In this lesson I want you to see how critical this passage is in your spiritual life. No matter how much you know about Scripture, how solid your foundation, how much information you have regarding God’s truth., you are still potentially a loser because this is a war that is won and fought on a daily basis. We can set aside everything we know and if we’re not prepared for war, be defeated. Have you put your breastplate on?
I. 6.14 – The Breastplate of Righteousness
- No Roman soldier in his right mind would have ever gone into battle without a breastplate. It protected a person’s vital areas.
- Breastplates varied by how they were made, but the idea was the same: protect the heart and the bowels.
- The essential key to success is the breastplate of righteousness. If there is not righteousness in your life, then the rest of these pieces of armor really aren’t going to matter.
II. What is the Righteousness of which Paul Speaks?
- What do we mean when we say “righteousness?” Very simply it is “a right relationship to God.”
- What Paul is not talking about: Self-righteousness.
- Luke 18.10-12 – what’s he saying? I’m glad I’m so good. I’ve arrived.
- Luke 18.13-14 – God, be merciful to me, a sinner!
- Isaiah 64.6 – all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.
- Philippians 3.4-6 – Paul was the prime example of self-righteousness.
- The righteousness Paul sought: 3.7-11 – v. 9 is the key passage.
- 3.12-14 – This is something we grow in.
- Notice: 3.12 – Paul was not yet perfect, but he pressed on to make it his own.
- 3.13 – he strained forward… 3.14 – he pressed on.
- Philippians 2.12 – We need to be committed to working out our salvation…
III. Your Breastplate is Your Righteous Holy Life
- You can live a righteous life. It is a matter of daily, moment by moment choices.
- Philippians 3.10 – it wants to become like Jesus.
- Holy living is the breastplate. If you don’t live a holy life, you lose:
- Your joy. See Psalm 51.12.
- Your productiveness and fruitfulness. See Galatians 5.19-23.
- Your positive influence, Matthew 5.14-16; Philippians 2.15-16a.
- So how about you? Is your armor on? Are you wearing your breastplate?
- 1 Peter 2.11 – abstain from fleshly lusts.
- 1 Peter 2.12 – Be committed. Live a righteous life. Live a life above reproach.