The Passive-Deponent voice says that you receive this inherent power from God. This power or strength is founded in the armor of God, and the deponent here tells us we receive it through the intake and application of Bible Doctrine, while filled with the Holy Spirit. The deponent gives this an active sense while being passive.

The Subjunctive Mood is for potential. We have the potential to have the inherent power and strength of God, but it is a volitional issue, depending on whether or not you decide to buckle down to learn and apply God’s Word in your life.

Notice that the DUNAMAI is a cognate of the Noun DUNAMIS, one of the definitions of divine power the fallen Angelic race has. Once again, we see that we are on a level playing field. We are qualified for the wrestling match, and we too can have the inherent power of God to not just compete, but to win, by standing firm in our faith and resisting the scheme of the Devil.

“Resisting,” ANTHISTEMI, ἀνθίστημι, “to oppose, resist, or withstand,” in the Aorist, Active, Infinitive. The root word HISTEMI, which we will see below, means to, “stand, stand firm, place firmly, etc.” The prefix is ANTI, “against, instead of, in the place of.” This makes us the “anti-devil.”

This Constative Aorist tense also views the entirety of the Action of holding your ground.

The Active voice means you have to produce the action. In other words, once you have received the Armor of God, you have to use it. It does you no good to have the power of God and then leave it on the shelf, leave it at home, or better yet, leave it in your Bible or your study notes. It does you no good there. But when you do apply it, it does a world of good within your life and for your spiritual walk with Christ.

The Infinitive is for Purpose-Result to indicate the outcome produced by having the inherent power of God resident within your soul. You will be able to resist the schemes of the Devil, when the time comes. This is not a one-time event and then you are done. No! This is something you need to do throughout your life. Even though the trials, tribulations, and temptations come at you one event at a time, they will keep on coming throughout your life. So, we need to resist the Devil every time he rears his ugly head. That is noted in the next phrase.

ANTHISTEMI is also used in James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:9; cf. Luke 21:15; Acts 6:10.

James 4:7, “Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”

1 Peter 5:8-9, “Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.”

When we put on the full armor of God, our adversary will not be able to oppose nor defeat us.

Luke 21:15, “For I will give you utterance and wisdom which none of your opponents will be able to resist or refute.

Acts 6:10, “And yet they were unable to withstand the wisdom and the Spirit with which he was speaking.”

In the evil day,” is the Dative of EN HO HEMERA HO PONEROS. Here we see PONEROS, which is a cognate of PONERIA that we noted in vs. 12, regarding the “spiritual forces of wickedness.” Therefore, when Satan or his demons attack you with a temptation, trial, or tribulation, you are prepared for it and can stand firm. In other word, you can “resist the devil.” Even though this phrase is in the Singular, it does not assume a “once in a life time event.” Rather, it is speaking of the moment by moment events that come your way, yet one at a time. This is an Adjective to describe that the “day” HEMERA, is PONEROS, πονηρός that means, “painful, serious, grievous, bad, wicked, evil, depraved, etc.”

Remember, Satan looks for the unguarded times and areas of your life where he can get a beachhead and mount an attack against you, Eph 4:27. Therefore, this day can be “painful, serious, grievous, bad, wicked, evil, depraved, etc.” In other words, it is not always “rainbows, unicorns, puppies, and kittens” i.e., fun, to have these types of attacks. But, regardless of the severity, we have more than enough power from God to handle it and win!

As Paul noted in Eph 5:15-17, “Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.”

Part 2, “Having done everything.”

The second purpose we have in this passage for “putting on the armor of God,” is “and having done everything.”

It begins with the Coordinating Conjunction KAI, “and” that adds part 2 to part 1. Here the exhortation is to do everything we possibly can to hold our ground in the wrestling match we are a part of.

Having done” is the Aorist, Middle, Participle in the Nominative Plural of KATERGAZOMAI, κατεργάζομαι that means, “accomplish, achieve, bring about, work out, or result in.” It is a compound word from the Preposition KATA that means, “according to,” and the verb ERGAZOMAI that means, “to work, be active, do accomplish, carry out, or perform.” Generally speaking, this word places more emphasis on the end result of the action rather than on the actual act or work itself.

The Consummative or Culminative Aorist tense views the entirety of the action with emphasis on the end results or conclusion.

The Middle Voice means the results of your own actions of putting on the armor of God benefit you the believer.

The Participle in the Normative plural tells us that this then becomes a position in which we stand, a goal in which we are to accomplish.

In the ancient Greek writings of Sophocles and Plato, this word was sometimes used for, “tilling soil, cultivating land, and to practice or work at something.” Therefore, we see the imagery that we need to prepare the soil of our souls to receive the armor of God so that it takes root and blossoms in our life, so that we are victorious in the battle, cf. Mat 13:8, 23; Mark 4:8, 20; Luke 8:8, 15.

The word appears in the Septuagint, (LXX), 11 times, translating 8 different Hebrew words. While the basic meaning varies among these passages, both of the basic definitions seen above also appear. During this period, another meaning also appeared in non-canonical writings; namely, “to overpower and conquer,” e.g., 1 Esdras 4:4. This is its meaning in our passage Eph 6:13.

All of this is also some of the imagery of KATERGAZOMAI, as used in Phil 2:12; James 1:3.

Phil 2:12, “So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling;13for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”

James 1:3, “Knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.”

Now, this action of “having done” is emphasized by the Adjective, “everything,” which is HAPAS, ἅπας in the Greek that means, “all, whole, every, altogether, etc.” It means there is no stone left unturned. It means we have done everything in our spiritual walk to be prepared for the day of evil, (trials, tribulations, temptations), when it comes. We have done everything necessary to put on the full armor of God.

Then finally, we are “to stand firm,” the Aorist, Active, Infinitive of HISTEMI, the root word of ANTHISTEMI which we noted above.

The Consummative Aorist views the end results that we are able to stand firm in this spiritual wrestling match we are in.

The Active voice tells us the believer, with the armor of God in their soul, completes the action of standing firm.

This Infinitive is appositional, in that in the finality of this sentence, it links the two purposes together: 1) resist in the evil day, 2) having done everything. In fact, the latter should come first, “doing everything necessary” to put on the armor of God so that we can “resist in the evil day,” i.e., when the temptation comes. Therefore, when we put those two together, we then have the result of standing firm, and therefore we “stand firm.” This Infinitive is also like putting a semicolon before “stand firm” in English.

So, “to stand firm,” emphasizes that 1. “We are able to resist in the evil day,” and 2. “We have done everything necessary.”

Therefore, we could translate this Eph 6:13, “Because of this, (i.e., the schemes of Satan and his cosmic system), take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, (i.e., in the trials, tribulation, and temptation of Satan’s cosmic system), and having done everything; stand firm.

It is likely that Paul had in mind Isa 59:9-21, and particularly vs. 17, when he wrote these passages. They describe the hopelessness in our own power and strength against the adversary, and our hopelessness regarding our own sin. Yet, God came to our rescue through His Son Jesus Christ, who Himself came with the armor of God to win the victory for us, so that now we too can be victorious through Him and His Word resident within our souls, i.e., the armor of God. Cf. Isa 11:4-5.

Isa 11:4-5, “But with righteousness He will judge the poor, and decide with fairness for the afflicted of the earth; and He will strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips He will slay the wicked. 5Also righteousness will be the belt about His loins, and faithfulness the belt about His waist.”

As our Lord said in John 16:33, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”

Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 13 ) - (1) Books of the Bible

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Therefore, we are commanded to put on the armor, that is, take the weapons of God, and withstand Satan, all of which we do by faith. Knowing that Christ has already conquered Satan, and that the spiritual armor and weapons are available, by faith we accept what God gives us and go out to meet the foe. The day is evil, and the enemy is evil, yet Rom 8:31 tells us, “If God is for us, who can be against us?”

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Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 13 ) - (2) Books of the BibleIntroduction to the Armor of God.

Like Isa 59:17, several other NT passages speak about putting on the armor of God. Notice that there are variations in the analogies used for the specific pieces of armament. That tells us that the entire Word of God is part of our “full armor,” not just the few doctrines noted in Eph 6:13-17. Nevertheless, what we have in our passage is vital to putting on and utilizing the power of God for victory in our spiritual warfare.

Rom 13:12, “The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.”

1 Thes 5:8, “But since we are of the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope of salvation.”

In this passage, the helmet is the same, but the breastplate varies from “righteousness” in Ephesians, to “faith and love” in 1 Thessalonians. Both were written by Paul.

In Eph 6:14-17 the “full armor of God” includes 6 pieces of equipment: girded loins and a breastplate, vs. 14; footwear, vs. 15; a shield, vs. 16; and a helmet and sword, vs. 17.

 

Each of the pieces of armament are accompanied by a doctrine found in God’s Word. They include: truth and righteousness, vs. 14; the gospel of peace, vs. 15; faith, vs. 16; and salvation and the Word of God, vs. 17.

These are all Christ-like virtues that we are to take on as we grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. These virtues that are connected with the pieces of armor have already been mentioned by Paul in the Book of Ephesians, and some will be after these passages:

  1. Truth, Eph 1:13; 4:15, 21, 24-25; 5:9.
  2. Righteousness, Eph 4:24; 5:9.
  3. The Gospel, Eph 1:13; 3:6; of Peace, Eph 2:14-18; 4:3; 6:19, 23.
  4. Faith, Eph 1:13, 15, 19; 2:8; 3:12, 17; 4:5, 13; 6:23.
  5. Salvation, Eph 1:13; 2:5, 8; 5:23.
  6. The Word of God, Eph 1:13; 5:26.

 

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Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 13 ) - (4) Books of the BibleVs. 14, Truth and Righteousness

Eph 6:14, “Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness.”

This verse begins with the same command as in vs. 13, “stand firm,” with the Aorist, Active, Imperative. With this is the Inferential Conjunction OUN, “therefore.” to set up the conclusion to the preceding discussion. In other words, this is how we fight and win in the angelic conflict, this is how we stand. Here, we have six pieces of armor and weaponry to be victorious. Vs. 14, gives us two parts of the conclusion:

  • “Having girded your loins with truth,” PERIZONNUMI HO OSPHUN HUMEIS EN ALETHEIA.
  • “Having put on the breastplate of righteousness,” ENDUO HO THORAX HO DIAIOSUNE.

Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 13 ) - (9) Books of the Bible“Having girded,” is PERIZONNUMI, περιζώννυμι that means, “to gird around or about, to bind around.” It comes from the root word ZONNUMI, that means, “gird or bind about.” The prefix Preposition PERI means “around or about.” So, together it means, “to gird around,” which we could also say, “wrap around.”

In the LXX, it was used for being girded with strength or gladness, Psa 18:32; 30:11.

In the NT era, it had its literal meaning, yet it also developed a specific meaning, such as, “to put on a girdle,” which acquired the meaning of, “make oneself ready to go,” or “to take off a girdle” meant, “to rest” or “to be at leisure.” As such, sayings like, “everyone who wears the girdle,” came to mean, “men fit for war.” Thus the wearing of a girdle took on the meaning of one who is “ready” or “prepared” or “strengthened for service or action.” Therefore, for a soldier, before the armor could be put on, he had to bind the loose, flowing garments worn by people of that day, so he could enjoy freedom of movement. To tighten the belt meant a soldier was ready for duty, and to loosen it meant he was going off duty.

In our passage, it is in the Aorist, Middle, Participle in the Nominative Plural:

The Aorist is used for simple past tense “having girded.”

The Reflexive Middle voice means we receive the benefit of the past action of being girded.

The Participle of Means is used here to define how we are to, “stand firm” and also gives us contemporaneous, as well as antecedent time. In other words, we have girded ourselves in the past and remain girded in the present to fight and win.

PERIZONNUMI occurs six times in the NT. In the three occurrences in Luke it means, “to prepare oneself for service” and thus is translated in Luke 12:35, “Be dressed ready for service,” (NIV).

In Luke 12:35, the NASB has, “Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps alight.” It should read, “Let your loins be girded about, and keep your lamps burning.”

Luke 12:37, “Blessed are those slaves whom the master shall find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them.”

Luke 17:8, “But will he not say to him, ‘Prepare something for me to eat, and properly clothe yourself and serve me until I have eaten and drunk; and afterward you will eat and drink’?”

In Rev 1:13 and 15:6, the verb communicates the idea of wearing a “golden girdle” or “golden sash” (NIV), around the chest of Jesus and the angels, (see Dan 10:5), which is a mark of priestly service and triumphant royalty.

Rev 1:13, “And in the middle of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed in a robe reaching to the feet, and girded across His breast with a golden girdle.”

Rev 15:6, “And the seven angels who had the seven plagues came out of the temple, clothed in linen, clean and bright, and girded around their breasts with golden girdles.”

In Acts 12:8, some manuscripts have PERIZONNUMI, while others have the root word ZONNUMI. Nevertheless, the sense of readiness, to get up and go, is in view.

Acts 12:8, “And the angel said to him, ‘Gird yourself and put on your sandals.’ and he did so. And he said to him, ‘Wrap your cloak around you and follow me’.”

In Ephesians, it is the metaphoric use and conveys the idea of girding oneself around with the truth of God and His Word, to gain protection from the attacks of evil spiritual forces.

The area of the body girded in our verse is “the loins,” HO OSPHUS, ὀσφῦς that means, “waist or loins.” It represents anywhere in the mid-section of the body. Literally, it was used for the strong trunk of the body that gives stability and power for vigorous action. It is the part of the body where a belt or girdle gives support or binds the clothing out of the way for work, travel, or battle. In the NT, OSPHUS is used literally only in reference to John the Baptist who wore, “a garment of camel’s hair, and a leather belt about his waist / loins,” Mat 3:4; cf. Mark 1:6.

In the Scriptures, “loins” are used often to signify strength, and girded loins means the opposite of self-indulgence, ease, or carelessness.

Isa 11:5, “Also righteousness will be the belt about His loins, and faithfulness the belt about His waist.”

In the Greek culture, it stood for virility and strength, and metaphorically, for the innermost source of power for living, for working, and for passing on a heritage to posterity.

The common phrase, “gird up the loins” means, “to prepare for sustained and effective effort, to make ready for action,” Ex 12:11; 1 Kings 18:46; Job 38:3; 40:7; 1 Peter 1:13.

1 Peter 1:13 (KJV), “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”

Therefore, to be girded about your loins, speaks to your inner strength and power.

Next, we have the thing we are to gird around our loins, “with the truth,” the Dative of sphere of EN ALETHEIA, ἀλήθεια that means, “truth, dependability, freedom from error, and integrity.” Originally, the word denoted something which was not hidden or a disclosure of something which was hidden. In Greek philosophy, the word often carried the sense of that which really exists, “the reality behind all apparent reality.”

In the NT, it is used for “that which is true and correct; that which is certain and on which one can depend; that which is pure and genuine.” At the same time, the NT uses ALETHEIA to center on Jesus Christ, as grace and truth came by Jesus Christ, John 1:17, who is Himself, “the Way, the Truth, and the Life,” John 14:6. It is also used for the Word of God, and with the girding of the loins it means, Bible Doctrine resident within the soul.

2 Peter 1:12, “Therefore, I shall always be ready to remind you of these things, even though you already know them, and have been established in the truth which is present with you.”

Therefore, Paul compared the wide leather belt of the soldier to the “belt of truth” worn by the Christian who stands literally, “in the realm of truth.” The person who operates in the realm of the truth of God’s Word will not be defeated in battle.

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Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 14 ) - (5) Books of the BiblePrinciples of Truth

As we have noted, truth is a part of the Christian’s armor of God. To have the armor of God, we must have the truth within us. Therefore, it is imperative that we learn and know the truth.

First of all, God is absolute truth or as we also call it, veracity, Ex 34:6; Psa 31:5; 89:14; Isa 65:16.

Psa 89:14, “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; lovingkindness and truth go before You.”

It is one of His main attributes:

The 10 Major Attributes of God are:

Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 13 ) - (10) Books of the Bible

God’s attributes have three major characteristics; they are Eternal, Functional, and Directional.

Truth is both an “absolute attribute” of God as part of His perfection, and a “relative attribute” being His Veracity.

“Absolute Attributes” mean, they are inherent and intransitive to His being, (i.e., it does not require an object to complete its meaning). The “absolute attributes” are primary and incommunicable, (they cannot be related to something we understand). We do not come into contact with these. These attributes are most important in God’s relationship to God; they are not related to man.

“Relative Attributes” mean they are related to mankind and communicable, (we can define and understand them). They are also transitive, that means they express an action which is carried from the subject to an object, and they are anthropopathic, meaning that God often reveals Himself in terms of man’s experience and activities. Therefore, God reveals Himself to man only in terms of truth or veracity.

John 4:24, “God is a spirit; and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.”

Spirit and truth are both immaterial, yet we need both in order to know and walk with God, which He provides.

Heb 4:12, “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”

Truth is defined as, “Conformity to knowledge, fact, actuality, or logic; fidelity to an original or standard; reality and actuality. It is a statement proven to be or accepted as true. It is sincerity; integrity; honesty. Truth is most commonly used to mean correspondence with facts or with what actually occurred.”

Truth is:

  • That which is real, as compared to the fictional or imaginary. (The God of the Bible is the true God, while the gods of the heathen are vanity and nothing, mere imaginary beings, having neither existence nor attributes.)
  • That which completely comes up to its idea, or to what it claims to be. (A true man is a man in whom the idea of manhood is fully realized. The true God is He in whom is found all that deity implies.)
  • That in which the reality exactly corresponds to the manifestation. What you see is what you get. (God is true, because He really is what He declares Himself to be; because He is what He commands us to believe Him to be; and because all His declarations correspond to what really is.)
  • That which can be depended upon, which does not fail, or change, or disappoint. (In this sense also, God is true as He is immutable and faithful. His promises cannot fail; His Word never disappoints.)

Veracity is defined as, “Habitual adherence to the truth; conformity to truth or fact; accuracy; precision. Veracity implies factual accuracy and honesty, principally with respect to spoken or written expression.”

Veracity is that perfection of God, which makes all His actions and words conform to the truth. God is truth means He cannot lie because He is absolute truth, Num 23:19; Titus 1:2; Heb 6:18.

Titus 1:1-2, “Paul, a bond-servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of those chosen of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness, 2in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago.”

Heb 6:18, “So that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.”

Veracity (a transitive word) is the truth of God in relationship to His creatures in general, and to His people in particular, Psa 138:2; John 3:33; Rom 3:4.

Psa 138:2, “I will bow down toward Your holy temple And give thanks to Your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth; For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name.”

John 3:33, “He who has received His testimony has set his seal to this, that God is true.”

His veracity provides truth in His Word for us, 1 Kings 17:24.

1 Kings 17:24, “Then the woman said to Elijah, ‘Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD in your mouth is truth’.”

God means what He says in all His revelation, including; mandates, promises, judgments, and warnings, Psa 19:9; 119:142, 151; Rev 16:7.

Psa 119:142, “Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, And Your law is truth.” 

Psa 119:151, “You are near, O LORD, And all Your commandments are truth.”

Rev 16:7, “And I heard the altar saying, ‘Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments’.”

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ResurrectionResurrection Sunday

As we celebrate our Lord’s death and Resurrection today, I wanted to share with you a passage I have always been drawn to. It is the passage when Jesus Christ was before Pontius Pilate during His trials for crucifixion. In that scene, we see Jesus having a brief discourse with Pilate regarding who He is. In that event, Jesus was using the opportunity to witness the truth to Pilate for salvation. John, in his gospel, writes more about this scene than any of the other gospel writers.

John 18:33, “Pilate therefore entered again into the Praetorium, and summoned Jesus, and said to Him, ‘Are You the King of the Jews?’”

The question Pilate asked Jesus in vs. 33, “Are You the King of the Jews?” is a most significant question for Pilate. It was asked to determine whether Jesus constituted a threat to Roman civil order. Such order could be threatened by rival kings. So, he asked Jesus whether He considered Himself King of the Jews or not.

John 18:34, “Jesus answered, ‘Are you saying this on your own initiative, or did others tell you about Me?’”

This is a pointed question. You see if Pilate had said this on his “own initiative” it would have meant that he was on the path to believing in the Messiah.

