Jesus Christ Is Lord

Armour of God, Part 4 – The Gospel of Peace

Copyright © Andrew J. Shreeve 2017

 

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; and for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make know the mystery of the gospel

Ephesians 6:10-19

 

Gospel of peace

 

And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace

Ephesians 6:15

Dictionary definitions:

Shod: (Greek: hupodeo) to bind under one’s feet, that is, put on shoes or sandals: bind on, (be) shod (Strong’s Dictionary)

Gospel: (Greek: euaggelion) a good message, that is, the gospel:- gospel (Strong’s Dictionary)

Peace: (Greek: eirene) probably from a primary verb ‘eiro’ (to join); peace (literally or figuratively); by implication prosperity:- one, peace, quietness, rest, + set at one again (Strong’s dictionary)

From the dictionary definitions, we can say that having our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace means: binding to our feet the good news of prosperity, quietness, rest, and oneness or wholeness. It also carries the idea of preparation. So, we need to prepare ourselves with the true message of God’s prosperity and blessing received through faith in Jesus Christ.

Gospel of Peace in the Letter to the Romans

The gospel of peace is also quoted in Paul’s letter to the Romans:

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 bring glad tidings of good things!

Romans 10:15

In the above verse, we see that the gospel of peace is to be preached! The Greek Word translated “preach the gospel” is ‘euaggelizo’ which means: to announce good news (evangelize) especially the gospel:- declare, bring (declare, show) glad (good tidings), preach (the gospel) (Strong’s Dictionary).

To be properly protected from the devil spirits, we need to put on the whole armour of God. This includes being: prepared with the accurate knowledge of God’s good news of peace and prosperity and, ready to announce and preach this good news in every theatre of life. To be silenced from announcing God’s good news through the pressure of political correctness is a form of totalitarianism which we should never ever submit to. God’s good news should not be removed from any sphere of life, lest corruption fill the void.

 

The Gospel of Shalom

In Romans 10:15, the apostle Paul quotes from Isaiah 52:7:

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth tidings of good, that publisheth salvation

Isaiah 52:7

 

The word translated ‘peace’, in the above verse, is the Hebrew word ‘shalom’. Shalom means: “safe, well, happy, welfare, health, prosperity, peace, favour, good health, rest, all is well, be whole” (Strong’s dictionary).

The ‘gospel of peace’ is the gospel of ‘shalom’. It is the good news of God’s power bringing: eternal life and security, safety, happiness, welfare, health and healing, favour, prosperity, rest and wholeness.

There are many Christians who believe in Jesus Christ for their eternal justification, however, they do not have their feet shod fully with the preparation of the gospel of peace. This is because they are unaware that the gospel of Jesus Christ, the gospel of peace, is the gospel of shalom, which is the gospel of health, prosperity, rest and wholeness.

To have our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace we need to expand our understanding of the gospel, from eternal justification, to also include healing and safety for our bodies, prosperity for our finances, and rest for our mind and emotions. The gospel of shalom touches our spirit, soul and body realms.

The gospel of peace was demonstrated by Jesus’ ministry where he brought eternal life, healing and prosperity to those around him. Jesus didn’t just teach about justification unto eternal life but also healed all those who had faith for healing. Jesus fed the five, and four, thousand; showed Peter where to catch a multitude of fish; when there was a need at the wedding, Jesus turned the water into wine; and Jesus told the disciples to pay the tax from the coin in the mouth of the first fish they caught. Jesus’ ministry included the fullness of the gospel of shalom; spirit, soul, body and financially.

The Great Commission

Part of the armour of God is having the full and correct knowledge of the gospel of peace. Having our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace also includes the preparedness and willingness to join our lives to the great commission of the Lord: go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15, Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 1:8).

Jesus Christ understood that the gospel of peace was worth the ultimate price, which included: His death on the Cross of Calvary, His being cursed with the curse of the law, Him being made sin for us and, His going to hell (Hebrews 12:2, Galatians 3:13, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Acts 2:27, 31). Jesus suffered all these things for us. It is, therefore, a relatively small thing for us to obey His command to be involved in the Great Commission. We can be involved in the Great Commission: through our finances, our preparedness to preach the gospel of shalom to all we meet in life, and our openness to follow the Holy Spirit, if He chooses to lead us, into foreign, heathen, lands to preach to those who have had limited exposure and ability to hear the true gospel of shalom.

In fact, we all have been given the ministry of reconciliation, which is the preaching of the gospel of shalom, not necessarily from a church pulpit but, definitely to our family, friends and associates.

Ministry of Reconciliation

All things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; to wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation

2 Corinthians 5:18-19

 

The word of reconciliation has been committed to you and me. That means, if we are negligent in fulfilling our ministry of reconciliation, and if people subsequently go to hell, because they didn’t receive a clear explanation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, their blood is on our hands (John 3:18, Acts 20:25-27).

I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God

Acts 20:26-27

 

The Apostle Paul obviously felt that he had a responsibility to be faithful in his ministry, and if he was negligent in sharing the gospel people would die, and be eternally condemned, as a result of his inactivity (John 3:18, 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9). People’s lives are in the balance! Jesus died, so that we could live. We should also lay down our lives so others can live.

 

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends

John 15:13

 

We lay down our lives for our friends when we preach the gospel of peace. We know the gospel of peace may cause those who are influenced by Satan to hate, persecute, and say evil things about us. We know, that like Jesus, we will be despised and rejected of men (Isaiah 53:3). But this is the price of love. Jesus said “if the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you… if they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you” (John 15:18-20).

 

Many Christians don’t like to be armed with their feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace because this part of the armour brings persecution from the world. Generally, people try to avoid persecution. So, we need courage and strength to put on this piece of the armour. We need to see ourselves as a faithful ambassador of the “Lord of Light and Righteousness”, in the midst of a wicked generation blinded by Satan and sin. We need to continually speak up and declare the glorious gospel of peace, so that people who sit in great darkness, captives of the devil spirits, can have the light of the Word of the Lord exposed to their darkened and sin-bound minds and spirits. We need to be bold enough to sow the spiritual seed of the gospel of peace into their hearts, so they have the opportunity to be born again into the Lord’s eternal kingdom (1 Peter 1:23).

 

Conclusion

Having our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace includes having a full understanding of the meaning of the word shalom. This means expanding our understanding of the gospel to include: eternal justification, physical healing, financial prosperity, safety and, peace for our mind. Having our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace also includes our readiness, and willingness, to yield to the Holy Spirit to preach the gospel and bring the word of reconciliation to those the Lord instructs us to share with. This sharing of the gospel of peace may bring persecution. It, therefore, takes great courage and self-sacrifice to put on this piece of the armour of the Lord.

 

Prayer

Dear Lord, please illuminate our understanding of the fullness of the gospel of shalom, which brings blessing to every realm of our lives – spirit, soul, body and financially. Please strengthen us to be prepared to preach this glorious gospel of your power and deliverance to those who are trapped under the devil’s power of darkness, blindness and spiritual bondage. Please give us the courage to love those who are bound by the devil spirits through preaching the gospel of peace to them, even if it means we will be persecuted, hated and despised. We pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

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