Last week we introduced our new series on the full armor of God as found in Ephesians 6:10-20, and its importance to our lives and our marriages. This week we want to begin looking at the pieces of armor, what they represent, and how God uses them to help us have strong marriages that glorify Him.
“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist.” – Ephesians 6:14
We fight a spiritual battle we must be ready for and fight every day. It is a battle we cannot win on our own. Satan is a powerful foe, but not all-powerful. If we have given our lives to Christ, we have the all-powerful God on our side. Remember 1 John 4:4: “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
The blessing is that God provides us with the armor and the weapons we need to not only fight, but to win the battle. God’s Word tells us about the armor He has put at our disposal. And we must put on each piece every day.
The Piece that Holds Everything Together
When Satan attacks our marriages, God’s armor will allow us “to stand [our] ground” (Ephesians 6:13). The first piece is found in Ephesians 6:14: “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist.” The belt of truth holds everything together and in place, and our weapons hang on it.
Satan’s first attack will come on the truth of God and His Word. Jesus is God and the truth. He affirmed this in 1 John 4:6-7: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
Jesus also confirmed that God’s Word is completely true and trustworthy. He prayed for His disciples (and for us) in the Garden of Gethsemane, just before going to the cross. He prayed in John 17:17: “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.”
We wear this belt of truth when Christ is our Savior, and when we study, know, and live by His Word.
Satan Tries to Get Us to Question the Truth
Satan will always attack the truth. Look back to how Satan tempted Eve in the Garden of Eden.
God told Adam and Eve:“You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die” (Genesis 2:16-17).
Satan tempts Eve to question God’s truth first by asking her: “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1). Then Satan moves Eve from temptation to sin with the lie: “’You will not certainly die,’ the serpent said to the woman. ‘For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil'” (Genesis 3:4).
Satan’s schemes have not changed. Jesus warns us in John 8:44: “He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” He will attack us and our marriages in the same way he did Eve.
Satan will try to convince us that surely God didn’t mean our situation.
We husbands will convince ourselves that we have been so badly sinned against by our wives that God’s words in Ephesians 4:30-32 don’t apply in this case. I know Paul writes: “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” But Paul wasn’t in my shoes. Not forgiving in this case won’t grieve the Holy Spirit, will it?
Satan will say to you wives, “Did God really mean these words for you in your circumstance?”: “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity” (Colossians 3:12-14).
Satan will lie and tell you both–husbands and wives–that Jesus didn’t expect you to apply these words to every situation: “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15).
The command to forgive is just one of the areas Satan will attack us. He will constantly try to get us to question God and His Word, especially in our unique situations. This is why we must always be on our guard with all the armor God has given us.
Know and Live by God’s Truth
The belt of truth is described and instruction given in Proverbs 30:5-6: “Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.”
The only way to effectively fight Satan’s lies is with God’s truth. When we put our trust in God and His absolute truth, Satan cannot defeat us and lead us astray. That is why we must be reading and studying God’s Word–His truth–for ourselves every day. It is why we must study His Word–His truth–together as a couple regularly. It is why Sabra and I developed Couple Connect for us to do just that. And it is why we share it with you and encourage you to use it as well. (You can download our free ebook here: Couple Connect – A Simple Weekly Plan to Stay Close for a Lifetime.)
So let’s live with the belt of truth buckled around our waist every day. It will hold us together when temptations come and the enemy attacks. God’s Word–His Truth–will allow us to stand firm and be victorious. It will protect us, and with each battle won we will see our marriages grow stronger.
Questions for Discussion
- Read this week’s teaching. Make sure you read all the Scripture passages carefully. What are some truths you can apply to your marriage this week?
- Do you find it hard to trust God at His Word at times? Do you find it hard to believe and live by His Word? What do you do when you find it difficult? Is there something in His Word you’re struggling to trust right now? Share it with your spouse, and ask him or her to pray with you, and ask God to give you the faith you need. Pray the prayer of the man who had brought his son to Jesus for healing when he said to Jesus in Mark 9:24: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief’”
- How important is truth to your marriage? Give reasons for the answer you gave.
- If truth is a belt that holds everything together, how does truth hold a marriage together?
- Jesus spoke to the Jews, and said the following to those who wanted to follow Him in John 8:31-32: “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” What is He saying here? What “truth” is He referring to? How does it set us free?
Next week we will discuss the second piece of the full armor God gives us and see how it impacts our marriages.
Until then, may God bless you in all His wonderful ways,
Other posts in the PROTECTING YOUR MARRIAGE WITH THE ARMOR OF GOD series:
Part 1–We’re in a Battle
Part 3–The Breastplate of Righteousness
Part 4–The Shoes of God’s Peace
Part 5–The Shield of Faith
Part 6–The Helmet of Salvation
Part 7–The Sword of the Spirit
Part 8–The Power of Prayer
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Header photo by 89758 via pixabay (CC0), cropped/text added.