May 24, 2018
Last night at youth group was our final evening in the book of Ephesians together. We covered the last 14 verses in which Paul, drawing on his other arguments throughout the book, calls the Ephesians believers, and us, to take up arms and fight against the enemy (the devil) and his schemes. The two strategic things that Paul calls us to fight with are 1.) our knowledge of the enemy and 2.) the whole armor of God. First, Paul reminds us that our enemy is not against flesh and blood, but against the cosmic powers over this present darkness. We always need to know who we’re fighting against in any war, so that we can strategize. Throughout the Bible, the devil is referred to by many names, and is described as being evil, cunning, and scheming, which means that he’s actively working against us. But we have to remember that Satan has already been defeated and been put to open shame by the cross (Colossians 2:13-15), and one day will be thrown into the lake of fire once and for all. Therefore, although the devil has influence in this world, and is warring against us as Christians, we know the end result, his demise! That said, we are to put on the whole armor of God and stand firm against the enemy. We talked through all the components of the armor of God, noting that the very first piece, the belt of truth, is essential for all of the other items. If we don’t know the truth of Christ, and we don’t hold to the truth of Christ, then we’ve lost the battle.
All in all, last night was a call to take up arms and fight, standing firm in the Lord, not giving an inch to the enemy. I told the students that, even though they’re young, they are in the midst of a war, and have a very important role as those that stand up for God in this current darkness, and bring the gospel forth with their feet and with their mouths to reach those that are lost.
Next week we’ll have review and game week (a week early) and then we’ll start a short series on Christian Purity before the end of the year. My hope is to send the students into the Summer fighting for the purity of their eyes and hearts. We’ll have our School’s Out Scream on Wednesday, June 20th, where we’ll BBQ and Celebrate God’s goodness over the school year (and the end of the school year!) I’ll have a Summer Youth Calendar out to you all in the upcoming weeks.