John 18:35, “Pilate answered, ‘I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests delivered You up to me; what have You done?’”

This was a disheartening response by Pilate, because he had not contemplated who Jesus was. He was only going along with what the Pharisees wanted him to do. Nevertheless, if Pilate later recalled this conversation, he might have pondered Jesus’ question.

John 18:36, “Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting, that I might not be delivered up to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.”

Jesus’ reply to Pilate, “My kingdom is not of this world,” was a way to tacitly admit that He was the King of the Jews, vs. 37, but clarifying that He was not a king such as the Jews or Romans were expecting. He was a Priestly-King in the order of Melchizedek, (Heb 5:6-10; 7:1), who came to sacrifice and save.

Heb 7:1, “For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, …”

Heb 5:6-10, “Just as He says also in another passage, “YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK.” 7In the days of His flesh, He offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His piety. 8Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. 9And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation, 10being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.”

In addition, we see something of the Angelic Conflict here, as this world is currently not Jesus

Christ’s kingdom. It is currently Satan’s kingdom, as noted in Mat 4:8-10.

Mat 4:8-10, “Again, the devil took Him to a very high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world, and their glory; 9and he said to Him, “All these things will I give You, if You fall down and worship me.” 10Then Jesus said to him, “Begone, Satan! For it is written, ‘ YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD, AND SERVE HIM ONLY.'”

Now back in John 18:37, “Pilate therefore said to Him, “So You are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say correctly that I am a king. For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth (MARTUREO ALETHEIA). Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”

Jesus’ purpose as The King was the unusual one of testifying to the truth. His reply to Pilate that He came from heaven, from God the Father, to witness the truth means, He came to teach the way of salvation to all of mankind, including Pilate and the Romans who were about to crucify Him.

John 18:38a, “Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?”

Unfortunately for Pilate, he did not understand the truth at that time. Maybe, later in life, when reflecting upon his interactions with Jesus he did, but at this time, and as far as scripture is concerned, we see that Pilate did not know the truth, even when it was standing right in front of him, as Jesus is, “The Way, the Truth, and the Life,” John 14:6.

John 18:38b, “And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and said to them, “I find no guilt in Him.”

It is fascinating that after Jesus admitting that He was a King, when rival kings where a threat to Rome, that Pilate finds, “no guilt in Him.” Oh, from the mouths of babes! Pilate did not understand that Jesus was the Messiah King, yet he declared that He was without guilt, as Jesus Christ is the spotless lamb, the perfect sacrifice according to God’s Law.

And as you know the rest of the story, after the back and forth between the Pharisees, Herod, and Pilate, Pilate decides to grant the Pharisees their wish and have Jesus crucified. As a result, the true sacrifice for Israel and the entire world was completed, Heb 9:11-2.

Heb 9:11-12, “But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation; 12and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.”

Heb 9:26b, “… but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.”

The spiritual death of Jesus Christ on the Cross paid for our sins. His physical death demonstrated the completion of God’s plan for our salvation. Then three days later, Jesus rose from the dead to signify the victory won over sin and death.

1 Cor 15:54-58, “DEATH IS SWALLOWED UP in victory. 55“O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING?” 56The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; 57but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.”

Now that the victory over sin and death has been won by Jesus Christ, it is our job to go out and tell the whole world of this eternal truth, just as the Apostle began to do on the day of Pentecost, 50 days after our Lord’s resurrection, Acts 2:21-36.

And if anyone has a doubt about the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Darrel Bock wrote a nice short piece regarding the veracity that Christ was resurrected:

“The story of the four gospels stands in contrast to the culture around them, which did not regard women as reliable enough to be witnesses. All four Gospels insist that Jesus first appeared to women. This detail, running against the larger, ancient culture as it does, is one of the key evidences that these Resurrection stories were not invented by a church trying to give Jesus a higher status than He really had. Had believers merely invented these appearance-and-empty-tomb stories with the hope that they would convince the culture about Jesus, they would not have unanimously picked women to bear the story’s burden to be true. That Jesus selected women as the first witnesses to God’s great act is an affirmation of their value and merit before God.” (Breaking the DaVinci Code, pages 138-139)

So, the truth is:

1. That which the Lord brought with Him when He came down from heaven, John 18:37.

John 18:37, “Therefore Pilate said to Him, ‘So You are a king?’ Jesus answered, ‘You say correctly that I am a king. For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice’.”

2. The gospel of truth came by Jesus Christ, John 1:17.

John 1:17, “For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.”

3. Jesus Christ is, “the Way, the Truth, and the Life,” for salvation because, “no one comes to the Father but through Me,” John 14:6.

4. The Word of God that sanctifies, John 17:17.

John 17:17, “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.”

5. Receiving the truth of salvation results in eternal security, Eph 1:13.

Eph 1:13, “In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise.”

6. Having been saved, we are to go out and communicate the truth of salvation, just as the apostles did, 1 Tim 2:7.

1 Tim 2:7, “For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying) as a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.”

Pontius Pilate asked our Lord one of the most important questions in life, “What is truth.” In Satan’s world, which views all things, all thoughts, all ideas, etc., as “truth,” it is a very difficult and confusing question for people to answer.

One of the favorite sayings of the ultra-liberal, politically correct, crowd of today is, “your truth,” meaning everyone has their own truth. In other words, if you think something is true, then it is to you, and that is ok. What that means for everyone else is that we are to accept and respect each individuals’ truth, as truth, and leave them be. We are not to try to change their mind about “their truth” with “our truth.” Everyone has their own truth and that is good. Well, in reality that is not good, in fact that is anarchy. And, no society can function under anarchy. In addition, the ones who support the claim of “your truth,” do not even follow their own mantra, because as soon as another “truth” is put forward that contradicts their “truth,” they begin to get violent to force their truth to the front.

You see, that is the way of Satan and His cosmic system. It is part of the system of chaos that Satan has created. Satan’s “truth” is that he wants to be like the Most High God, Isa 14:14. But in reality, there is only one “Most High God.” Satan wants God to accept his truth, that he is co-equal with God and deserves to have his own kingdom. But the truth is, there is only “one God,” Mal 2:10; Mark 12:32; 1 Cor 8:6; Eph 4:6; 1 Tim 2:5.

So, if we accept Satan’s truth as true and God’s truth as true, which contradict each other, then “what is truth?”

Fortunately for mankind, the One God, The Most High, has given us the absolute “truth,” which is found in His Word, The Bible. When we look to the Bible, we can know the truth without doubt or wavering. At the same time, we will also understand the “untruths” or “lies” of Satan’s cosmic system that we are to reject, refute, and reprove as needed.

In fact, one of the most loving things you can do for someone, is to set them straight from the falsehoods and lies they have been operating under, thinking that they were truth. Ask yourself this question, if someone told your friend an outright lie, and you knew about it, would you just “let it be,” and let your friend operate under a lie? Or, would you do your best to give them the real truth and set them straight.

In essence, that is what we should be doing for those who are in our lives and are unbelievers. They have been told a lie about God, Jesus, and life. We need to give them the truth. We need to set them free from Satan’s lies, and we can only do that with the truth of God’s Word, John 8:32.

John 8:32, “And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”

Think about it, apart from the element of truth in God, there would be no certainty at all in this life, and we would wander on in comfortless perplexity not knowing where we came from or where we are going. For those who reject God and Jesus Christ, that is the state in which they live.

On the other hand, truth in God is surety that what He has disclosed is according to the true nature of things and that His disclosures may be depended upon with complete certainty. This certainty characterizes every revelation from God.

God is truth means He is absolutely dependable, without falseness of any kind. God’s plan, principles, and promises are completely reliable, accurate, real, and factual, Isa 25:1.

Isa 25:1, “O LORD, You are my God; I will exalt You, I will give thanks to Your name; For You have worked wonders, plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness.”

The Father is said to be truth by the Son, John 7:28; 17:3.

John 17:3, “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”

Jesus Christ is, “The way, the truth, and the life,” John 14:6.

Regarding the Holy Spirit, “The Spirit is the truth,” 1 John 5:6.

This attribute of God is the ground of all our assurance, as God’s truthfulness is a rock of assurance for the people of God, Deut 32:4; Micah 7:20.

Deut 32:4, “He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.”

God’s veracity is evident in:

a.) His words. The setting forth of God’s truth is in the Bible. It, being the Word of God, is true in all its parts. There is a vast array of truth, themes, and subjects about which man could not know by himself. The Bible supplies this dependable information, 2 Sam 7:28; Psa 12:6; John 8:45‑46; 17:17; 2 Cor 6:7.

2 Sam 7:28, “Now, O Lord GOD, You are God, and Your words are truth, and You have promised this good thing to Your servant.”

John 17:17, “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.”

Psa 12:6, “The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace on the earth, refined seven times.”

b.) His works, Psa 33:4; 111:7-8; Dan 4:37.

Psa 111:7, “The works of His hands are truth and justice; All His precepts are sure.”

c.) His ways, Psa 25:10; 86:15; Rev 15:3.

Rev 15:3, “And they sang the song of Moses, the bond-servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, ‘Great and marvelous are Your works, O Lord God, the Almighty; Righteous and true are Your ways, King of the nations!’”

Regardless of how things seem in this life, because God is truth, we can count on the Lord, always. Therefore, understanding who and what God is and relying upon His perfect character for both adversity and prosperity builds a foundation of confidence and inner peace. The results are wise decisions and actions in every circumstance of life.

Many ask, “How do I know if I am learning truth or receiving truth?” Well, the simple answer is, Truth will cause you to be stable, certain, and sure. As we have noted, the basic Hebrew word for Truth is EMETH that means, “stability, certainty, and trustworthiness.” It means that which produces faithfulness, stability, and security. Therefore, truth is firmness, security, and integrity of mind. If you lack faithfulness, stability, and security, it is usually because you lack Truth, (i.e., Bible Doctrine in your soul) in your life. 

Prov 23:23, “Buy truth, and do not sell it, also buy wisdom and instruction and understanding.”

God’s righteousness loves to see His Truth in action, especially in you when you have stability of mind and soul. Therefore, truth is something we must be taught. It does not come naturally, it must be “put on,” Eph 6:14. Cf. Psa 25:5; John 8:31-32.

