Kneel Day 10 Why God?: Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper Days

Finding the original intent of Scripture and making good application to our everyday lives as we become equipped to correctly handle the Word of Truth!

Today is 2-for-1 Friday!
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The Questions

1) What comes against us in this life? (verse 12)


2) What are the commands of God to us as we face spiritual warfare? (verses 14-18)


3) What outcomes are we promised as we stand and take up the armor of God? (verses 11, 13, and 16)

Ephesians 6:10-20

10 Finally, be strengthened by the Lord and by his vast strength. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens. 13 For this reason take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having prepared everything, to take your stand. 14 Stand, therefore, with truth like a belt around your waist, righteousness like armor on your chest, 15 and your feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace. 16 In every situation take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit—which is the word of God. 18 Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request and stay alert with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints. 19 Pray also for me, that the message may be given to me when I open my mouth to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel. 20 For this I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I might be bold enough to speak about it as I should.

Original Intent

1) What comes against us in this life? (verse 12)
Paul warns we will face the devil’s schemes. Schemes, also translated “wiles”, means cunning deceit, craftiness, or trickery. It has the connotation of someone lying in wait to ensnare or attack a targeted victim. In Ephesians 6:11, Satan is called the devil, who is described as cunning in Genesis 3:1. Together, devil and schemes warn us of Satan’s tactics to deceive us, often by blatantly attacking another’s character, namely, God’s. In the Garden of Eden, the devil questioned Eve by asking, “Did God really say, ‘You can’t eat from any tree in the garden’?”. (Genesis 3:1, emphasis mine) In truth, God hadn’t actually said they couldn’t eat from “any tree”, only the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil was forbidden. (Genesis 2:17) With cunning, Satan manipulates truth for his own deceptive purposes, “No! You will certainly not die,” the serpent said to the woman. “In fact, God knows that when you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:4-5) Satan systematically destroys Eve’s trust in God and His Word by slandering God’s character. Part of Satan’s scheming against us involves what Paul describes as “the rulers, the authorities, the cosmic powers of this darkness, [and] evil, spiritual forces in the heavens.” (verse 12) Each of these terms address the qualities and powers of fallen angels, demons, who do Satan’s bidding. The rulers are the leaders of highest rank among the devil and his angels. The “cosmic powers of darkness” refer to the specific power held by Satan and his demons. Darkness refers to all aspects opposing the Holy Light of God and the accompanying ungodliness and immorality. Evil spiritual forces directly reference the devil and his angels whose purpose is to “steal, kill, and destroy.” (John 10:10)

2) What are the commands of God to us as we face spiritual warfare? (verses 14-18)
We might feel overwhelmed considering Satan’s tactics, power, and deception which he wields against us, his targets! If this were the end of the story, it would be grim and cause for fear, despair, and hopelessness. But, God, in His Word, encourages us and gives us hope that is far more solid and eternal than any of Satan’s schemes. We are not alone in this battle, for God has given us His armor, teaching us how to effectively face spiritual warfare and overcome evil. First, we are to be strengthened by God’s vast strength. Note this isn’t about our ability, but entirely His! Neither is this a given, we have a choice to be strengthened by God or hopelessly flail on our own. In 2 Corinthians 12:9, we are reminded that God’s strength is made perfect (or displayed perfectly) in our weakness. We will never succeed in fighting spiritual battles in our strength. Instead, victory is won when we choose to be strengthened by God’s vast strength. The terms here speak of God’s dominion. This warfare isn’t a battle of “forces”, where we hope Good wins. Satan’s power is as nothing compared to God’s infinite omnipotence. Satan may be more powerful than man, but God is more powerful than anything or anyone. His dominion is supreme. All ability to overcome evil belongs to Him alone. Step one of spiritual battle will always involve surrendering our weakness to His strength. Following this, we are to 1) put on God’s full armor, 2) stand firm, and 3) pray. God has specific action steps He calls us to do when we face spiritual warfare; all of these things stem from His strength and dominion, not ours.

3) What outcomes are we promised as we stand and take up the armor of God? (verses 11, 13, and 16)
We find two specific promises to believers in Jesus embedded in Paul’s letter to the Ephesian church. With great comfort, we are told we will be able to resist Satan’s schemes in the evil day. This “day of evil” refers to the period of time before Christ returns and His righteousness will reign for eternity and sin and Satan will be eternally destroyed. That day is coming, but for now, in the “day of evil” when the prince of this world rules (John 14:30), we experience the consequence of sin like toil, pain, disease, annoyances, peril, persecution, and brokenness of all forms. Paul encourages us by giving God’s promise of endurance and our ability to resist evil if we take up the whole armor of God. (verse 11) Secondly, God promises we will be able to extinguish all flaming arrows of the evil one. (verse 16) The Evil One mentioned is a term for Satan that highlights his intentionally vicious and hateful character. His flaming darts have often been understood to be the temptations that fly at us. When we succumb to temptation, the damage of our sin continues past the initial impact, spreading injury and destruction in the same way an uncontrolled fire ravages its surroundings. We are promised we will be able to extinguish all the fiery darts aimed at us; not some, but all.

