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Part Nine

The Believer’s Armor and the Spiritual Battle

Ephesians 6:10-20:

(v.15, “Feet Shod With The Preparation Of The Gospel Of Peace”)

Ephesians 6:15: “And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.”

Originally, shoes were used primarily for protection. Today, with our paved streets, clean floors, carpeted homes, etc. there is not as much need for protection. Since we do not spend a lot of time walking over rough stones, wading though mud, or strolling across thorny bushes, protection is not quite as vital an issue that it once was. Shoes have become somewhat of a cultural and fashion item.

A second purpose for shoes is for stability. Different shoes are designed for different purposes. The readers of this epistle were familiar with the Roman soldier. Not only did his shoes have to provide protection from sharp rocks but he needed traction for stability in battle. It could mean a lost battle if he were to slip around while engaged in combat with an enemy.

The believer derives both of these benefits, protection and stability, from having his feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.


In Luke 12:42-48, we read the parable of the faithful and wise steward. A “steward” meant a “house administrator” and was used of a trusted servant whom the master of the house would leave in charge during the master’s absence (v42). He was expected to make decisions just as the master would if he were present. We are expected to do the same as Christians. When we are told to pray in Jesus’ name (John 14:13,14; 15:16; 16:23), it does not mean to just stick a trite phrase onto the end of our prayer. It probably means to pray as Jesus, our Master, would pray if He were here praying. That takes knowledge. We have His Spirit and His Word to guide us in His will (Rom. 8:9; Phil. 1:19; II Pet. 1:4; and Col. 3:16; John 8:31; Acts 19:10; Rev. 1:2,9; II Tim. 3:16,17).

We are required to be faithful stewards (I Cor. 4:2). We have been entrusted with the Gospel and should therefore speak to please God and not men (I Thess. 2:4; Gal. 1:10). Jesus has left us on earth to do just as the servants are told in Luke 19:13, “Occupy till He comes.” (“Occupy” here means “to carry on business”). We, like Jesus, should be about our Father’s business (Luke 2:49). It is God’s desire that all men should be saved (I Tim. 2:3,4). Jesus died for just that reason (Mark 10:45). Our priority should be to glorify God by bearing much fruit (John 15:8).

The faithful and wise servant is promised great blessings for his obedience (vs 42-44), and the unfaithful (and foolish) servant is assured of great loss if he is disobedient (vs 46b-48). Please note in verse 47 the severe chastisement that awaits the servant who knows his lord’s will but does not prepare himself.

How can we apply this to our lives? We have no excuse for not knowing God’s will for us. Most of us live in homes that have several Bibles that are seldom opened. With some effort, a Bible teaching church can frequently be found and attended. There is an abundance of good Bible teaching available on radio, television, and the internet. (There is also an abundance of error available from these sources. Be careful). We are accountable to use whatever resources that God has made available to us. If we take advantage of the resources that are available, it is likely that God will provide more to be used for His glory (Luke 16:10).

When speaking of God’s will for our lives, we are not referring to wondering if God wants me to be a missionary in Africa ten years from now. We are talking simply, “obeying what God tells us to do right now.” When we do what He tells us in His Word to do right now, we can know His will. That is because we are, at that point, obeying God and are in His will. Romans 12:1,2 tells us, “I beseech you therefore by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable  unto God, which is your reasonable service, And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing or your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect, will of God. (“Prove” here means “to discern after testing”). This verse is not telling us to try to find out God’s will so that we can decide whether or not to obey it.

If God tells us to do something, it is folly (and sin) to ignore His plain commands and then to piously ask God what His will is for us. When we start to obey, He may lead us into various areas, but one cannot steer a car that is not moving. His leading is also never contrary to His Word. When we are moving in accord with His word, we can determine which of two “right” directions to follow by the peace that He gives us (Col. 3:15). If we are truly yielded to God, it is up to Him to lead us into specific areas. When we lack wisdom, let us ask of God in faith (James 1:5,6).

It may be inferred from this parable that perhaps we may be held accountable for something that we do not presently know how to do but should have learned, i.e. prepared for. Are we allowing God to “stretch” us so that we may fit into His plan for our lives? Is His will even a priority for decisions in our lives? If not, we are missing great blessings and causing grief to the One who loved us enough to pay for our sins and give us the gift of eternal life?

Some commentators assume that this “preparation of the gospel of peace” relates to Romans 10:15 which quotes Isaiah 52:7, “And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace and glad tidings of good things!

There is no doubt that the good news (gospel) should be proclaimed, but it is doubtful that the context supports that idea in this verse. The issue is not concerning attacking the enemy or advancing. We are being exhorted to use the armor in order to stand against the onslaught of the enemy (v. 11,14). If we are not sound in the gospel, we will be unstable in Satan’s attacks. We see this Satanic victory prevail in Christian circles today. The vast majority of those to whom I have witnessed over the years had previously heard some form of the false gospel; Christ-plus-works for salvation. This comes in many forms and sounds appealing but is spiritually deadly. (Read Galatians 1:6-10; 2:16,21; 5:1). We need the protection and stability that is found in the clear understanding and application of the gospel as presented in God’s Word. (I Cor. 15:1-4; Rom. 1:16, John 3:16; Eph. 2:8,9). As we have our “feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace” we are then prepared to not fall into the category of believers who are, “...children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love,...” (Eph. 4:14,15). We can then stand our ground in our conflict with Satan’s forces and need not be slipping and sliding. Having our “feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace” truly gives us protection and stability in the ongoing battle.

Some notes on “The Gospel of Peace”

The word “gospel” (euangelion, ) simply means “good news.” When the angels brought the shepherds “Good tidings” of Jesus’ birth, they were literally “evangelizing” or “good newsing” them (Luke 2:10). When Paul told Timothy to “do the work of an evangelist,” he was not telling him to buy a tent and learn how to scream at people. Literally, he was telling him to do the work of a “gospelist, or “good newsist.” The good news we are to share is not that we need to try real hard and maybe make it some day. It is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus that paid for all my sin. I receive Him by faith (John 1:12). Jesus is not only necessary for my salvation, He is sufficient.

In the passage being studied, the gospel is called “the gospel of peace.” The following are some of the other Biblical designations given to the gospel:

The word is translated “gospel” 104 times in the New Testament. Several times in Matthew and Mark, the Gospel of the Kingdom is mentioned and may be something that is to Israel and has been postponed because of their national rejection of the King. The vast majority of times “gospel” is mentioned it is simply referred to as “the gospel” and usually the context is stating that it was or should be preached or believed.

It is described as “the gospel of the grace of God” once; “The gospel of God” seven times; “The gospel of his Son” once; “The gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” once; “The gospel of Christ” ten times; “The glorious gospel of Christ” (lit. the good news of the glory of Christ) once. It is mentioned as the “gospel of your salvation” once and “the everlasting gospel” once; “The gospel of peace” twice; “My gospel” three times and “our gospel” by Paul twice. Why does he call it “his” gospel? Probably because of his commission from God concerning the gospel as mentioned in I Tim. 1:11, “the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.

Galatians 1:5-9, mentions “another gospel: which is not another.” It is a false gospel with a mixture of grace and works. A curse is pronounced upon those who proclaim this error. (See also II Cor. 11:3).

6. I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

7. Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

8.  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

9. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

All the above terminologies used with “gospel” seem to refer to the gospel” with the possible exception of the “Gospel of the Kingdom” for Israel, and of course, the false gospel mentioned in Galatians, chapter one.

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