Resisting the Devil
A Sermon on Ephesians 6:14
14Stand firm therefore, having belted your waist with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness,
14Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
Temptation is a constant trap that the devil puts in the path of Christians. Satan is constantly prowling around as he tries to convince Christians into crediting their salvation to the binding of rules and regulations. He twists and distorts the truth of the gospel by making the Christian think that they are still under the power and dominion of sin. How then do Christians turn away from these temptations? In this sermon on Ephesians 6:14 titled “Resisting the Devil,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains that the weapon to use against temptation is the breastplate of righteousness. He points out in Scripture how the breastplate of righteousness is a reminder that the old self has been crucified with Christ, resulting in liberation from the laws and regulations they were bound to before. In Dr. Lloyd-Jones’s words, Christians no longer live a good life to become a Christian, but rather because they are a Christian. Not only are they liberated from the old law, but also from the dominion and power of sin. Sin and evil no longer rule them. Christians are now ruled by the power and dominion of God. The breastplate of righteousness helps them resist the devil by realizing that his temptations and traps no longer have power over them.
- The apostle Paul is dealing with the importance of realizing we are engaged in spiritual warfare against the devil and his forces.
- To stand against this enemy, we must put on the whole armor of God, which God provides. This includes the breastplate of righteousness.
- The breastplate covers our heart, seat of affections and will. It must be guarded against the enemy.
- Righteousness here refers to the righteousness of Christ given to us, not our own. It is a gift given to us and worked in us.
- The breastplate gives us confidence, helps us withstand discouragement and condemnation, and defends against temptation.
- We must beware of a false asceticism that believes righteousness comes through strict rules and self-denial. True righteousness is living out the truth of who we are in Christ.
- We must realize the old man is dead, crucified with Christ. We are no longer in Adam but in Christ. This is key to victory.
- We must realize we are no longer in the kingdom of Satan but have been delivered from his power. We can resist him.
- We must realize we are dead to sin, no longer under its dominion. Sin shall not rule over us. We are in the realm of the Spirit.
- We must realize we are dead to the law, not trying to justify ourselves. We are made righteous in Christ, not by the law. The law only brings death.
- We live the good life not to become Christians but because we are Christians. We keep clean the robe of righteousness Christ has put on us.
The Book of Ephesians
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.