Sermon "Skill in Your Hand & God in Your Heart"

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Put on Your Helmet!

"But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for a helmet, the hope of salvation." 1 Thessalonians 5:8
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Do you realize how important our brain is? It is the central control system of our whole body. No matter what our body is capable of, it can't do anything unless the brain tells it to do it. And not only is it the command center for the physical functioning of our bodies, it is also the central processing center for all of our thoughts, ideas and memories. The Lord saw it as being so important that He made sure the space between our ears and behind our eyes is well protected by our hard, thick skulls (some thicker than others of course).

Soldiers for thousands of years have also known how vital the head is to the body. That's why the main target for taking out an enemy has always been the head. It sets up high and is easy to hit, and if struck with enough force will cause an immediate shut down of the whole body. And conversely, a soldier knows how important it was to protect the head. That is why helmets have been the main feature of a soldier's armor ever since man knew how to shape metal to fit the head.

The Apostle Paul when writing his letter to the church in Thessalonica wanted to use a metaphor that the people would understand. So when teaching about the hope of salvation, he referred to it as a helmet.  So what is salvation?

The Hebrew word for salvation is "Yashua" (Joshua). It is the same word rendered in Greek as "Jesus". It means to save, rescue, or set free. You see, all of us are sinners, including you and me.  I know we might look around at others and think we're not that bad, but we're still sinners. We are either doing bad things, or saying bad things or thinking bad things, or all three. And the Bible says the penalty of that sin is death, which it means spiritual death. It is like we have been charged with committing sins, and when we die we will face the righteous Judge; and without a doubt we will be found guilty, because we are. Our punishment will be a sentence to suffer in hell...forever. But even worse than that is we will forever be separated from God.

But God loves us so He wanted to give us a way out. He sent His Son Jesus to the cross to receive our punishment and to save us, rescue us, and set us free. That is salvation! And St. Paul said that knowing you are saved is like having on a helmet to protect you. So if you have on the hope of salvation, you can rest your mind in knowing that when this is all over, your sins have been forgiven and you will go to Heaven to be with the Lord. When the enemy starts to throw doubt and fears and worry at your head, you are protected in knowing that you are saved and God is on your side. When the enemy says you have nothing, you can know that "Christ will supply all of your needs according to His riches in glory." When he tells you that you can do nothing, you can know that you can "do all things through Christ who strengthens you." When he tells you that you will never be nothing, you can know that you are a part of "a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation..."

So are you wearing your helmet? Do you have a certainty settled in your heart and mind that you believe in Jesus and you have accepted his saving grace through faith in Him? If not, you better make sure you put it on because the enemy will attack, and his first strike point will be your mind. Protect yourself! Put on your helmet!

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If you want to put on the helmet of salvation, but you're not sure how, you can simply ask God through a prayer. There is a prayer for salvation at the top right of my blog site here that you can pray. If you would like for me to pray that prayer with you, email me at revericevans@qmail.com!

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