Armor, Not Complacency

“The Lord is the ultimate fashion designer! His armor is untouchable. It never comes off, never goes out of style. Anyone or anything that tries to come up against it will lose. God dressed me in this armor and it has saved me!” – From my book My Climb

We live in a fallen world. It has been that way since the beginning of mankind (Genesis 3). Humans are destined to sin, but we have hope! The Lord has given us armor to do battle through spiritual warfare. We have seen and heard numerous stories of Christians who have fought in the name of God. One is the story of a little man by the name of Telemachus. As reported in Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, it’s an amazing story of extreme courage in the face of evil.

Telemachus was a Christian monk who, in 391 CE, went on a pilgrimage to Rome. While there, he noticed crowds flocking to the Colosseum to see gladiators do battle. He followed them in, only to witness a sight that repulsed him. Telemachus watched with horror as people died, battles raged, and the crowds cheered. Prompted into action, this bald-headed, robed figure found his way onto the arena floor. He ran toward two gladiators locked in battle, grabbed one of them, and pulled him away. He exhorted the two gladiators to abandon their murderous sport. He appealed to the crowd to not to break God’s law by murdering.

The response was anything but favorable. Angry voices drowned out Telemachus’, demanding that the spectacle continue. The gladiators prepared to do battle again, but Telemachus stood between them, holding them apart and urging them to reconsider. Driven by the anger of the crowd and their rage at Telemachus’ interference, the gladiators cut Telemachus to the ground as the crowd threw objects at him. Telemachus was killed. But in 405, Emperor Honorius declared gladiatorial battles were to end at the Colosseum. Tradition tells us that it was Telemachus’ brave protest that helped sway the Emperor’s decision.

This particular story has a bittersweet ending. Telemachus died, but not in vain. He was able to influence the discontinuation of the gladiator games. This was a significant ending to a horrible tradition, a wonderful example of good vs. evil (spiritual warfare) where the “hero” wins in the end.

Nevertheless, we continue to fight many battles today. We are surrounded by our culture’s “norms” and acceptable behaviors. Underlining agendas are being pushed on us and our children and we tend to feel hopeless. Sometimes it’s a daily struggle just to watch the news. Yet Scripture encourages us to equip ourselves in order to fight these spiritual wars. “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.” (Ephesians 6:13)

My wonderful pastor once said, “Yes, spiritual warfare is fought by us any time we live the gospel into this world. We wage it not just in prayer but when we choose Jesus ways over the world’s ways.”

Here’s a question we should ask ourselves everyday: are we choosing God’s ways over the world’s influences? Or are we becoming tolerant of the morals of our culture and getting too comfortable under our blanket of complacency? The Bible warns that if we become “lukewarm” in our spirituality, the Lord will spew us out of His mouth! (Revelation 3:16) Those are some strong words coming from our Heavenly Father. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to avoid being complacent in my faith!

I challenge you to start your day by humbly going before the Lord and asking Him to equip you with His armor in order to stand courageously to fight the spiritual battles before you – and to shine Christ’s love to everyone who comes into your path. Pray to be anchored in the hope that He will use you to touch someone else’s life and help change the moral direction of this culture. You can make a difference through Him!

1 Comment

  1. Sharon Holland

    Standing up for the faith provides the true answer to all things however we suffer a lot because we do In the end it will all be worth it

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