Psa 25:5, “Lead me in Your Truth and teach me: for You are the God of my deliverance.”

John 8:31-32, “If you continue in My Word then are you My disciples indeed. And you will know the Truth and the Truth will make you free.”

To reveal Himself to mankind and angles, God can only do so in terms of truth. Therefore, Bible doctrine is absolute truth and perfectly reveals the truth and holiness of God. The whole purpose of the Gospel and the object of salvation is to bring us to the truth about God, Psa 31:5; 40:11; 91:4.

Psa 31:5, “Into Your hand I commit my spirit; You have ransomed me, O LORD, God of truth.” 

Psa 40:11, “You, O LORD, will not withhold Your compassion from me; Your lovingkindness and Your truth will continually preserve me.”

Psa 91:4, “He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His truth is a shield and bulwark.”

“Bulwark” is the Hebrew word SOCHERAH (so-kay-raw’), used only here in the entire O.T. It is something surrounding the believer similar to the analogy of the “armor of God,” especially the girding of the loins with truth. Truth protects us and surrounds us.

Truth protects us and keeps us from deception. This is why the apostle Paul warns us that in the last days truth will be rejected and deception accepted. There are many false doctrines which oppose and supplant the known will of God which can only be rejected by those which believe and know the truth, 2 Thes 2:10-11; 1 Tim 4:3; 2 Tim 3:5-8; 4:1-4.

1 Tim 4:3, “Men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth.”

Truth is always accompanied by God’s grace and mercy, which combined provides blessing to man, Psa 26:3; 85:10-11; Isa 65:16; John 1:14.

Isa 65:16, “Because he who is blessed in the earth will be blessed by the God of truth; and he who swears in the earth will swear by the God of truth.”

Psa 85:10-11, “Lovingkindness and truth have met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other. 11Truth springs from the earth, and righteousness looks down from heaven.”

Therefore, we should be presenting our hearts to the Lord as, “teachable,” to receive the truth of His Word, Psa 25:5; 86:11.

Psa 25:5, “Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; For You I wait all the day.”

Psa 86:11, “Teach me Your way, O LORD; I will walk in Your truth; Unite my heart to fear Your name.”

Truth must be taught. This is why fathers are told in Deut 6:6-9; Isa 38:19, to make truth known to their children.

Deut 6:6-9, “These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. 7You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. 8You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. 9You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”

Truth must be taught. This is why in Mat 22:16, our Lord taught the way of God in truth.

Truth must be taught. This is why the apostle Paul tells us that God’s will for all mankind is, “to be saved and then to come to the knowledge of the Truth,” 1 Tim 2:4.

Truth must be taught. This is why we are commanded in Prov 3:3, to bind it to our necks and have it written upon the tables of our hearts, so that it will never be lost.

Prov 3:3, “Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.”

Truth must be taught, because God desires truth to be within us, 2 Cor 11:10, “As the truth of Christ is in me….,” because without Truth it is impossible to properly worship God, John 4:23-24.

John 4:23-24, “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. 24God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Truth must be taught, because God is to be served in truth, and our walk before Him is to be done in truth, Josh 24:14; 1 Sam 12:24; 1 Kings 2:4; 1 John 1:6.

Josh 24:14, “Now, therefore, fear the LORD and serve Him in sincerity and truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD.”

1 Sam 12:24, “Only fear the Lord, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider what great things He has done for you.”

1 Kings 2:4, “…If your sons are careful of their way, to walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, you shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel.”

Psa 86:11, “Teach me Your way, O LORD; I will walk in Your truth; Unite my heart to fear Your name.”

Truth must be taught, because Truth is to be meditated upon, believed, and embraced, Phil 4:8; 2 Thes 2:12.

Truth must be taught, because Truth is the basis for our Christian fellowship and love for one another, 1 Peter 1:22.

1 Peter 1:22, “Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart.”

Truth must be taught, because love will always rejoice in the truth, 1 Cor 13:6.

1 Cor 13:6, “Love does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth.”

Truth must be taught, because Truth is according to godliness, Titus 1:1.

Titus 1:1, “Paul, a bond-servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of those chosen (the elect) of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness.”

Truth must be taught, because Truth abides continually with the saints, 2 John 2.

2 John 1:2, “For the sake of the truth which abides in us and will be with us forever.”

Truth must be taught, because our prayer life will be more effective when we walk in Truth, 2 Kings 20:3.

2 Kings 20:3, “Remember now, O LORD, I beseech You, how I have walked before You in truth and with a whole heart and have done what is good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.”

Truth must be taught, because the fruit of the Spirit is accomplished in the sphere of Truth, Eph 5:9.

Eph 5:8-9, “For you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light, 9(for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth).”

Truth must be taught, so that the people of God, as His servants, always speak the Truth, especially to one another, Zech 8:16; Prov 12:17, 22; 2 Cor 12:6; Eph 4:15, 25; Col 3:9.

Zech 8:16, “These are the things which you should do: speak the truth to one another; judge with truth and judgment for peace in your gates.”

Eph 4:15, “But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ.”

Eph 4:25, “Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE of you WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another.”

Truth must be taught, even if others do not always appreciate hearing the Truth spoken, Gal 4:16.

Gal 4:16, “So have I become your enemy by telling you the truth?”

Truth must be taught, because Truth is what will judge the believer at the Bema Seat Judgment, and the unbeliever at the Great White Throne Judgment.

Heb 4:12, “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”

John 12:48, “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the Word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day.”

Psa 96:13, “For the Lord is coming to judge the earth; He shall judge the world with righteousness and the people with His Truth.”

This is why if a Pastor really loves and worships the Lord, he will 2 Tim 2:15, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.”

And He will feed the flock of God, John 21:15-17, “If you love Me, feed My sheep, … lambs…” Feed them what? Truth, 2 Cor 6:4-8.

2 Cor 6:4-8, “But in everything commending ourselves as servants of God, in much endurance, in afflictions, in hardships, in distresses, 5in beatings, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in hunger, 6in purity, in knowledge, in patience, in kindness, in the Holy Spirit, in genuine love, 7in the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and the left, 8by glory and dishonor, by evil report and good report; regarded as deceivers and yet true.”

It gives the Pastor and God great joy to see His children walking in truth, 3 John 1:4.

3 John 1:4, “I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth.”

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4 8 18 Breastplate of Righteousness Eph 6 vs 14The Breastplate of Righteousness.

In Eph 6:14, we now address the second piece of armor, “the breastplate of righteousness.” The verse reads, “Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness.

And having put on,” is KAI ENDUO, where ENDUO is in the Aorist, Middle, Participle in the imperative sense, which continues the command to put on the armor of God. We noted ENDUO in vs. 11, for “putting on the whole armor of God.” Here it relates to just the breastplate of righteousness.

The Culminative Aorist tense contemplates the entirety of the action with a view to the past completed action of “having put on” this portion of the armor.

The Middle Voice is reflexive. We benefit from the action of “having put on,” yet it is not the active voice, because as we will see, God is the One who gives us righteousness. We do not achieve our own righteousness. But in faith, we appropriate the righteousness of God, which is a grace blessing to us. So, the reflexive Middle correlates with the non-meritorious act(s) of faith we apply and, as a result we benefit.

“The breastplate,” is the Nominative singular of HO THORAX. Generally, this word denotes a “breastplate” as a piece of protective armor worn in battle or which covers the chest.

 

In English, “thorax” is used in anatomy where it is the part of the body of a mammal between the neck and the abdomen, including the cavity enclosed by the ribs, breastbone, and dorsal vertebrae, and containing the chief organs of circulation and respiration; the chest. In Greek, the THORAX is the armor that protects that vital area of the human anatomy. “The breastplate,” was usually composed of metallic plates, chains, or scales, but sometimes made of leather or bronze, covered the torso, (neck to waist), both front and back, and protected the vital organs of the body; the heart, the lungs, etc. The breastplate often saved the Roman soldier from being mortally wounded.

Similarly, the person who is “righteous” will not be mortally wounded in the spiritual warfare in which he is engaged. The breastplate is held in place by the belt of truth, and it becomes obvious that this righteousness is totally dependent upon truth, Bible doctrine in the soul.

THORAX is used here and in 1 Thes 5:8; Rev 9:9, 17.

The NT primarily uses it figuratively, describing the protective power of “righteousness,” during the Angelic Conflict, similar to Isa 59:17, which describes the Lord Jesus coming with salvation, cf. Wisdom 5:18.

Isa 59:17, “And He (the Lord) put on righteousness like a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on His head; and He put on garments of vengeance for clothing, and wrapped Himself with zeal as a mantle.” 

In 1 Thes 5:8, we see portions of the armor of God noted. There, the “breastplate” represents “faith and love,” as opposed to “righteousness,” as in our verse. Therefore, we see that “faith and love” go hand in hand with righteousness. As faith appropriates righteousness and love expresses it.

1 Thes 5:8, “But since we are of the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope of salvation.”

This word is used in Rev 9:9, to describing the appearance of the torturing locust set loose during the Fifth Trumpet judgment of the Tribulation. The locus will torment only unbelievers during that time.

Rev 9:9, “They had breastplates like breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots, of many horses rushing to battle.” This may be how John was explaining his vision of a helicopter? Or better, it is a literal tormenting creature of the Tribulation.

Finally, THORAX is used in Rev 9:17, during the Sixth Trumpet judgment, to describe the angelic horsemen who will kill one third of mankind on earth at that time. The color of the breast plate is fiery red/orange and dark blue/purple.

For the believer of the Church Age, our breastplate is described as being, “of righteousness,” which is the Genitive of Material of HO DIKAIOSUNE, δικαιοσύνη that means, “righteousness, uprightness, equity, or justice.” In other words, the breastplate is made out of “righteousness.”

Righteous is defined as, “meeting the standards of what is right and just; morally right; guiltless.” Synonyms of righteousness include, “virtue, morality, justice, decency, uprightness, honesty, blameless, etc.”

Like “truth,” we see that God is absolutely righteous in all that He is and does, and man can have and experience that righteousness in his life. When He does, it is armor for his soul.

