Ephesians 6, 13-14
Something to read
Therefore take up the whole armour of God, so that you may be able to withstand on that evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand therefore, and fasten the belt of truth around your waist, and put on the breastplate of righteousness.
New Revised Standard Version
To read the King James Version, click here
Something to think about
Standing firm when being battered is no easy task. But having decent protection certainly helps. Paul may well have been reflecting on the uniform that the Roman soldiers who guarded him in prison wore in parades, and in battle.
He knew every part of the armour mattered. But human armour was not to be Paul’s protection – for him, truth protected his midriff and righteousness (God’s righteousness or justice) protected his heart.
The followers of Christ are called to be peacemakers, but this is not a passive task. It requires effort, even ‘battling’.
Truth and justice are vital protections for us in this ‘battle’. We stand firm by holding fast to the truth; the truth of God, his reality, his love, his grace, his faithfulness. We stand firm by holding fast to justice, God’s justice.
In striving to end poverty, to see justice happening in our trading systems, to see corruption ended, we will know we are in a struggle.
We will be told we are dreamers who don’t live in the real world. The truth is God’s justice will come, we need to stand firm to see it happen.
Something to do
Take time to mentally imagine dressing yourself with truth, justice, peace, etc.
Something to pray
Lord Jesus, you stand firm in the face of opposition, in the suffering of the Cross. Help us stand firm for your truth.
Today’s contributor is the Rt Rev Paul Butler, the Bishop of Durham, who previously served as the Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham.