POSITIONED FOR VICTORY
As we read Ephesians 6:10-20, certain truths become evident. Even though beset by much evil the Ephesian church made up of Jew and Gentile, is victoriously raised up by Christ and is uniquely positioned for victory as she constantly engages the forces of darkness, by putting on the whole armor of God. She is commanded to be strong, not in her own strength and ability but by recognizing where her true strength lies – in the Lord. This message is especially potent for the saints at Ephesus where idolatry in every form and evil supernaturalism seemed so rampant, prevalent and readily manifested. It also bears great relevance for the twenty-first century church confronted by evil on every hand and side.
The passage teaches there is another invisible realm beyond the one that can be seen, touched or handled. The apostle Paul informs that these spirit-beings of darkness are powerful, cunning, devious and classified as world rulers of wickedness in high places. Yet as powerful as they are, the readers are given to understand that they have all been defeated by the risen Christ (Eph 1:21). This thought is made clear from the outset of the Epistle (Eph 1:19-23). The author wants the reader to know not only the power of their Christ but their spiritual position in Him (Eph 1:19, Eph 2:6).
Therefore, let it sink deep into our spirits today that there is no need to fear and live in constant panic of these overlords of darkness, who are indeed capable of much evil. The inescapable truth is that the saints have been raised up together with Christ and seated in the heavenly realms with him (2:6). Every demonic spirit has been defeated and overcome by the risen Savior! We do not walk around agitated and depressed. There is indeed much cause for celebration, rejoicing and doxological outbursts as found throughout this masterful treatise (Eph 1:13; 1: 15-23; 3:20, 21).
According to the renowned apostle, the saints only have to live out their victory by unequivocally trusting in God’s supernatural strength and by putting on the whole armor of God from head to toe. He commands – “Resist the evil one” (Eph 6:13); “Keep on standing” (Eph 6:13,14); “Put on God’s full armor” (Eph 6:11,l13). He speaks much about the heavenly reality procured and purchased for the Church by Christ, the head of the church, especially in the first section of the epistle. However, this heavenly reality is balanced by the earthly truths of growing up in Him (Eph 4:15) and by resolutely fighting the evil forces of spiritual darkness. He powerfully concludes – Having done all, the believer continues to stand, putting on the full armor of God (6:13).
Amidst all the evils of 2020 the church is promised victory and salvation not only as a past reality, but also as a future hope. As heirs of this message of victory and salvation the church today in every part is encouraged to fight and win. Fully covered and protected in battle we confidently fight and triumph over all the evil cosmic powers of darkness. We are not defeated in this spiritual warfare (Eph 6:10-20). Positioned for victory!
Leroy V. Greenaway
Regional Bishop – Northeast Region
October 10, 2020
In collaboration with our District Overseers, the Church of God of Prophecy submits to the wisdom of continuing to ‘Shelter in Place’ for the safety and protection of the flock. This is to be observed until further notice and the present virus is better contained. Should the need arise to meet, we are advised to meet in groups of no more than 10, while we strictly observe the protocols of social distancing, wearing of masks and aggressive sanitizing of our hands and surfaces frequently touched.
Please let us patiently observe these practices to keep each other safe and alive. We are reminded that we are indeed our brother’s keeper. Stay home! Stay Healthy! Stay Hopeful! We shall soon get through this! Premature re-openings of our churches seem not to be the wisest way to go at this point. Let us continue to pray, caring for each other and staying connected.
Leroy V. Greenaway
Regional Presiding Bishop — Northeast Region