2 Peter 1: 5-7
“So don’t lose a minute in building on what you’ve been given, complementing your basic faith with good character, spiritual understanding, alert discipline, passionate patience, reverent wonder, warm friendliness, and generous love, each dimension fitting into and developing the others …”
I’ve spent my entire life in church. I vividly remember being in my Kindergarten Sunday School class and hearing the stories of Noah’s Ark, Jonah and the whale, and Daniel and the lion’s den for the hundredth time in only just the 4 little years that I had lived. I remember the moment when I was six years old and it all suddenly clicked in my tiny brain, and I gave my life to God. I wanted Him to forgive me for my sins, I wanted to thank Jesus for saving me, and I wanted the Holy Spirit to live in my heart forever. Shortly after, I joined the Bible drills team and spent every Sunday night memorizing Bible verses, songs to remember the books of the Bible, and learning the importance of knowing God’s word. Throughout my entire childhood, God was made a priority and my faith was something I held very dear. This is mostly due to my parents teaching that knowing the Bible was of utmost significance in our lives. A few years later, I was blessed to be able to attend a private Christian school. While there, Bible classes were part of the curriculum and memory verse quizzes took place every Friday. Biblical values, morals, and beliefs were instilled in my heart in between Math and English classes every day. At the time, I knew that what I was studying was important, but it’s hard to understand the usefulness of something until a time comes when you need it.
I’m currently in the middle of Priscilla Shirer’s “The Armor of God” study, and I’m finally beginning to understand why knowing God’s Word is so necessary. Priscilla writes:
“Being a believer doesn’t give you immunity from the assaults of the enemy, but it does give you access to the power of the Father—His power to defend you as well as reverse what’s been done to you. If you want to win the fight—if you want to join me in flipping scripture, pinning down the enemy, and crippling his impact in your life—the key is realizing you’re connected to more spiritual brawn than is coming against you.”
Every day is a new fight against the devil’s schemes and a battle of whether to listen to our flesh or to the Holy Spirit that lives within us. Every day is a struggle, but God gives us a guide for how to effectively fight the wicked in Ephesians 6.
“Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
In order to be fully equipped with the Armor of God, we must first know His word. The defense He offers is useless if we don’t recognize its importance for us.
Now I realize that even when I was younger and life wasn’t as tough, it was those days in Sunday school, in Bible drills, and each day at school in Bible class that God was preparing me to fight that battle for my soul. Looking back, I’m so thankful I had these opportunities to learn His word at a young age because I’m now able to fully understand what I’ve always acknowledged to be true: knowing the Bible is of utmost significance in our lives.
God desires that we use His word as protection to win the battle against our flesh and the devil, but He also wants us to engage in conversation with Him daily. Part of experiencing spiritual growth is first by getting to know Him through prayer in an effort to understand His word. His word will then be our security when we know Him and create a relationship with Him that is greater than the daily struggles and temptations that we face.