TRANSCRIPT: Good morning, Five Minute Families. Thank you for joining us on this next episode of the Five Minute Family devotional brought to you by Clear View Retreat. Our hearts are for your families and seeing them thrive in a world that continues to push against a Biblical view of family and Christian values. With the many challenges that life brings today, the Bible still has answers. Ephesians chapter 6 is taking us through what we are calling the Key Truths for Families as we examination the whole armor of God.
So far we have learned that we must esteem Christ above self-esteem, know the battle before us, stand firm, be held together with the belt of truth, and put on the breastplate of righteousness. Today we are bringing you part 6 of our series and the focusing on the third piece of armor – preparation of the gospel of peace, which many refer to as the shoes of peace.
Verse fifteen of Ephesians 6 says, “and having strapped on your feet the preparation of the gospel of peace.” Verses and chapter labels were not originally parts of the letters and books of the Bible. Thus, we need to look at the beginning of a complex sentence that makes up verses fourteen, fifteen, and sixteen. The sentence begins with Stand firm. So, let’s parenthetical the belt and breastplate that we previously discussed and see that Paul is again writing for Christians to “Stand firm therefore,… having strapped on your feet the preparation of the gospel of peace.” The King James Version, as well as others, say having shod your feet.
Whether we read the language translation as strapped on, shod, or even sandaled with, they are all about underbinding the feet. Underbinding means to bind underneath, which is the foundation. Your feet must be on a firm foundation – a foundation that is more important than footwear. What is the underneath, the foundation, of what God calls His followers to stand on? What do YOU stand on?
Five Minute families, as Christ- followers, our firm foundation is peace of the good news of the completed saving work of Jesus Christ our Lord. Peace. The good news! The strongest foundation of them all.
Let’s turn for a moment to the word preparation; this is not simply that we will slip on some flip flops. Preparation for the Roman soldier meant adding spikes to his shoes. He never stepped without intentionally planning the movement, having a firm grasp on the foundation on which he depended. Are you ready with your preparation? Are you being intentional with preparing your and your families’ hearts and minds with the truth of the gospel in order to stand firm on the peaceful foundation of the Good News?
Considering the shoes of peace, here are five ways to get ready and stand firm in the foundation of God’s gift through Jesus.
- First, we must know that this piece of armor calls for continued action. I enjoy getting home after a long day at work, kicking off my shoes and relaxing with my family. We, of course, can rest in Christ, but we must not let our foundation deteriorate in the storms of life. It takes work.
- Second, we need to review our family’s actual foundation. Be honest with yourself and one another. Assess your worldviews against biblical truth. It can be difficult to separate our family traditions and ways of relating to how the Bible encourages us to shine for Christ and love one another.
- Third, intentionally firm up those areas that match up with the truth. Allow God to show you the strengths He has given you and your family.
- Fourth, evaluate your areas of weakness. Look for the slippery area of the worn out shoe, so to speak. In what areas are you personally struggling to get traction in life? What areas as a family? How will you improve those weak areas? Remember, God is the ultimate cobbler; He can give us new strength.
- And, finally, never forget that the gospel is your goal. Many say that evangelism is seen as the end goal of this piece of armor. However, we see how a firm foundation based on the peace of the gospel allows US the firm stance we need to defend the truth so that we will be fully prepared and comfortable on our foundation. Yes, having a firm foundation leads to better evangelism, but we must also remember that the gospel of peace is for us, too.
May God guide your family as your work together to fit on the armor of God. By the way, as you work toward that goal, now is a great time to plan your family discipleship for the coming school breaks or vacation times. Connect with us at www.clearviewretreat.org for more information. Be blessed!