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Eph 6 - Part 3 ( vs. 14 ) - (4) Books of the BibleDivine Righteousness

1. God possesses eternal, unchangeable, and perfect righteousness.

2. All justice is administered from the perfect righteousness of God, cf. Lev 19:2; 1 Sam 2:2; Psa 22:3; 47:8; 119:9; John 17:11; Rev 3:7; 4:8; 6:10. Many passages tell us that behind God’s justice and judgments is the other half of Divine holiness, which is God’s perfect and absolute righteousness.

3. God is absolute Good. Absolute good is perfect righteousness, Psa 25:8; 34:8; 86:5; 119:68; Luke 18:19.

4. God is perfect, both in His person and in His character, Deut 32:4; Psa 7:9; 11:7; 97:6; 113:3; 119:137; Jer 23:6; John 17:25; Rom 1:17; 10:3; 1 John 2:29.

5. God is totally free from sin. God has never sinned. God cannot tempt or solicit to sin. God cannot in any way be involved in sin except to judge it, James 1:13.

6. The righteousness of God is the principle of Divine integrity. The justice of God is the function of Divine integrity. What the righteousness of God demands, the justice of God fulfills.

7. God’s righteousness is seen in two ways:

a.) He is a righteous Person, James 1:17.

James 1:17, “Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.”

b.) He is righteous in all His ways, Rom 3:25-26.

Rom 3:25-26, “Whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; 26for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.”

Righteousness in God means that all that He does is perfect and absolutely right/correct. God never makes a wrong or unrighteous decision. All of God’s judgments are righteous, as well as being holy in nature, (i.e., they are without sin and evil), Rev 16:5-7.

When His righteousness combines with His love, it results in grace. The grace pipeline….

Rom 14:17, “For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”

2 Cor 5:21, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

1 Cor 1:30, “But by His (God the Father’s) doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom (truth) from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption.”

As perfect and absolute righteousness, God rejects all relative standards of righteousness, and therefore all human standards of righteousness, with the one exception of human compliance with the laws of Divine Establishment. Isa 64:6, tells us exactly where human righteousness will get us with God.

Isa 64:6, “For all of us have become like one who is unclean, and all of our righteousness is as filthy [menstrual] rags, and all of us wither like a leaf, and all of our sins like the wind take us away.”

God cannot accept anything less than perfect righteousness, and God cannot bless anything less than perfect righteousness. We possess that perfect righteousness as a double portion (the imputation of God the Father’s righteousness and sharing the righteousness of our Lord who is the head of our body) at the very moment we believe in Jesus Christ. This perfect Divine righteousness resides in every believer from the moment of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

Mat 6:33, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

Rom 3:22, “Even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction, (between Jew and Gentile).”

Phil 3:9, “And may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.”

Jesus Christ was made to be our substitute at the Cross in order that we might receive the forgiveness of all our sins with the result of the imputation of God’s righteousness, so that we could walk/live in righteousness.

The noun “righteousness,” DIKAIOSUNE, its related adjective “righteous,” DIKAIOS, and the verb “to justify, to pronounce/treat as righteous or put right,” DIKAIOO are found in Paul’s writings over 100 times. The sheer volume of occurrences in their various usages and meanings indicates the central place they had in the theology of the apostle.

For the believer, there are three aspects of righteousness that we see within the Bible.

  1. The righteousness of God that is imputed to the believer at the point of salvation: Positional Righteousness.
  2. The walk in righteousness post salvation; Experiential Righteousness: Experiential Righteousness.
  3. The ability to be blessed in time and eternity because of righteousness in us: Ultimate Righteousness.

1. The Righteousness of God Imputed to the Believer at the Point of SalvationPositional Righteousness.

The imputation of God’s righteousness to the believer at salvation is one of two judicial imputations of God. They are judicial because there is no affinity between the thing imputed and the one receiving the imputation. It is judicial because in God’s perfect righteousness and justice He is able to impute something to someone that does not have a natural coalescence for or identification with the thing being imputed.

There are two judicial imputation of God:

  1. The personal sins of every member of the human race to Jesus Christ on the Cross.
  2. The perfect righteousness of God to the believer at the point of salvation.

God’s perfect justice allowed for both as part of His plan of redemption. Because of the first, the second was made possible.

2 Cor 5:21, “He (God the Father) made Him (Jesus Christ) who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, (as a substitute for us), so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

Christ accomplished what the Law could not do: through His spiritual death upon the cross, believers are made righteous, Rom 8:3-4; 10:4; 2 Cor 5:21; Gal 2:21; cf. Gen 15:6.

Rom 10:4, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.”

Gen 15:6, “Then he (Abraham) believed in the LORD; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness.”

There is also another category of Divine Imputations called “Real Imputations” that includes 5 imputations:  1) Human life to the soul, 2) Adam’s original sin to the Old Sin Nature, 3) Eternal life to the human spirit, 4) Blessings in time to perfect righteousness, and 5) Blessings in eternity to the resurrection body.

Because of the judicial imputation of righteousness to the believer at the moment of salvation, God is also able to provide the real imputation of blessings in time to the believer because he possesses perfect righteousness in his soul, and He is able to provide blessings in eternity to the resurrected believer. Some of those blessing are based on the imputation of God’s righteousness giving us Positional Sanctification, and others based the application of righteousness in our lives, our Experiential Sanctification. We will discuss this further below.

Paul states that righteousness in believers is the result of a word, or declaration, of God. In Rom 4, where Paul interprets Abraham’s relationship with God as a scriptural foundation for his understanding of the believer’s “justification by faith,” explained in Rom 1-3, righteousness is said to be “reckoned to or credited to” Abraham by God on the basis of Abraham’s faith, (i.e., believing / trusting in God), Rom 4:3, 5-6, 9, 11, 22, rather than on the basis of his works. In Gal 3:6, Abraham’s faith in God is “reckoned to him as righteousness.” Here, Abraham’s trusting submission to God is evaluated as “righteousness.”

Closely related to the above are those passages where righteousness is stated to be a gift of God reigning in the believer, Rom 5:17, 21. Here it is seen as a reality which dominates or directs the life in Christ, cf. Rom 8:10.

Rom 8:10, “If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness.”

This righteousness results from God’s grace, for if it were possible to achieve it via obedience to the Law, Christ’s death would have been in vain, Gal 2:21.

Gal 2:21, “I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly.”

In addition, in Gal 3:21-22, righteousness is equated with life, which the Law is powerless to produce.

Gal 3:21-22, “Is the Law then contrary to the promises of God? May it never be! For if a law had been given which was able to impart life, then righteousness would indeed have been based on law. 22But the Scripture has shut up everyone under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.”

Therefore, righteousness is first a grace gift of God, given to the believer at the moment of faith in Christ as your Savior.

Knowing that we have the grace gift of the perfect righteousness of God is a part of “putting on” the breastplate of righteousness. Having the perfect righteousness of God means you have the perfection of God in you and you are eternally saved. Both factors should give you tremendous confidence going forward in life. Knowing that regardless of how you sin or fail, you have perfection inside of you, and God will never abandon you, regardless of how badly you may mess up, Rom 5:1, 9, 18-19.

Rom 5:1, “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Rom 5:9, “Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.”

Rom 5:18, “So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.”

Rom 5:19, “For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.” 

Rom 8:1, “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

This also tells us of the importance of justification. Justification, “the establishment of a right relationship with God,” is based upon God’s gift, Rom 3:21-24, to be received by faith, not by man’s actions, Rom 3:25; 4:3-22; 9:30; 10:3, 6ff; cf. Gal 3:6; Phil 3:9; Titus 3:5.

You see, justification is the result of the imputation of perfect righteousness at salvation. God sees His own perfect righteousness in us and justifies us by virtue of possessing that perfect righteousness. Justification is God recognizing perfect righteousness wherever it resides. It is God recognizing His own perfect righteousness imputed to you at the moment of faith in Christ, Rom 3:24; 8:30; 9:30; 1 Cor 6:11; Titus 3:7.

Rom 3:24, “Being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus.”

1 Cor 6:11, “Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. 

Rom 8:30, “And these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”

Rom 9:30, “That the Gentiles who did not strive for divine righteousness have attained divine righteousness, that is the righteousness from the source of faith in Jesus Christ.”

When we truly realize that God has given us His perfect righteousness from the moment of our salvation, and that He will never take that Divine righteousness away, we realize we are also justified in God’s eyes to be members of His eternal family. Therefore, when Satan accuses us, it is the righteousness of Christ in us that assures us of our salvation. With the knowledge of the position we stand in, and the Divine blessings of righteousness and justification, we stand confidently before God, angels, and man. We stand confident in the position and relationship we have with the Lord. Standing confident in the knowledge of our positional righteousness is part of “putting on the breastplate of righteousness.”

2. The Walk in Righteousness Post Salvation: Experiential Righteousness.

The second part of “putting on the breastplate of righteousness,” is our daily walk in righteousness, also called our experiential sanctification. This is our faithful walk in righteousness.

Prov 2:20, “So you will walk in the way of good men and keep to the paths of the righteous.”

Prov 8:20, “I walk in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of justice.” 

Hosea 14:9, “Whoever is wise, let him understand these things; Whoever is discerning, let him know them. For the ways of the LORD are right, and the righteous will walk in them, but transgressors will stumble in them.”

Rom 8:4, “That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” 

1 John 2:29, “If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone also who practices righteousness is born of Him.”

In 2 Cor 6, when Paul is discussing his servanthood to God, one of the things he mentions is having “righteousness” as a weapon for fighting the spiritual warfare in vs. 7.

2 Cor 6:7, “In the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and the left.”

Therefore, we see that righteousness is the mark of the Christian way of life; acting rightly, justly, morally, in contrast with evil, falsehood, inequality, etc. It is a weapon for both hands, because it can be used in all aspects of our life. As a warrior, Paul wore the whole armor of God with weapons of defense in his left hand and offense in his right, just as we can too. Righteousness is both a defensive and offensive weapon in the spiritual warfare.

With this we also note that, “the word of truth in the power of God” creates this armament as experiential righteousness is based on having the belt of truth, (God’s Word), resident within your soul. It is the Word of God that gives us the understanding and means of walking in righteousness; defensively and offensively, just as the gospel gave us the understanding and means of receiving positional righteousness at salvation.

