Grace Bible Church
Tree of Life
A Weekly Review
Week ending 122913
The Sword of the Spirit.
All believers must learn to endure against the attacks made on Bible doctrine, 2TI 4:3, for the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires;
There is a tremendous price to pay for receiving Bible doctrine, PRO 23:23, Buy truth, and do not sell it, get wisdom and instruction and understanding. And this means that you may have to travel a little to get it. It’s very interesting that in the days of our Lord’s earthly Ministry they complained about traveling to hear doctrine also. However, our Lord dealt with that issue directly in MAT 12:42 when He said that “The queen of the south shall rise up with this generation at the judgment and shall condemn it, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, something greater than Solomon is here.”
Experiential sanctification comes only through Bible doctrine, not human works or achievement, JOH 17:17, “sanctify them in the truth; thy word is truth.”
The believer must also have praise toward the Word of God, PSA 56:4, In God, whose word I praise, in God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere man do to me?
PSA 56:10 in God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise,
Rejection of Bible doctrine produces poverty, acceptance produces reward.
PRO 13:13, the one who despises the word will be in debt to it, but the one who fears the commandment will be rewarded.
PRO 16:20, He who gives attention to the word shall find good, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lloyd.
Persecution will arise on the believer who makes Bible doctrine number 1 priority, MAT 13:21, yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.
Bible doctrine is the basis for the divine judgment at both the Bema seat judgment or the White Throne Judgment.
JOH 12:48, “he who rejects me, and does not receive my sayings, has one who judges him; the word i spoke is what will judge him at the last day.”
Love for the Lord Jesus Christ is based upon the believer guarding Bible doctrine in their life, JOH 14:23-24, Jesus answered and said to him, if anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode with him. The one who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me.
Bible doctrine communicated is that which cleans up the believer's life, JOH 15:3, “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.”
EPH 5:26, That He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
It is through the communication of Bible doctrine that disciples increase. ACT 6:7, And the Word of God kept on spreading; and the number of the disciples continued to increase greatly in Jerusalem,
ACT 20:32 "and now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
ROM 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the Word of Christ.
Bible doctrine is the weapon that the believer uses in life.
EPH 6:17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.
HEB 4:12 For the Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two‑edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Only fools despise Bible doctrine, Proverbs.
PRO 1:7, “the fear of the lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
PRO 1:22, “how long, o naive ones, will you love simplicity? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing, and fools hate knowledge?”
PRO 2:10, for wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
PRO 10:14, wise men store up knowledge, but with the mouth of the foolish, ruin is at hand.
PRO 15:14, the mind of the intelligent seeks knowledge, but the mouth of fools feeds on folly.
Bible doctrine is that which is pleasant to the soul.
PRO 19:8, he who gets wisdom loves his own soul; he who keeps understanding will find good.
PRO 24:4, and by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.
PRO 24:5, a wise man is strong, and a man of knowledge increases power.
ECC 7:12, for wisdom is protection just as money is protection. But the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the lives of its possessors.
Rejection of Bible doctrine produces destruction.
ISA 5:13, Therefore my people go into exile for their lack of knowledge;
HOS 4:6, My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being my priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.
God desires doctrine in the soul not human works.
HOS 6:6 For I delight in loyalty rather than sacrifice, and in the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.
ROM 10:2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.
Even love is based on the intake of Bible doctrine.
PHI 1:9, And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment,
EPH 6:17, And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
The sword was called the machaira which was the type of sword that the Romans used. They defeated two the most famous military armies in the ancient world, the Gauls and the barbarians who were staunch enemies of Rome. They were very tall and yet they were defeated by the Roman’s who were only 5 foot 6 inches on the average. Yet the Romans actually beat them every time because they used the machaira rather than the romphaia which was a long broad sword, anywhere from four feet to 6 feet but it only one cutting edge. The machaira was only 18 inches long, but both edges and the point were very sharp.
This was one of the most unusual weapons ever invented was the machaira sword. The Roman machaira turned out to be the most ingenious invention of warfare of its day. The blade of this perfectly balanced weapon [machaira] was usually only eighteen inches long. It had two cutting edges instead of one, and it tapered off to a sharp point. The machaira was very maneuverable and easy to operate in time of warfare. Its outstanding advantage was that the Roman soldier was never off-balance while he used his machaira.
Now, again under the principle of hermeneutics the Bible must be interpreted in the time in which it was written. And at this time in the ancient world, it was generally conceded that the machaira sword was the basic weapon for close combat. It’s interesting that if the satanic attack does not succeed from afar off or a distance with the flaming missiles, darts, spears or arrows, that the attack continues until it is at your back door. Therefore, the final piece of military equipment which the believer needs to learn to operate under pressure is the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
So, if you put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of integrity, the combat shoes of the gospel, and you lift up the shield of faith, and put on the helmet of salvation. If you do all of those things, and the satanic attack has not succeeded in stopping your momentum, motivation and spiritual progress, then you must be prepared for even a closer combat than before.
Remember what our verse looks like in EPH 6:17, And take [or receive favorably, grasp, and welcome] the helmet of salvation, and [take, or receive favorably, grasp, and welcome] the sword of the Spirit,
Why are we commanded to take, receive favorably, grasp, and welcome the sword of the spirit? Well, the struggle, the fight, the labor, the battle and conflict is two-fold:
- It is a struggle, a fight, and labor, and at times, even a conflict, to learn the word of God.
- To stick it out and to stay with it, is a very rare quality to find in the people of God.
There are just too many successful strategies of the devil which distract the believer from positive volition. Especially distractions related to priorities.
- Social distraction.
- Mental distraction.
- Marital distraction.
- Christian service distraction.
- Pleasure distraction.
- Time distractions, the problem of a disorganized life.
So the struggle, the fight, the labor, the battle and conflict is two-fold:
- It is a struggle, a fight, and labor, and at times, even a conflict, to learn the word of God.
- It can be a struggle, a fight, a battle and a conflict to use the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God in a pressure situation.
EPH 4:14, warns us against falling away from doctrine during difficult times.
EPH 4:14, "That we no longer be children, de-stabilized in heavy seas [fragmented] Driven out of control by every wind of false teaching [fragmentation results in accepting false doctrine], by the trickery of people [false teachers], by cunning deception for the purpose of deceitful scheming."
By the way, this stresses the importance of the accurate and precise communication of the word of God. If your pastor is not accurate in what he teaches than you will not have the accurate information needed to use the sword of the Spirit. The pastor must be accurate and precise in his doctrinal communication. The PPOG is a strict system of procedure based upon the accurate teaching of the word of God. It is based upon the very simple statement that a right thing must be done in a right way. It must be precise and correct in its procedure.
There is nothing sloppy in the procedure of the Christian way of life. With the introduction of human power and energy of the flesh function, sloppiness occurs. With the introduction of putting down your doctrinal differences and loving everyone, apostasy occurs. You are commanded to love everyone but you are never commanded to fellowship with them at the expense of compromising doctrine. That’s why, doctrine says, separate under certain conditions.
So God has developed, in His grace, a system which is totally impossible for human power to live in. In fact, this system that God has designed and that the pastor must be accurate in communicating frustrates human power constantly. The pastor must be accurate with the way that he handles the sword of the Spirit. And the believer must be accurate as well.
LUK 6:40, “A pupil is not above his teacher; but everyone, after he has been fully trained, will be like his teacher.”
This means that there is no place in the spiritual army of the lord Jesus Christ for sloppiness. Sloppy procedure is always related to emotion, to human works, and to human activity, and is always a manifestation of arrogance.
And the power of God is not delegated to a system of sloppy procedure.