Years ago I knew a guy who wouldn’t wear his hip pads when playing football. He thought it made him run faster. Then one game he was tacked hard and he got a huge bruise on his hip that put him out for two games. He learned the hard way that all of the equipment was important. From then on, he wore hip pads.
In Ephesians 6:11 the Apostle Paul exhorts us to “Put on the whole armor of God” to stand against the wiles of the devil. Paul wrote this Epistle while in prison in Rome, where the Bible says he was actually chained to a Roman soldier. As he wrote these words, I can imagine him glancing over at the soldier all decked out in the Roman armor – the protective gear on his legs and midsection, the breastplate like a bulletproof vest, the special shoes and shin guards, the characteristic Roman helmet, the shield and the sword. It was the perfect picture of a soldier prepared to meet the enemy. So he wrote, “put on the whole armor of God.” It was a great illustration.
The phrase “whole armor” is actually one word in the Greek text. It’s the word panoplia, from which we get our English word “panoply” – something forming a protective covering.
In Paul’s day it was a reference to the full armor of a heavily-armed soldier. Actually, it’s a compound word with the word “all, or whole” attached to the word for “weapon, or instrument of war.” It has the idea of being completely covered and ready for battle. It’s having on “the whole armor.”
Now it seems to me that you and I need to know each piece of this armor so that we don’t leave anything out as we put it on. Achilles’ heel was one place he was not protected, and that’s the very place he was wounded. So, don’t make the same mistake! Put on the “whole armor of God.”
Hey! The spiritual battle is real, and Satan is a cunning enemy. Don’t be unprepared!