The use of righteousness is then in an ethical sense. It characterizes the life of obedience to God and His Word of those who have been justified. That is why Rom 6:13, 18-20, contrast lives/bodies as instruments or slaves of wickedness with lives yielded to God as instruments of righteousness. In these and other passages, is the expected result of life lived in relationship with Christ, right-living that is in keeping with God’s purposes. Righteousness, together with peace and joy, is that which marks the believer’s relationship with God and others, (rather than judging or offending others), and is the result of God’s reign in your life.

Rom 6:13, “And do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”

Rom 6:18, “And having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 

Rom 6:19, “… For just as you presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, resulting in further lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness, resulting in sanctification.”

Just as righteousness began in us by faith, it should continue to operate only by faith after our salvation, Gal 3:1-14.

Gal 3:11, “Now that no one is justified by the Law before God is evident; for, ‘THE RIGHTEOUS MAN SHALL LIVE BY FAITH’.” Cf. Hab 2:4; Rom 1:17; Heb 10:38.

Positional and Experiential Righteousness are gifts of God’s grace that come to believers in the context and through the instrumentality of faith. When Paul speaks about righteousness and faith, it is almost always contrasted with a legalistic, or Law-oriented, righteousness. Thus, in Rom 4:11, 13-14, the “righteousness of faith” is said to be based neither on circumcision nor on the deeds of the Law. In Rom 9:30-32; 10:4-6, 10, the righteousness that comes by faith is contrasted with that which is based on the Law and the doing of the works of the Law. Only the former leads to life, to salvation.

Phil 3:9, speaks of the righteousness that results from faith in Jesus, rather than “my own righteousness” based on Law. This righteousness by faith is of course the righteousness from God, “which depends on faith.” This conviction is affirmed by Paul in contrast to his own former experience where, on the basis of Law-based righteousness, he judged himself as “blameless,” yet that was not good enough to save him, Phil 3:6. Such moral perfectionism as that which Paul had by pedigree and personal endeavor does not, however, bring one into right relationship with God. According to Titus 3:5, believers are saved, not because of deeds done in righteousness, (here righteousness means “legal obedience”), but by God’s merciful, atoning work in Christ.

Titus 3:5, “He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Therefore, that brings us back to Gal 3, were Paul is making the argument, “if we began in righteousness by faith, let us continue to walk in righteousness by faith.” That is why in 1 Thes 5:8, the breastplate is made up of “faith and love.” When we walk by faith, we produce AGAPE love which is the righteousness of God in us.

That is why righteousness is that quality of life which bears fruit, i.e., Divine Good Production, 2 Cor 9:10, Gal 5:22; Eph 5:9; Phil 1:11.

2 Cor 9:10, “Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.”

Phil 1:11, “Having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

Walking in God’s righteousness is one of the marks of those who are “children of light” in distinction from those who perform “unfruitful works of darkness,” Eph 5:9.

Eph 5:9, “For the fruit of the Light is in all goodness and righteousness and truth.”

Likewise, in Eph 4:24, righteousness is paired with “holiness of the truth” as resembling God, in contrast to corrupt, deceitful living.

Eph 4:24, “And put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.”

As such, Experiential Righteousness is not passive; it is to be pursued. It is the mark of the believer, and without active “doing” there is no real relationship (i.e., righteousness) with God. Therefore, we are exhorted to “pursue righteousness,” 1 Tim 6:11; 2 Tim 2:22, and receive “training in righteousness,” 2 Tim 3:16; the context is clearly that of moral, ethical living based on faithful application of Bible Doctrine resident within your soul, cf. 1 John 2:29; 3:7-10; James 2:17.

1 Tim 6:11, “But flee from these things, you man of God, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness.”

2 Tim 2:22, “Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.”

1 John 3:7, “Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous (experientially), just as He is righteous, (positionally).”

“Practices righteousness” in 1 John 3:7, refers to spending time living in, celebrating, or experiencing the imputed righteousness of God by applying truth, (His Word), in love to both God and man. This is also called Experiential Sanctification. In contrast, 1 John 3:8, tells us that the one who “practices sin” does not practice the righteousness of Christ and is a child of the devil, i.e., fully engrossed in Satan’s Cosmic System.

When it says, “the devil has sinned from the beginning,” it is first a reference to Satan’s rebellion in eternity past and second to his work in the Garden of Eden where he tempted the perfect man to sin, thereby destroying the perfect righteousness in man created in the image of God, as he did with the fallen angels in eternity past. To remedy the loss of perfect righteousness in man, God sent His Son, as we have seen and again see in this verse.

Now, 1 John 3:9 says, “No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.”

This verse tells us that the one “born of God” has a new regenerated nature and spiritual life found in their Human Spirit. The Human Spirit is a place of perfect Divine righteousness and is without sin. Sin is in our bodies and can penetrate our souls, if we let it, but sin never penetrates our Human Spirit. Our new Divine nature can “never” sin and is the very righteousness of God, cf. Eph 4:24.

Eph 4:24, “And put on the new man, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holy observance of the truth.”

Notice how “holy observance of truth” is linked with righteousness. This is our walk in righteousness.

The regenerate Human Spirit provides the believer the means by which the Holy Spirit can reproduce the righteousness of God experientially in the soul and body of the believer who is obedient to the Word of righteousness, 1 Cor 2:12-14.

Our new Christ-like nature provides us with the capacity to “practice the righteousness” of God, which is manifested by obeying the Lord Jesus Christ’s command to love one another as He has loved the believer, 1 John 3:11, 16, 18.

If we are living the life that God has given to us, we will avoid sin(s) within our lives. We have the perfect righteousness of God inside of our new perfect nature. With that, plus the righteousness from the indwelling of God the Holy Spirit and the righteousness of the Mind of Christ (Bible Doctrine) in our souls, we should be living unto God, abiding in Christ. Yet, many believers do not utilize the righteousness of God in their lives and do not take in the Word of God on a consistent basis. For them it is inevitable that they will be living just as an unbeliever lives, in sin, as a child of the father of sin, the devil himself.

The imputation of perfect righteousness at salvation becomes both motivation and momentum in the Christian way of life: motivation to persist in the perception of Bible doctrine, and momentum for continuing the metabolization of Bible doctrine. The result is maximum doctrine resident in the soul producing spiritual maturity adjustment to the justice of God, and the practical righteousness of everyday living and conduct. The Truth (Word) of God trains the believer to live in the righteousness of God since it is the mind and thinking of Jesus Christ Himself, 2 Cor 6:7; Gal 3:11; 2 Tim 3:16-17; Cf. John 1:1.

2 Tim 3:16-17, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”

Gal 3:11, “Now that no one is justified by the Law before God is evident; for, ‘THE RIGHTEOUS MAN SHALL LIVE BY FAITH’.”

2 Cor 6:7, “In the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and the left.”

And, remember that this is not a righteousness of our own morality or human good works, it is a righteousness appropriated by faith in the Word of God and the filling of the Holy Spirit. Jesus Himself warned us that except our righteousness exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees; we shall in no way enter the Kingdom of Heaven. The only righteousness that exceeds theirs is a faith based one; a righteous living in faithful obedience to God and His Word seeking His grace. We noted this word in Eph 4:24; 5:9.

Eph 4:24, “And put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.”

Eph 5:9, “(For the fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth).”

Conclusion

Therefore, put on those righteous qualities associated with your new life in Christ, the same righteous qualities reflected in the life of Jesus. Put on the breastplate of righteousness, so you do not give an inch to Satan in the areas of impurity, lust, greed, or injustice. Realize who you are in Christ, and live out that new identity in righteous living.

The imputation of God’s righteousness at salvation results in our Positional Sanctification, while living in the righteousness of God after our salvation results in our Experiential Sanctification.

Rom 1:16-17, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17For in it (the gospel) the righteousness of God is revealed from faith (for positional righteousness) to faith (for experiential righteousness); as it is written, ‘But the righteous man shall live by faith’.”

Rom 6:17-18, “But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, 18and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.”

Satan is the accuser, but he cannot accuse the believer who is living a godly life in the power of the Spirit. The life we live either fortifies us against Satan’s attacks or makes it easier for him to defeat us, 2 Cor 6:1-10. By appropriating God’s righteousness, believers are to act righteously in their dealings with God and people. As a soldier’s breastplate protected his chest from enemy attacks, so sanctifying, righteous living, Rom 6:13; 14:17, guards believers’ hearts against the assaults of the devil, cf. Isa 59:17; James 4:7.

Righteousness is expressed by our actions; Christians thus confirm their relationship to God by living in it, Rom 6:13, 16ff.; 2 Cor 6:7; 9:10; Phil 1:11; 2 Tim 3:16. Indeed, our very lives testify to that relationship, Rom 1:17; 2:13. Having been freed from sin is to become “servants to God,” Rom 6:22, and “servants of righteousness,” Rom 6:18. God’s righteousness is revealed in the present, Rom 1:17; 3:26, and has provided true righteousness for the believer. Since righteousness is by faith alone, any supposed “righteousness by works,” i.e., obedience to the Law, has been abolished. The righteousness of God comes only through faith, Rom 1:17; 3:22,26; 4:3f.; 9:30; 10:4,6,10.

1 John 3:7, “Little children, let no one deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous.”

Our most significant defense is the evidence that we have been made right with God, and that this righteousness has been created in us by the Spirit. This righteousness is manifested in character and in conduct, and as the breastplate guards the vital organs from assault, it will keep the heart unwounded. Only the righteousness of Christ can enable the believer to stand before men, angels, and before God, but the heart that is to be protected should be a heart that is not condemning you. It is an awful condition to have sin in the life while we are trying to carry on the battle. We can never win it that way. Therefore, righteousness is to be put on. It is to be put on primarily by faith in the Word of God. It is given in Christ to simple belief. He that has faith thereby has the righteousness which is through faith in Christ, for in his faith, he has the one formative principle of reliance on God, which will gradually refine character and mold conduct into whatsoever things are lovely and of good report, however slowly it may transform his conduct. The faith which is a departure from all reliance on works of righteousness, which we have done, and is a singularly focused reliance on the work of Jesus Christ, opens the heart in which it is planted to all the influences of that life which was in Jesus, that from Him it may be in us.

