“…and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints…” Ephesians 6:17b-18
These two verses that we’re going to study today are among my favorite in the entire book of Ephesians. Have I made that claim before? Well, I think it’s safe to say at this point that I have fallen head over heels in love with Paul’s words to the church in Ephesus. I never knew how much one book in Scripture could mark me and capture my heart, but this one certainly has, and these two short verses have become verses that I live by. These two verses have entirely changed my approach to prayer. These two verses have gotten me on my knees more times than I can count. These two verses have shaped my faith.
This week in our study of the armor of God, we have learned that God has equipped us to be victorious in this spiritual battle by giving us these pieces of spiritual armor to protect ourselves: the belt, the breastplate, shoes, the shield, and the helmet. The common denominator that these pieces share is that they all serve as a safeguard for the soldier from the attacks of the enemy. They are all defensive in nature. Here in Ephesians 6:17-18, however, we are given two offensive pieces, weapons to fight with in this battle. Perhaps, there is only one that seems to stand out to you in our passage today. Take a closer look. We all probably take notice of the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God, but what is the second weapon that we are given?
It was a few years ago now when I first learned of the powerful and effective combination of praying God’s Word – infusing Scripture into my prayers and praying God’s Word right back to Him. I knew there was power in the Word, and I knew there was power in prayer. I had never thought to combine them together, though. When we pray God’s Word over our situation, it is like lighting a stick of dynamite and throwing it at our enemy. It’s a force he simply cannot withstand. Whatever power the enemy has, it doesn’t stand a chance against God’s Word.
Take a moment to read 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 right now. How does verse four describe the weapons that we have been given?
What I find to be so interesting about this passage in 2 Corinthians is that it is a cross-reference for Ephesians 6:17-18, meaning that the weapons (plural) that are mentioned in 2 Corinthians 10 are the same weapons that we read of in Ephesians 6:17-18: God’s Word and prayer. Both have tremendous power, but when we couple them together, strongholds are demolished. Chains are broken. Prisoners are set free. The enemy is defeated. We are victorious.
I have walked with the Lord for too long now to sit back, content in my own freedom while far too many remain bound. Hear the truth of God’s Word spoken over you, today:
Your Heavenly Father goes before you in battle, and He is your rear guard. Jesus conquered sin and death, and He has positioned you on the victorious side with Him. Christ has clothed you with armor to protect you in this war for souls. He has given you a mighty weapon, a sword, which is His Word, and He has commanded you to use it and to persevere in prayer. Lift your sword, and raise your voice. Know the Word, and wield your sword! Declare the power of God’s Word over the battle that rages in your life today. Get on your knees and pray. This is where our strength is found. Lean into the power of Christ. Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on your armor, and pray God’s Word.