The Belt of God

Sermon delivered on April 30th, 2017
Morning Service

By: Pastor Greg Hocson

Scripture Text: Ephesians 6:10-18



Last Sunday's sermon was an introduction to a series of messages on the whole armour of God. Today I want to begin looking at the armour of God - what it is, how we apply it and what it does to protect us.


In order to fight our spiritual battle and be able to stand and withstand the wiles of the devil, we must take seriously God's admonition to every child of God in ...

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11: Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 

The admonition to us is to be strong and courageous in the Lord and be armed with the whole armour of God. It is not enough to be strong and courageous, we must also be properly armed. This is where the armour of God comes in. 


Ephesians 6:13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 

The "evil day" here, is the day of temptation and trial. It is the day when you are violently assaulted by the enemy. We are commanded to stand firm in the "evil day". What is it that will enable you and me as believers to stand firm against the wiles of the devil and the evil day? It is the armour that God has provided. If you are a soldier who is strong and courageous but if you enter the battlefield wearing slack and shirt, you are not going to do much. You are not going to stand without this armour securely placed. You cannot possibly hope to survive the battlefield.


And when do we put the armour of God on? 

Standing firm requires preparation. The armour of God must be put on before the enemy attacks. It must be put on before the battle rages. In order to stand firm the armour of God must be secure and in place before the evil day arrives. We must have our armour always on, to be ready against the evil day which may come at any moment, the war being perpetual.


At the time Paul wrote this epistle, he was a prisoner in Rome. He was constantly surrounded by Roman soldiers. And being surrounded by Roman soldiers, Paul was well aware of their uniform and uses this to describe the Christian's spiritual armour. There are six pieces in this armour and each piece is necessary if we are to live victoriously for the Lord Jesus Christ and stand against the assaults of the devil. Paul starts with the belt of truth. Somebody might ask, why did Paul start with belt? Why not the breastplate or the shield or the sword? Why start with the belt? This is not a random listing of the pieces of the armour. There is a logical order and a proper sequence. The order Paul lists these pieces of armour here is the exact order that a Roman soldier would have put them on in preparation for battle. And so Paul starts with the belt of truth. 


I - The Physical Belt

The belt was a very important piece to the Roman soldier's armour. The belt was the first piece of armour the soldier would put on. The belt of a Roman soldier was not like the belt you may have on today, which keeps your pants firmly in place. In ancient times the Roman soldier wore a long flowing robe. They cover the soldier's body, shoulders to hips and sometimes even down to the legs. It was used to keep the clothing close to the body, so nothing would be loosed and flapping around. It secures all other pieces of the armour in place. A soldier might be wearing all his great weaponry, but if his loin belt was not in place, everything would fall apart. 


When the time came for the soldier to advance into battle the first thing that he would do would be to gather up the long flowing robe and to tuck it into his belt. If the soldier failed to tuck his loose outer robe into his belt, he would easily trip and fall. He would defeat himself. He would be laying on the ground having stumbled and he would be completely open and easy target to the enemy. 


That is the imagery Paul is saying here, having girded your loins. 

Ephesians 6:14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

To gird your loins was to tuck in that outer robe such that now it was hold up in order that he could run and not be hindered. For the soldier to gird his loins means that he was alert to the enemy. It meant that he is free in his movement and nothing would trip him up. He was freed up for a decisive action. He was able to make a bold step and a strong stand. 


Soldiers wear the belt not for ornament. It is not something you can do without for it bound the other pieces together and gave the soldier freedom of movement.


This is absolutely fundamental and critically essential for standing victoriously, This is not an option. This is an absolute necessity for victory. Tucking in the robe into the belt was the sign in his own heart that he is now ready for the conflict, ready for action, ready for battle, ready for combat.


So the loin belt was the most vital part of all the weaponry the Roman soldier wore. 


II - The Spiritual Belt

2 Corinthians 10:4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5: Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;


So what about the "Belt of Truth"?