Therefore, the putting on of the breastplate requires effort (pursuit), as well as faith, and effort will be vigorous in the measure in which faith is vivid, but it should follow, not precede or supplant faith. Moral teaching without Gospel preaching is little better than a waste of breath.

3. The Ability to be Blessed in Time and Eternity Because of Righteousness in UsUltimate Righteousness.

Because of the judicial imputation of Divine perfect righteousness to the believer at salvation, it allows God the Father the opportunity to provide the real imputation of blessings to the believer post-salvation. The real imputation of blessings includes both logistical grace blessings in time and the potential for greater grace blessings in both time and eternity. The potential for greater grace blessings is dependent on the believer walking in righteousness, Mat 6:33; Rom 8:17; 2 Cor 5:10; Gal 3:29; Eph 3:6; Titus 3:7; Heb 9:15; James 4:5-7; Rev 19:8.

To put it in a formulaic equation, we could say:

R1 (imputed righteousness at salvation) = B1 (logistical grace blessings in time and inherited blessings in eternity).

R1 + R2 (Experiential Righteousness post-salvation) = B2 (escrow blessing in time and eternity).

Mat 6:33, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

James 4:5-7, “Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: ‘He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us?’ 6But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, ‘GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.’ 7Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”

Titus 3:7, “So that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Heb 9:15, “For this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.”

2 Cor 5:10, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”

Rev 19:8, “It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”

All blessings come from what we call God’s “Grace Pipeline.” The judicial imputation of perfect righteousness establishes a “grace pipeline” by which God is able to bless the believer. This pipeline is encapsulated by the integrity of God, (His perfect righteousness and justice), and is motivated by His love.

On the giving end of the pipeline is the justice of God, the function of Divine integrity. On the receiving end is the perfect righteousness of God in you, the principle of Divine integrity. Grace is the policy of the justice of God in imputing blessings to the resident perfect righteousness of God in the believer.

Perfect righteousness demands perfect righteousness; perfect justice demands justice. Perfect God can only demand in man absolute perfection, which God provides. Therefore, the believer has perfect righteousness in his soul from the moment he is saved, and is capable of being blessed by God in both time and especially in eternity, because of the perfect righteousness in the believer.

God’s grace pipeline is always based on Divine perfection and righteousness. It is never based on human works, talent, or ability; it is never based on anything that emanates from the flesh, Rom 3:20‑26; 4:3‑12, 22-25; 9:30. Therefore, all blessings God provides are fair, just, equitable, and right.

As such, the imputation of perfect righteousness establishes the potential for great blessing in time, both logistical and escrow, as well as surpassing grace blessings in eternity, Eph 2:7.

Eph 2:7, “So that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”

“Logistical” means God’s provisions for your every need, both spiritual and physical, while here on earth. These blessings are given by God to the believer regardless of his faithfulness because of God’s righteousness in you.

2 Tim 2:13, “If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.” That is, He cannot deny His righteousness that is imputed to you, the believer.

The first blessings we receive are the 40 things God provides at the moment of salvation to execute the spiritual life. We are qualified to receive these because of the judicial imputation of God’s righteousness given to us at salvation, of which even that imputation is from His grace pipeline of God. They include:

The first blessings we receive are the 40+ Things God Provides at the Moment of Salvation to execute the spiritual life. We are qualified to receive these because of the judicial imputation of God’s righteousness given to us at salvation, of which even that imputation is from His grace pipeline of God. They include:

1. Efficacious grace, (GtHS makes our faith effective for salvation), Eph 1:13.
2. The sealing ministry of God the Holy Spirit, Eph 1:13-14; 4:30; 2 Cor 1:22.
3. An eternal inheritance, Rom 8:17; Gal 3:29; 4:6-7; Eph 1:14, 18; 3:6; Heb 9:15; 1 Peter 1:4; 3:7.
4. Regeneration, 2 Cor 1:22.
5. Eternal life, John 3:15-16; 10:28; 6:47; 1 John 5:11-13.
6. The imputed righteousness of God, Rom 3:22.
7. Resultant justification, Rom 3:28; Gal 2:16; Titus 3:7.
8. Reconciliation, Rom 5:10; 2 Cor 5:19; Col 1:20, 22.
9. Beneficiaries of propitiation, Rom 3:24-25; 1 John 2:2; 4:10.
10. Beneficiaries of unlimited atonement, 2 Cor 5:14-15, 19; 1 Tim 2:6; 4:10; Titus 2:11; Heb 2:9; 2 Pet 2:1; 1 John 2:2.
11. Beneficiaries of redemption, Rom 3:24; 1 Cor 1:30; Gal 3:13; Eph 1:7; Col 1:14; Titus 2:14; Heb 9:12-15; 1 Peter 1:18-19.
12. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit, 1 Cor 12:13; Gal 3:26-28.
13. Created a new spiritual species, 2 Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15.
14. Entered into the Royal Family of God via adoption forever, Eph 1:5; 1 Peter 2:9.
15. Equal privilege and equal opportunity of our election and predestination. (Equal privilege is provided in the royal priesthood; equal opportunity is provided in logistical grace), Gal 3:26-28; 6:15; Col. 3:9-11.
16. Positional Sanctification, being “in Christ,” Rom 6:2; 1 Cor 1:2, 30; 6:11; 2 Thes 2:13; Heb 2:11; 10:10, 14.
17. The asset of Election, Rom 8:33; Eph 1: 4; Col 3:12; 1 Thes 1:4; 2 Thes 2:13; 2 Tim 2: 10; 1 Peter 2:9; 5:13.
18. The asset of Predestination, Rom 8:29; Eph 1:5; 1 Peter 1:2.
19. The universal priesthood of the believer, 1 Peter 1:5,9; Rev 1:6; 5:10; 20:6.
20. The Royal Ambassadorship of the believer, 2 Cor 5:20.
21. The indwelling of God the Father, John 14:23; Eph 4:6; 2 John 9.
22. The indwelling of God the Son, John 14:20; 17:22-23; Rom 8:10; 2 Cor 13:5; Gal 2:20; Col 1:27; 1 John 2:24.
23. The indwelling of God the Holy Spirit, Rom 8:11; 1 Cor 3:16; 6:19-20; 2 Cor 6:16.
24. The unique availability of Divine power due to Their indwelling, Rom 1:16; 9:22-24; 15:13; 1 Cor 4:20; 2 Cor 4:7; 2 Tim 1:7.
25. The unique Pre-designed Plan of God, Eph 1:3-4.
26. The filling of the Holy Spirit, Eph 5:18; Gal 5:16; John 4:24; Acts 2:4; 4:8, 31; 6:3, 5; 7:55; 9:17; 13:9; 11:24; 13:52; Luke 1:15, 41, 67; 4:1; 1 John 1:7; Eph 5:1; 2 Cor 3:3; 2 Peter 1:4.
27. The distribution of spiritual gifts, 1 Cor 12:11.
28. All judgment removed, John 3:18; Rom 8:1; Heb 9:27-28.
29. Deliverance from the kingdom of Satan, Col 1:13a.
30. Transferred into the kingdom of God, Col 1:13b.
31. We are a gift from God the father to God the Son. We are a gift in that we are formed as the royal family of God, John 10:29; 17:2, 6, 9, 11, 24.
32. We are delivered from the power of the old sin nature, Rom 7-8; 2:29; Phil 3:3; Col 2:11.
33. We are given access to God in prayer, Rom 5:2; Eph 2:18; Heb 4:14, 16; 10:19-20.
34. All scar tissue is removed from the soul, Isa 43:25; 44:22.
35. Recipients of escrow blessings, Eph 1:3.
36. We are on a secure foundation, 1 Cor 3:11; 10:4; Eph 2:20.
37. We are related to God the Son by eight Biblical analogies:

a. The last Adam and the New Creation, 1 Cor 15:45; 2 Cor 5:17a.
b. The Head and the Body, Col 1:18a.
c. The Great Shepherd and the Sheep, Heb 13:20.
d. The True Vine and the Branches, John 15:5a.
e. The Chief Cornerstone and the Stones in the building, Eph 2:20; 1 Peter 2:5-6.
f. The Great High Priest and members of the Royal Priesthood, Heb 4:14a; 1 Peter 2:9a.
g. The Groom and the Bride, our wedding occurs at the Second Advent, Rev 19:7.
h. The King of Kings and the Royal Family of God, Rev 19:14-16.

38. Recipients of eternal security, John 10:28; Rom 8:32; 2 Tim 2:13; Gal 3:25; 1 Peter 1:5; 1 Cor 12:27.
39. Guaranteed a resurrection body forever, John 11:25; 1 John 3:2.
40. We have been glorified in Christ, John 17:22; Rom 8:17, 30.
41. Beneficiaries of the 11 Problem Solving Devices.

“Escrow” means, “an amount granted to somebody but held by a third party and only released after a specific condition has been met.” In regard to God the Father’s blessings it means, set aside in an account to be distributed later by Jesus Christ, the third party, when earned in time. That “later” includes both in time and in eternity at the BEMA seat of Jesus Christ after we receive our resurrection bodies, 1 Cor 3:10-15; 2 Cor 5:10; Rev 2-3.

As such, God’s escrow blessings, (B2), are only potential until they are linked with (R2); walking in righteousness by the application of Bible doctrine in your soul by means of faith through the filling of God the Holy Spirit. God’s Word and the Holy Spirit mixed with your non-meritorious faith produces your walk in righteousness, (R2), which results in (B2), blessings in time and eternity. And remember, we are qualified to receive B2 because of R1, the imputation of Divine Righteousness at the moment of salvation. We will see more of this below.

If God can impute His perfect righteousness to us at salvation (R1), which takes greater effort than blessing us (B1 and B2), then He can certainly bless us at the point when we produce Divine Good, John 15:2-16; Gal 5:22; Eph 5:9; Phil 1:11; Col 1:6-10, and reach spiritual maturity, which takes far less effort on God’s part. When God is able to bless us in any fashion, it becomes part of the glorification of God through our lives.

Phil 1:11, “Having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

Heb 12:11, “All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” (The blessing of Divine discipline in our lives can produce R2 in our lives that results in B2).

