Sunday, November 12, 2023

Full Armor of God Part 5 – The Breastplate of Righteousness by Rev. Bruce A. Shields

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Full Armor of God

Part 5 – The Breastplate of Righteousness

by Rev. Bruce A. Shields




This document is a Sermon Outline. You may hear the full audio of the sermon by following the link Online Audio Files located above for this and other Full Sermon Audios. For a complete list of Sermon Outlines, visit or Truth Digest on Facebook; for our Official Church website, visit, or find us on Facebook at House of Faith Church. #worship #godheals #newtestament #jesuslovesyou #churchfamily #godsword #loveoneanother #holy #godislove #church #jesus #god #bible #christian #love #faith #worship #jesuschrist #gospel #prayer #christ #christianity #pray #holyspirit #godisgood #hope #blessed #armorofgod



1.     Introduction

2.     Strength of the Lord

3.     Put on the Armor

4.     Belt of Truth

5.     The Breastplate of Righteousness




Today is Sunday. November 5th, 2023


            We spoke last week about wearing the Belt of Truth from the Full Armor of God and how important the belt is to the other parts, including the Breastplate and holding your sword.


            Before that, we spoke about how many times in Ephesians we are told to “do” something, such as “put on,” “take up,” and “stand firm.”


            We must remember that although our strength comes from the Lord, and He equips us, we still have our part to play in the matter at hand. Paul compares what we are speaking of in Ephesians to war. We must take the symbolism and allegories and seek understanding in their meaning to fully grasp what the Spirit of God is trying to tell us in these verses.


            Let’s say a country takes soldiers and gives them the best equipment. Top of the line, new, fully stocked, and armed with the best money can buy. This soldier has the power and might of the country behind him, and his call to duty is to fulfill the desires of his country using the means provided to him.


            However, when it is time to go into battle, if that soldier does not “put on his gear,” “take up his armor,” “receive the firearm given to him,” or doesn’t “stand firm,” how will he do in battle?


            Can you imagine going into battle without your firearm?


            Although the battle was won by the power of God, what if David did not take his sling? The sling he kept by his side while tending the flocks for years. The sling he had trained with and killed many lions and wolves with.


            We have our responsibilities in this world to serve our Lord Jesus Christ. There are things we must DO. Because reading and hearing is only part of the Word of God.


            James 1:22 “become doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.”


            Psalm 144:1 “Blessed be Yahweh, my rock, Who trains my hands for war, My fingers for battle;”


            There is an old saying. “A student asked, You teach me to fight, but you talk about peace. How do you reconcile the two? The teacher replied, It is better to be a warrior in a garden than to be a gardener in a war.”


            Sometimes, it feels contrary to be called to bring peace wherever we roam, yet bless God for training our hands for war. But the two go hand in hand because while we bring the Gospel of Peace to those who will receive it, some work tirelessly to destroy us and our work for the Lord.


            Therefore, we must be doers of the word, taking what we read and hear and putting it into practice in our lives so that we may be prepared both to share the gospel of peace with others and defend ourselves in our battles.


            When we study the word of God, we must use proper exegesis and hermeneutics. These sound like terrible diseases or perhaps the next strain of uncontrollable viruses; however, they are crucial to proper study, even if you never remember their names.


            Simplified, think of who the word was written to, what it was to accomplish, what was going on at the time, in context with the rest of the book, in context with the Bible as a whole, and glean what it is saying to you today.


            In this way, you will find understanding through the Holy Spirit of what you read.



Keeping that in mind, the previous chapter of Ephesians, Ephesians 5:1 to Ephesians 6:10, tells us how to be imitators of God. The scriptures then tell us about what the Lord has done to prepare us for spiritual battle by giving us the Full Armor of God.


            From this, one can infer that to obtain access to the full armor of God, one must be actively trying to be a doer of the word and live as an imitator of God as His beloved children.


            In other words, you cannot live in sin, or however you wish and expect to have access to the full armor of God. It is reserved for those who are dedicated to serving the Lord.


            Can I walk up to a United States military facility and demand they give me all the armor and supplies I need to fight in battle and throw in an M249 and a few thousand rounds. Also, an A10 to get me around?


            Of course not. It is entirely ridiculous to think so. Yet, we see those who do not wish to walk the narrow path always demand this of God, believing they can live however they choose and still receive all the benefits and blessings of God’s Kingdom.


            That is not how it works…anywhere.


Ephesians 6:10-18 (Legacy Standard Bible)

10 “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the might of His strength.

