Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
The breastplate covered the body of the soldier from the neck to the thighs. It was used to protect the heart. The heart of the believer is focused upon the Lord Jesus Christ and His righteousness, and that focus must be protected. The sign of the Christian soldier is righteousness. When a man is saved, God imputes the righteousness of Jesus Christ to him, or to say it another way, God counts him righteous. It is not enough to stand in the righteousness of Christ. The Christian soldier must protect his heart. This he does by living righteously. Righteousness keeps the heart from ever being wounded and losing its focus. The Christian soldier is to strive after the very righteousness of Jesus Christ and lives righteously in the present world.
Matthew 5:20 – “For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.”
Romans 3:21-22 – “But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe.”
1 Corinthians 15:34 – “Awake to righteousness, and do not sin; for some do not have the knowledge of God.”
Philippians 1:11 – “being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”
Philippians 3:9 – “and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith.”
Ephesians 6:14 (Amplified Bible) – “Stand therefore [hold your ground], having tightened the belt of truth around your loins and having put on the breastplate of integrity and of moral rectitude and right standing with God.”
- Moral Rectitude – The quality of being morally straight and right with God and before all man.
- Integrity – Being honest in all things before man and God.
If we have confessed our sins and are living righteous before God in this present evil world, then we are children of God. But have we been living up to His standard? We are the righteousness of Christ. We are the empowered, overcoming, supernatural, ever victorious, devil stomping, mighty warrior. We are not the always defeated, weak-kneed wimp that we act like sometimes. If we are who God says we are, we should act like it. We have fallen prey to Satan’s tactics. We are the righteousness of Christ. We are morally straight with God. We are ambassadors of Christ representing His kingdom and His royalty, His might, His principles.
- How do you measure up?
- How is your righteousness before man and God?
- How are you overcoming sin?
- How are you as a witness by your words and actions?
- How are your thoughts before God?
- How do you live at home in front of your family?
- How is your focus?
- As God looks at your life, is it pleasing to him? It does not matter if you fit in with the crowd, at school, work, or wherever you go. It does matter if you fit in with God’s plan.
- Is your focus clear and bright or is it a little fuzzy, perhaps a big blur and you can’t distinguish any thing of value. What does God see if He looks your way?
- Are you seeing His plan? Is your life measuring up? We need to get a new view of who God is and what He wants us to be.
- What does His word say and what is His will for our life? Our best solution is to put on His breastplate of righteousness.
The breastplate of righteousness not only protects the heart…it protects the emotions, the desires, the aspirations, the concerns. He is able to take care of whatever concerns you today. All of the anxieties, all of the desires of the inward man, the cares, the hopes, the hurts, longings. No one else may understand you, but God does and His breastplate of righteousness, His covering, His great love surrounds you and will keep you.
Let the breastplate of righteousness be a part of your armor. Don’t leave home without it!!!