James 3:18, “And the seed whose fruit is righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.”

Eph 1:3, “Worthy of praise and glorification is God even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Christ.”

The blessings we can receive from God in time are part of the “all things” of Rom 8:28, 32.

Rom 8:32, “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”

These blessings include:

1. Spiritual blessings:

a.) Maximum capacity for love; occupation with Christ; capacity for life, love, happiness, and blessing; sharing the +H of God.

b.) The ability to cope with any disaster in life; freedom from slavery to circumstances of life.

c.) Ability to correctly interpret contemporary history and correctly evaluate current events in terms of the Word of God.

d.) Grace orientation, which is understanding and functioning under the grace principles in life.

e. ) Flexibility to adapt to the changing circumstances of life.

f.) Maximum function of the Royal Family Honor Code.

g.) A total sense of security in relationship to the Plan of God.

h.) Dying grace and a total preparation for death, having confidence in God’s place, manner, and time for your death.

2. Temporal blessing.

a.) Wealth, received or acquired.

b.) Success, prominence in one’s sphere of life, promotion.

c.) Prosperity socially, sexually, technically, culturally, professionally, mentally, and in the area of establishment.

d.) Leadership dynamics, the ability to assume authority apart from pseudo‑motivation and apart from emotional inspiration, plus stability of character.

e.) Good health is not in our genes, but a blessing from God.

The mature believer can expect some of these, though not necessarily all of them. Some people are not suited to certain kinds of special blessing.

3. Blessing by association. The mature believer is a blessing to those in his generation, both during his life and after his death, to those who were associated with him until their death. This is often why the wicked prosper. This can be illustrated by the pastor of a local church. No one exceeds their right pastor’s spiritual growth. Those in a congregation are blessed throughout their life by association with a mature pastor.

There are two categories of blessing by association: Direct blessing from God and indirect blessing from God, in which the believer shares his blessing, whether it is spiritual or material.

There are six areas of blessing by association:

a.) Spiritual periphery from association with mature believers in the local church.

b.) Personal periphery includes loved ones. When someone in the family reaches maturity, the rest of the family is blessed.

c.) Professional periphery can include schools, military organizations, teams, etc.

d.) Business periphery.

e.) Social periphery includes friends, clubs.

f.) Geographical periphery can include the city, state, or nation.

There is also a “heritage factor” of blessing by association. Blessing by association is perpetuated to those with whom the mature believer had association after his death until they die. This is why the wicked prosper, Jer 12:1. Even reversionists prosper, because they were associated with the mature believer. Prov 24:19, “Do not be jealous of the wicked.”

4. Historical blessing is the salt or pivot principle. If the pivot of mature believers is large enough, then the nation is preserved, blessing all who dwell in it.

5. Undeserved suffering. This suffering is designed to demonstrate the power and provision of God’s grace, 2 Cor 12:1‑10.

2 Cor 12:9, “And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.”

2 Cor 12:10, “Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Undeserved suffering teaches the value of Bible doctrine in the soul, Psa 119:67‑68, 71. It is designed to manifest the ministry of God the Holy Spirit, 2 Cor 4:8‑11, and put muscle on faith through the operation of the faith‑rest drill, to accelerate spiritual growth, and to keep the believer occupied with his eternal future, Rom 8:36; 5:3‑5.

6. Dying blessing. Dying grace terminates the life of the mature believer. The curse of death with its fear and pain is removed, causing it to become the greatest experience in life. Dying grace is the transition between the real imputation of blessing in time and the real imputation of blessing and reward in eternity. The mature believer has the best in life, something better in dying, and better than the best in eternity, Psa 116:15; Phil 1:21.

Psa 116:15, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His godly (mature) ones.”

Phil 1:21, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”

As far as the mature believer is concerned, God delivers him from death until it is time for him to die. Then He delivers him from the usual horrors of dying, Job 5:20; Psa 23:4; 33:19; 56:13; 116:8.

Psa 23:4, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”

God’s decision is based on prior knowledge of all the facts. The general characteristics of Christian death include:

a.) No appointment with judgment, Rom 8:1.

b.) Being face to face with God, 2 Cor 5:8.

c.) No more pain, sorrow, death, or tears, Rev 21:4.

d.) The anticipation of an inheritance which is incorruptible, undefiled, and cannot be lost, 1 Pet 1:4‑5.

e.) A new home in heaven, John 14:1‑6.

f.) The reality of eternal life, 1 John 5:11‑12. We do not have the reality of eternal life until our soul is outside the body and in the presence of the Lord.

g.) Death is a promotion and gain, Phil 1:21.

h.) Death is a victory, 1 Cor 15:55‑58.

7. Next, we see in Scripture that there are escrow blessings from God in eternity. This is the imputation of Divine blessing in the eternal state that provides motivation to the believer in time. This is what we call “Hope Three,” confident anticipation of blessing at the BEMA or Judgment Seat of Jesus Christ, 2 Cor 5:10; 1 Cor 3:10-15.

The mature believer has a special confidence, knowing that he will receive the seventh imputation of blessings from the justice of God to the resurrection body. This is the confidence throughout the rest of the mature believer’s lifetime. It is a fantastic confidence. Heb 11:13, describes it as saluting eternity as you cross the high golden bridge. It is a reality of eternity while still alive.

Rom 5:1-2, “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God.”

Rom 12:12a, “Rejoicing in hope (3).”

Col 1:5, “Because of the hope laid up for you in heaven, of which you previously heard in the word of truth, the gospel.”

Titus 2:13, “Looking for the blessed hope, (this is not the Rapture but the imputation of eternal blessing which glorifies God forever), and appearing of the glory of the great God, even our Savior Christ Jesus.”This was Font/Pitch 2,12 – Off.Note:  The change to pitch (12) and font (1) must be converted manually.

1 Peter 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope (3) through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” Cf. Heb 6:19‑20; 1 John 3:2‑3.

This is the imputation from the justice of God of our eternal escrow blessings and rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ. The Judgment Seat of Christ occurs right after the Rapture while the seven years of the great Tribulation are occurring on the earth. Jesus Christ will be the judge of all Church Age believers at His judgment seat.

John 5:22, “But not even the Father judges anyone, but He has delegated all judgment to the Son.”

This explains 2 Cor 5:10, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.” Cf. Rom 14:10.

There are, Four Categories of Rewards Mentioned in Scripture, in addition to those mentioned in Rev 2-3.

1. Cities, Luke 19:13‑26. Some believers will rule cities during the Millennium.

2. A special city, Heb 11:10, 13, 16; Rev 21:2, 10‑11.

3. Analogy to the harvest, Mat 13:3‑9, 18‑23.

4. Crowns.

a.) The Crown of Righteousness, 2 Tim 4:7-8, which is given for the fulfillment of perfect righteousness in time, i.e., receiving the imputation of special blessings to the mature believer. On the basis of “faithful service,” the crown of righteousness is granted, “to all who have loved His appearing.”

2 Tim 4:7-8, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; 8in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.”

b.) The Crown of Life, James 1:12; Rev 2:10, is given to those who advance in the spiritual life. The Crown of Life is given for living the spiritual life inside GPS bringing maximum glorification to God. It is awarded to invisible heroes for maximum production of divine good through the execution of the Plan of God with emphasis on invisible impact while persevering under trial.

James 1:12, “Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”

c.) The Crown of Rejoicing, Phil 4:1; 1 Thes 2:19, is for the believer who wins souls for the Lord.

d.) The Crown of Glory, 1 Peter 5:1-4, is the crown for the believer who is willing to feed the flock of God.

e.) The Order of The Morning Star, 1 Cor 4:8; 2 Tim 2:12; Rev 2:26-28; 5:10. This is a reward of rulership with the Lord in eternity.

Conclusion

Therefore, just as there are two components to “Truth” that we are to gird our loins with: 1) Truth that is God, His attribute, and 2) Truth that is His Word resident within your soul, there are two aspects of righteousness that protect us, 1) The imputation of God’s righteousness at the moment of salvation that gives us a right standing with God, and 2) The experiential righteousness of the moral high ground we take by means of the intake and application of God’s Word that results in in the deeds we perform in faith; Experiential Sanctification resulting in Divine good production. In addition, we also have the blessed hope of blessings and rewards in time and eternity because of the imputed righteousness of God that is able to be blessed, especially when we walk in God’s righteousness, R1 = B1, and R1 + R2 = B2. Each component of “R” is part of the breastplate we are to put on, as well as the confident expectation of being blessed because of the righteousness in us and performed by us.

“The breastplate of righteousness is our defense against evil. The opposition to temptation is best carried on by the positive cultivation of good. A habit of righteous conduct is itself a defense against temptation. Untilled fields bear abundant weeds. The used tool does not rust, nor the running water gathers scum. The robe of righteousness will guard the heart as effectually as a coat of mail. The positive employment with good weakens temptation, and arms us against evil. But so long as we are here our righteousness must be militant, and we must be content to live ever armed to meet the enemy which is always hanging round us, and watching for an opportunity to strike. The time will come when we shall put off the breastplate and put on the fine linen ‘clean and white,’ which is the heavenly and final form of the righteousness of Saints.” (Expositions of Holy Scripture)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Click Here for Part 4, (vs. 15-16). The study includes:

Exegesis of Ephesians 6:15-16

Stand in Warfare – 6:10-20The Equipment:

E. The Believer’s Walk in Warfare; God’s Provision for His Children’s Spiritual Battles, Eph 6:10-20.

1. The Exhortation to Arms, The Believer’s Warfare, Eph 6:10-13.

d.) The Warrior’s Resource, The Explanation of Our Armor, Eph 6:13–17.

  • The Doctrine of The Armor of God (continued)
  • The Doctrine of Truth
  • Attributes of God
  • The Doctrine of Righteousness
  • 40+ Things We Receive at the Moment of Salvation
  • Blessings & Rewards for the Believer / Crowns
  • The Doctrine of Feet
  • The Doctrine of The Gospel
  • Witnessing
  • The Doctrine of Hindrances to the Gospel
  • False System of Salvation
  • The Doctrine of Faith
  • The Doctrine of Flaming Missiles / Arrows

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