Spiritual Armor: Shoes of Preparation

I. The Christian soldier must be spiritually armed.

A. The Truth Belt is the initial piece.

1. It involves, of course, a knowledge of the Word of God (John 17:17)

2. It involves “doing” the Truth (1 John 1:6-7)

B. The Breastplate of Righteousness must be put on.

1. It is the “new man” of holiness (Ephesians 4:24)

2. It is the “abiding” in God that secures righteousness (1 John 3:5-10)

C. The Breastplate is also a active righteous lifestyle (Isaiah 59:17)

1. We must flee the non-righteous and follow the righteous (1 Timothy 6:11)

2. We must separate from worldly associations (2 Corinthians 6:14-18)

3. We must “yield” to being an “instrument” of righteousness (Romans 6:13-22)

4. We must “awake” to righteousness and actively refrain from evil (1 Corinthians 15:33-34)

II. The “Shoes of Preparation” are an important “armor piece.”

A. Shoes are sometimes seen as “humble” and “ordinary.”

1. Scripture uses the shoe as a negligible thing (Psalm 60:8)

2. Scripture treats the shoe in a shameful way (Deuteronomy 25:9-10)

3. Scripture suggests that shoes are sometimes unworthy (Exodus 3:5)

B. Shoes are sometimes recognized as important and necessary.

1. The Apostles must take shoes on their journey (Mark 6:7-13)

2. The Angel instructed Peter to put on his shoes (Acts 12:5-17)

3. The tribe of Asher was prophesied to have shoes of “iron and brass” that would give them strength (Deuteronomy 33:24-25).

C. Shoes for the soldier are vital (Ephesians 6:15).

1. Feet without shoes make “standing” very difficult.

2. Feet without solid shoes make for poor infantry maneuvering.

3. Feet improperly shod increase the possibly of injury.

4. Feet injured in battle usually incapacitate the soldier.

III. The “Preparation” of the shoes is stressed for the spiritual soldier.

A. Preparation requires “cleansing” of relationships (2 Timothy 2:20-21)

1. There are “vessels” of dishonor in a “great house”

2. There are “fowls of the air” in a great “tree” (Mark 4:30-32)

3. There must be a purging of the “old leaven” (1 Corinthians 5:7)

4. There are significant results from a conscious spiritual purge.

a. One becomes a “vessel of honor”
b. One becomes suitable “for the masters use”
c. One becomes prepared “for every good work”

B. Preparation requires being “ready always” (1 Peter 3:15)

1. One must first “sanctify” God in their heart.

a. This requires submission to the Scriptures (John 17:17-19)
b. This requires control by the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:16)

2. One must be ready to “give an answer”

a. This the “defense and confirmation” of the message (Philippians 1:7, 17)
b. This must have “reason” from discernment and use (Hebrews 5:14)

3. One must answer with “meekness and fear”

a. The wise man has the “meekness of wisdom” (James 3:13)
b. The “chaste conversation” is coupled with fear (1 Peter 3:2)

C. Preparation focuses on the “Gospel of peace”

1. This phrase is used in Romans 10:15

a. This is a quotation from Isaiah 52:7
b. This also refers to Nahum 1:15

2. This was based on the prophecy from Isaiah 61:1-3

a. Jesus claimed to be the fulfillment of this passage
b. Jesus quoted this in his first sermon (Luke 4:16-21)

IV. The “gospel” is the “material” that makes the “shoes” important (Romans 1:16)

A. The Greek terms are important to understand.

1. The basic word is euanglion – “good message.”

2. The various derivatives (verb, adjective, etc) all are similar.

a. The “eu” is the prefix for “good.”
b. The “angelion” is derived from angelos = “angel”
c. The “angelos” translates “one sent with a message”

3. The various renderings of the several derivatives are:

a. “Preach the gospel”
b. “Give good tidings”
c. “Bring glad tidings”
d. And, of course, simply “the gospel.”

B. The translation “the gospel” appears 101 times in the New Testament.

1. The CENTRAL reference is 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

a. This is the DEFFINITION passage for the Gospel
b. The central focus: the death, physical burial, and bodily resurrection
1) It is to be “received” and “Believed” by faith, once for all
2) It is the means by which we are “saved” continually and forever
2) It is the fact upon which we firmly “stand”
4) It is emphatically to be defined, understood and preached “according to the Scriptures.”

2. The FIRST OCCURANCE is in Matthew 4:23 - Jesus came “preaching the gospel of the kingdom.”

a. It is vital to stress the final consummation
b. It is when Christ will finally be acknowledged by every creation to be: “KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS” (Revelation 14:7)

3. The LAST OCCURANCE is in Revelation 14:6 – “the everlasting gospel”

a. It must be preached to all nations
b. It emphasizes “worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.”

C. The gospel entails the FULL SCOPE of the work of Jesus Christ involving the whole sweep of his redemptive purpose in history.

1. It is expressed in Colossians 1:16-20

a. By him were all things created
b. By him all things consist (or are saved)
c. By him all things are reconciled

2. It is expressed in Hebrews 1:2

a. He made the worlds
b. He is upholding all things
c. He becomes heir of all things

3. It is expressed in Romans 11:36

a. For of Him . .
b. And through Him …
c. And to him … are all things
d. To Him be glory for ever. Amen.

D. The Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ encompasses the three-fold work of Christ

1. There is the Creation, the Conservation, and the Consummation

2. There is the Past, the Present, and the Future

a. Neglect the creation – there is no foundation or ability
b. Neglect the Cross – there is no power or authority
c. Neglect the coming Kingdom – there is no hope or joy

E. The “preparation of the gospel of peace” requires more than a mere acquaintance with a programmed pitch.

1. It ultimately involves “teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:20)

2. It ultimately involves declaring “all the counsel of God” (Acts 20:27)



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