Ephesians 6:14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

Just as the Roman soldier's belt held things in place and kept things where they needed to be, the belt of truth does the same for us. As a Roman soldier would gather up his robe and tuck it into his belt so all of our thoughts, all of our beliefs, all of our convictions, all of our viewing of the world must be tied down to the truth. 


We prepare for spiritual war by knowing truth. What truth? God's truth as recorded in the Scripture. Bible truth. Gospel truth. Objective truth as revealed in the Word of God. Truth that is divine, absolute, exclusive, unchanging, eternal, authoritative, liberating.  We must gird our loins about with truth. Gospel truth as revealed in the Scripture. 


Peter used the same imagery in ...

1 Peter 1:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

We must our gird up the loins of our minds. The spiritual warfare is the battle for the mind. We must protect our minds. We must fastened down our minds with truth. Truth should surround us like a belt. To gird one's loins with truth, means to have all your thoughts tied down to the truth - the Word of God. This is where it starts. You cannot win the spiritual battle without knowing the essential truths of the Christian faith. There should be no unguarded or unprotected thoughts ...


"All loose thinking in the Christian life that is not tied down and girded up with truth is like going into battle with a belt made of spider webs.


A belt made of spider webs will give way even before the battle starts. 


Now, why is it important to know truth? It is important because as you and I face this enemy he is going to lie to us. 

John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Satan wages war against us by spouting lies. He lies about God. He lies about the world, sin, and righteousness. He lies about life, eternity, and salvation. He lies about you and me, either he will tell you are good enough without Christ, you don't need a Saviour. You are fine. You are a nice person. Or he will tell, you are so bad Christ cannot help you. You are such a mess, there is nothing you can do. There is no hope. 


He obscures and bends and twists everything. The only way you can counter those lies is by knowing the truth. This is why we need to gird our minds about with truth. Knowing God's truth is the sure fire antidote to Satan's lies and deception. And to be truly ready for the battle, we must know God's truth as recorded in the Scripture. 


If the belt of truth is not in its proper place we, as believers, have no foundation on which to base our warfare with the enemy. Understanding Bible truth is absolutely essential and non-negotiable to have a strong stand in this world against the devil. The truth must be fastened down in our minds. It is the truth that leads us to victory. The truth and not your feelings. 


III - The Practical Admonitions

Ephesians 6:14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

We must gird our loins with truth. How do we do this?


1. We must know the truth

To gird our minds with truth we must begin with solid understanding of Biblical truth. This means that we regularly read the Word of Truth. This means that we diligently study the Word of Truth. This means that we faithfully and regularly sit under the teaching and preaching of the Word of Truth

2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Every Christian, not just ministers, must carefully and diligently study the Bible - the Word of Truth. This is why, here at Grace & Truth, we are committed to Biblical teaching, to Biblical preaching. This is why here at Grace & Truth, in addition to our regular services, Sunday morning and afternoon services, we have Sunday School and Mid-week Bible Study. Why? Because these are ways to gird our minds with truth. These are ways to equip us and be able to stand in the evil days.


Victorious Christian living begins first and foremost with knowing the truth. We must know whom we have believed and what we believed. We must know what we believe and why we believe!


2. We must believe the truth

If we are going to stand firm in the evil day, we must not only know the truth, we must also believe the truth. We must be firmly rooted and grounded in the truth. We cannot be tossed to and fro. We must have a deep settled conviction in the truth and deep and settled commitment to the truth. We must be fully persuade of the truth or we will be persuaded otherwise.


Former President Ronald Reagan stated, "Americans yearn to explore life's deepest truths." He went on to say, "Within the covers of that single book [the Bible] are all the answers to all the problems that face us today, if we would only read and believe."


3. We must love the truth

As you come to a deeper understanding of the truth you come to love the truth!

Psalm 119: 47 And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved. 48: My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.

Psalm 119:97 O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.

