“For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood . . . . Therefore put on God’s complete armor. . . . Stand therefore—hold your ground—having tightened the belt of truth around your loins.” – Ephesians 6:12-14 AMP
My grandmothers were DIY dressmakers and used large cotton flour sacks printed in colorful designs and checks when they sewed for me. My childhood dresses featured fabric belts. I loved these dresses—and I loved my grandmothers who taught me that wearing the right belt is no small thing!
With the pervasiveness of elastic waistbands in today’s clothing, belts are less often used. Nevertheless, belts have a longstanding history of importance and functionality. The Apostle Paul did not underestimate the significance of a belt in his allusion to the military gear of Roman soldiers.
He used the example of a combat-ready soldier as a metaphor for wearing the full armor of God needed for fighting spiritual forces (Ephesians 6:10-18). The belt was the critical piece of equipment that held everything together.
Research reveals that soldiers wore two belts. A belt underneath the breastplate held the tunic in place, and a sturdier leather belt cinched over the armor so a sword could be attached. The belts provided protective structure. Along the belt’s front section, for example, hung an apron of metal discs to shield the lower abdomen and other vulnerable body parts.
Similar to a belt, truth ensures strong bonds of integrity and protection for Christians facing Satan’s assaults. In referring to Satan, Jesus indicated: “He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44). Throughout the Bible, anytime Satan attacks with the intent to destroy servants of God, he slithers in the background with lies wrapped in deceitful guile and treachery.
In contrast, Jesus brings the clarifying light of truth, honesty, and justice to the spiritual battlefield. He identifies himself with powerful words, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no one cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6 KJV). Truth is a critical beachhead on the battleground of spiritual warfare! Jesus also identifies the Holy Spirit as the powerful “Spirit of truth” who will “guide you into all the truth” (John 16:13).
Lord, we praise you for assurance of victory. You provide our strong and mighty position in all instances of spiritual warfare through your assertion that we “will know the truth [you]” and the truth will set us free (John 8:32). Thank you for “the truth that abides in us and will be with us forever” (2 John 1:2). Amen.
Kay Henry is a columnist for The Claremore Progress. All Bible quotations are from “The Holy Bible, English Standard Version” (ESV), unless otherwise noted.