The Armor of God
10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and …
10Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against …
How does the devil operate against individuals in the church? It is important to know the wiles of the enemy to become better equipped in spiritual warfare against him. In this sermon on Ephesians 6:10–13 titled “Watchfulness,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones notes the absence of literature that recognizes the devil for what he does. He provides a couple examples from history that properly reveal the wiles of the devil, such as Pilgrim’s Progress by Paul Bunyan and Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. Resources like these come alongside Scripture to help the Christian watch carefully. That being said, there is no substitute for consistent prayer rooted in Scripture and accompanied by self-examination. These essentials help defend the three main lines of attack: mind, experience, and behavior. The devil produces an error of imbalance somewhere in the three so that Christians either do too much or too little to recover. Dr. Lloyd-Jones draws out the dangers of over-emphasizing in these areas leading to intellectualism, emotionalism, or pragmatism. The solution that he offers his listeners for perfect balance comes from a true view of the gospel. Christians must submit to God’s way of delivering them wholly and completely, through mind, experience, and behavior.
- The apostle Paul warns the Ephesians against the wiles of the devil in Ephesians 6:10-13.
- The devil exercises his wiles in a general way by producing states and conditions in the church, such as heretical movements, apostasy, and schism. He also exercises his wiles in a particular, personal, and individual way.
- We must watch, read the Bible, pray, and examine ourselves to stand against the wiles of the devil. Failure to do so gives the devil an opening.
- The devil attacks along the lines of the mind, experience, and practice. He produces a lack of balance between them or makes us give too much or too little attention to each one.
- Lack of balance between the mind, experience, and practice shows a failure to see their relationship and submit to God's way of dealing with people. God saves the whole person.
- Failure to have balance brings the gospel into disrepute and detracts from the glory of God. The Christian knows, feels, and does.
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.