Psalm 119:113 I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love.

Psalm 119:119 Thou puttest away all the wicked of the earth like dross: therefore I love thy testimonies.

Psalm 119:127 Therefore I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold.

Psalm 119:132 Look thou upon me, and be merciful unto me, as thou usest to do unto those that love thy name.

Psalm 119:140 Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.

Psalm 119:159 Consider how I love thy precepts: quicken me, O LORD, according to thy lovingkindness.

Psalm 119:163 I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love.

Psalm 119:165 Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.

Psalm 119:167 My soul hath kept thy testimonies; and I love them exceedingly.


Having discovered  the the truth, we embrace the truth and we love the the truth. Truth does not bore us, it excites and inspires and motivates us.

Luke 24:31 And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight. 32: And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?

That's what happens when we come to a deeper understanding of truth - heart burning within us for truth!


4. We must meditate upon the truth

Joshua  1:8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.

We must reflect upon it throughout the day. We must think upon these truths over and over again in our minds. We must think about them throughout the day. 


Psalm 1:1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. 2: But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.


A good soldier's mind is never away from the truth. Always focused upon the truth. 

Psalm 119:15 I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.

Psalm 119:23 Princes also did sit and speak against me: but thy servant did meditate in thy statutes.

Psalm 119:48 My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.

Psalm 119:97 O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.

Psalm 119:148 Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word.


Girding your mind about with truth is not a superficial distant casual relationship with the truth. It is a firm intense internal possession and passion for the truth. Day and night, night and day, constantly thinking, meditating on the truth. 


5. We must obey the truth

We must make a firm decision to obey the truth. We must make a decisive steps to be one who is not just a hearer of the Word but also doer of the Word. The belt of truth is not for decoration or ornament, it meant to be used.


Winston Churchill once stated, "Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened."


Psalm 119:8 I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly. 9: Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.


Psalm 119:30 I have chosen the way of truth: thy judgments have I laid before me.


Psalm 119:32 I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart. 33: Teach me, O LORD, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end. 34: Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.


This is were it begins with being a soldier in God's army. This is where it begins with putting on the whole armour of God. This is here it begins for us to live a victoriously in the midst of conflict. 


"The Christian armour is made to be worn; and there is no putting off our armour till we have done our warfare, and finished our course." — Matthew Henry


Closing Thoughts

Ephesians 6:14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

How about you today? Do you have the belt of truth on today? Have you girded your loins with truth? Are you girding your loins about with truth? Are you endeavoring to find and know the truth? Do you love Gospel truth? Are you wrapping your mind with truth or are you wrapping your minds with the garbage this world? 


Am I a soldier of the Cross—

A follower of the Lamb?

And shall I fear to own His cause,

Or blush to speak His name?


Must I be carried to the skies

On flowery beds of ease,

While others fought to win the prize

And sailed through bloody seas?


Are there no foes for me to face?

Must I not stem the flood?

Is this vile world a friend to grace,

To help me on to God?


Sure, I must fight if I would reign,

Increase my courage, Lord!

I'll bear the toil, endure the pain,

Supported by Thy Word.


Thy saints in all this glorious war,

Shall conquer though they die

They see the triumph from afar

By faith they bring it nigh.


When that illustrious day shall rise

And all Thy army shine

In robes of victory through the skies

The glory shall be Thine!


O Christians, fight a good fight of faith. Glorify God by fighting a good fight. Glorify God by putting on the whole armour of God, by standing firm against the wiles of the devil. May God give us grace. May God gives us the empowering and all the equipping that we all need to put on the belt of truth and to gird our loins with truth. 


To those who have not believed the Gospel truth, I beseech you, come to Jesus Christ, Who is the Truth. 

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Jesus Christ is the truth and there is no other way to the Father but by Him. Turn from your sin and turn to Christ. 


Isaiah 55:6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:

Seek the Lord and call upon Him while He is near and He will save you and He will save forever.