Calvary Baptist Church W.A.R. Bible Study: The Shield of Faith
Study Date: Tuesday, June 9, 2020
The Roman soldier carried into battle a fourth piece of armor called the “scutum”. It was a shield, very large, slightly curved, rectangular in shape and within its center was a large piece of metal called a “boss”. The shield was much needed to defend the body. Because it was huge (some 3½ feet tall and almost 3 feet wide) the soldier was given a great deal of protection from the enemy’s fiery darts and arrows. It was impressive for the soldier’s defense. The “boss”, the metal knob, allowed the soldier to deflect the more vicious blows and also served in a offensive capacity to knock the opponent backwards.
For the Christian, we must realize that Satan shoots fiery arrows at us that have a desired affect. Satan shoots spiritual darts of doubt, despair, lies, fear, hatred, temptation, indulgences, wrong thinking and wrong behavior. When we experience wrong thought patterns and wrong behavior it is a result of the enemy’s arrows that have been shot our way. When these darts penetrate us the enemy (Satan) is doing a “happy dance”. He is tickled and ecstatic. One of the enemy’s favorite arrows is convincing Christians to interpret the scriptures wrong and casting doubt on the foundation of God’s Word.
Big Picture: Taking up the Shield of Faith changes the dynamics on the battlefield.
Dr. Oscar T. Moses
Key Thought #1:
To this point, Paul has described armor that we wear. The shield is something we must take up and use. Paul is emphatic that we “take up” this piece of armor. Just holding it will be useless; you must make an effort to use it. The Shield of Faith is a crucial piece of armor for the Christian soldier to defend him or herself from injurious attacks that leads to harmful, doubtful and sinful behavior.
- What is faith? Give a scripture defining faith and explain it.
- How does Hebrews 11:6 apply to the shield of faith?”
Key Thought #2 :
Faith means believing what God says is true.
- How was the Shield of Faith applied to Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in Daniel 3: 1-18?
- Describe the difference between the physical shield and the spiritual shield. Give an example.
Key Thought #3:
A shield deflects. Satan is always hurling darts (arrows) of worry, doubt, and fear in our direction. The only time they can hit us is when we let our Shield of Faith down – when we stop believing God is in control.
- How does James 2:20 teach us that faith cannot just be in our minds?
- Explain how Satan uses COVID 19, racial tensions, police misconduct and abuse, fear, anxiety and depression as fiery darts?
Key Thought #4 – The Roman military had a very effective tactic that made use of their large shields. When the enemy began firing arrows and other projectiles at the army, the soldiers would close ranks into a rectangular array—called the testudo, or “tortoise,” formation—and those on the outside would use their shields to create a wall around the perimeter. Those in the middle would raise their shields over their heads to protect everyone from airborne missiles. The result was a formidable human tank that could be stopped only through a tremendous effort.
- How can the church come together and join shields to guard from attacks during COVID 19 and in light of the ongoing systemic injustice of police abuse against people of color?
Taking up the Shield of Faith is not faith in our faithfulness but faith in God’s faithfulness. Our faith is founded on the promises of God. How familiar are we with these promises? Do we know what God has promised us? If our knowledge of and trust in them are unsteady, we will be too.
©Dr. Oscar T. Moses – Calvary Baptist Church W.A.R. Bible Studies 2020