11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm 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 world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.

13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.


14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth,

and having put on the Breastplate of righteousness,


15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace.

16 In addition to all, having taken up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one,

17 also receive the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,


18 praying at all times with all prayer and petition in the Spirit,

and to this end, being on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints


Today’s Topic: the Full Armor of God – Breastplate of Righteousness


I.                THE PURPOSE OF THE ARMOR


                                           i.     According to scripture, all believers are saints, not just the ones deemed so by someone in a castle with a big hat.

                                         ii.     If you are a believer, you are in the Lord’s army, and a spiritual battle is taking place right now as we speak.

                                        iii.     The Lord wants you to be equipped and prepared for it so you may be victorious and live as an overcomer.



                                           i.     All parts are different, and each has a duty to perform.

                                         ii.     When we equip the entirety of the Full Armor, we are at our strongest in the Lord and equipped for service.

                                   iii.     If we do not equip a part or wear (use it) incorrectly, we are in danger of weakness from our armor malfunctioning.

                                        iv.     The devil does not look for your strengths to attack but your weaknesses.

                                         v.     Do not underestimate his cunningness.

1.     “Be of sober spirit, be watchful. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:8

                                        vi.     A lion hunts for the weak, lame, sick, and those who wander too far from the herd.



                                           i.     Does anyone know what a Misericorde is?

                                         ii.     It is a Latin word that comes from the French word for mercy.

                                        iii.     It is a specially designed long dagger used in the High Middle Ages to deliver the death stroke in battle.

                                        iv.     If a knight was seriously wounded in battle, it was considered merciful to deliver the dagger through the opening in the top of the knight's armor near the neck, down to the heart, or through the helms view ports piercing the brain.

                                         v.     Satan, in the same way, looks for openings in your armor and wishes to strike at our weakest of parts.

                                        vi.     Living righteously in truth helps us remove the weakness of our armor, making us strong in the Lord and able to stand firm against Satan’s attacks and resist the evil day.

1.     “Be subject therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:7-

                                      vii.     It does not say the devil won’t attack, but if we resist, he WILL flee!



a.     What is a Breastplate?

                                           i.     Armor protecting your vital organs, such as your heart


b.     What is the Breastplate of Righteousness?

                                           i.     It refers to the righteousness purchased by Christ at the cross

1.     “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

                                         ii.     Through Christ, we can be the righteousness of God.

                                        iii.     We can live as beloved children imitating God.


c.     What does the Breastplate accomplish?

                                           i.     The Breastplate of Righteousness protects our heart and soul from evil and deception. We NEED the righteousness of Christ because ours is no match for an attack by Satan.

1.     “For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, carry us away.” Isaiah 64:6

                                         ii.     When we acknowledge that our strength and righteousness are insufficient for battle, equip ourselves with the strength and might of the Lord, and equip God’s armor, that is when we are truly ready for battle.



a.     We are instructed to “Put On”

                                           i.     This implies we do not automatically wear this at all times.

                                         ii.     Putting on the Breastplate of righteousness is a decision on our part.

                                        iii.     We must first ensure we have the Belt of Truth to fasten it

                                        iv.     Without the truth of God’s word, righteousness is based on our own attempts, which can lead to condemnation because we are attempting to do things in the flesh rather than the Spirit of Truth.

                                         v.     “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 so that the righteous requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” Romans 8:1-4



                                           i.     “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vine-grower. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He [a]cleans it so that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already [b]clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit from itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. 5 I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned.” John 15:1-6


                                           i.     Firstly, we make the decision to

1.     The instruction is given, put on

2.     We obey

3.     Obedience to the word makes us righteous in His sight.

4.     “Do you not know that when you go on presenting yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?” Romans 6:16

                                         ii.     We seek His Righteousness.

1.     “But continually seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided to you.” Matthew 6:33




            Let's read Ephesians and really take our time to absorb its content. We will better understand what the Lord has prepared for us to enable us to “stand firm against the schemes of the devil AND resist the evil day” and how this applies to our everyday walk.


            The Breastplate of Righteousness protects our hearts and souls from evil and deception and develops in us purity of heart, which drives our actions. It creates a lifestyle of putting into practice what we believe in our hearts, and our lives conform to the image of Christ.


            The Breastplate protects us from temptation and deception.


            It is another part of the Full Armor which enables us to stand firm in this evil day.




Next week:

The Full Armor of God Part 6: THE GOSPEL OF PEACE



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