Everyday Application

1) What comes against us in this life? (verse 12)
Jesus told us, “I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.” (Acts 16:33, emphasis mine) As Christ-followers, we are promised oppression, persecution, and suffering, but we are also promised eternal victory in Christ and His constant presence in our pressing. In 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 Paul reminds us, “We are afflicted in every way but not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair; we are persecuted but not abandoned; we are struck down but not destroyed.” God does not leave us in our trials. James reminds us we will face many trials in following Jesus, but these struggles are permitted by God for our good. God divinely uses our suffering to provide endurance leading to maturity. (James 1:2-4) Similarly, Romans 5:3-5 reminds, “We know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope. This hope will not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” Every challenge we face is meant for our growth in Christlikeness to the ultimate glory of God. (Romans 8:28-29) Peter warned that Satan prowls like a lion seeking victims to devour. (1 Peter 5:8) We are to be alert and aware of our foe, his schemes, and his tactic to slander God and those who trust Him. Our enemy is not other people, it’s Satan himself. (verse 12) How often are we upset at others? We might blame, fight, and hold grudges, but our true battle is not against flesh and blood. When we are distracted by human conflict, we lose sight of our real enemy. In so doing, we give the devil an opportunity to tear us, and them, down.

2) What are the commands of God to us as we face spiritual warfare? (verses 14-18)
Putting on the full armor of God includes binding truth like a belt around our waist, fitting righteousness over our hearts, sandaling feet with readiness to preach Christ, taking up the shield of faith, protecting our heads with the helmet of salvation, and unsheathing our single weapon, the sword of the Spirit. Each of these protect us against Satan’s schemes and temptations. Unshakeable truth, Christ’s righteousness over us, the gospel of God’s reconciling peace, faith in the triune God, salvation, and the living Word of God all provide specific, God-ordained protection for believers in Jesus. Paul also includes a quite unexpected battle tactic from the Lord, standing firm. The Greek word implies immoveable persistence and steadfast of mind. Where does most spiritual warfare occur? In the mind. We are fed doubts, deception, and slander leading us into temptation. The battlefield for our hearts is often waged in our mind. Victory is won by standing firm and remaining steadfast in our mind. Paul urges, “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3:2) The author of Hebrews instructs us to “keep(ing) our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.” (Hebrews 12:2) In Philippians 4:8, Paul provides a list of good things to dwell on including whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, morally excellent, and praiseworthy. When our mind is steadfast on God and His goodness, we will not fall prey to temptation, and we will win spiritual battles. Finally, Paul instructs us to pray at all times with all requests. (verse 18) We are to pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17), pray with thanksgiving (Philippians 4:6), pray with faith (Mark 11:24), and pray confidently knowing God hears and answers (1 John 5:14-15).

3) What outcomes are we promised as we stand and take up the armor of God? (verses 11, 13, and 16)
Consider these verses in Romans 8:31-39. Read them slowly, prayerfully asking the Lord to plant these truths within you as you face spiritual battles and fiery darts of temptation. “What, then, are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He did not even spare his own Son but gave him up for us all. How will he not also with him grant us everything? Who can bring an accusation against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies. Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is the one who died, but even more, has been raised; he also is at the right hand of God and intercedes for us. Who can separate us from the love of Christ? Can affliction or distress or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: Because of you we are being put to death all day long; we are counted as sheep to be slaughtered. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Satan cannot separate us from the love of God. None can. Despite his incessant accusations and slandering, he cannot bring a charge against us. God has justified us, declaring us righteous. He strengthens us, enabling us to endure hardship, temptation, and spiritual battles because He who is within us is greater than our enemy. (1 John 4:4) Stand, put on God’s armor, and pray; the Lord is your defender!

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Digging Deeper is for Everyone!

1) Take this passage (or any other passage).
2) Read it, and the verses around it,
several times
3) Write down your questions
as you think of them.
4) Ask specific culture related questions and be ready to dig around for your answers. Google them, use, or look them up in a study Bible and read the footnotes (click on the little letters next to a word and it will show you
other related verses!). (
5) Check your applications with other trusted Christians that you are in community with and embrace the fullness of God
in your everyday!

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Why Dig Deeper?

Finding the original meaning is a huge deal when we study Scripture and can make all the difference in our understanding as we apply God’s truths to our everyday lives.

In our modern-day relationships, we want people to understand our original intention as we communicate; how much more so between God and humanity?!

Here’s a little bit more on why we take Digging Deeper so seriously.

Study Tools

We love getting help while we study and is one of many excellent resources, providing the original Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament) with an English translation.

Want to know more about a specific word in a verse? Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Discover “origin”, “definition” and hear the original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!

Want more background? Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))

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