9/18 Ephesians 6:17

17 . . . and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God . . .

The only offensive weapon in this armor-of-God passage is the sword of the Spirit. To make certain we understand, Paul tells us it is the Word of God. This is the tool with which we resist the temptations of the world, the lust of our flesh, and the assaults of Satan. We do use prayer, but it is prayer laced with Scripture and based on Scripture. This is not a sword of intellect, otherwise the slower ones among us could not do battle. It is not of physical prowess, otherwise the weaker could not join the fight. It is the sword of the Spirit, and every believer has the Spirit (1 Corinthians 3:16).

Jesus showed us how to use it against the devil when He was tempted in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-8). He used it with His opponents to correct them (Mark 12:24-27). He relied on it in times of duress (Psalm 22; Matthew 27:46). Jesus knew how to wield the sword of the Spirit.

But let us not forget that it is the sword of the Spirit. Jesus spoke only what the Father taught Him (John 8:28). He did not wield the sword as He willed, but as the Father directed Him by the Spirit. We can throw about Scriptures as we will in our old nature and accomplish nothing. We must learn to wield the Word at the direction of the Spirit, and only then are we truly effective in this spiritual battle.

Consider: Warriors care for their weapons on a daily basis. They know their weapons and use them it at the direction of their commander. Get equipped. Get trained. Join the battle!