6/14/2010

Notes from Sunday Service: 6/6/10 The Breastplate of Righteousness

THIS IS LONG BUT GOOD!!!

Wear the truth belt.  Truth is an absolute standard by which reality is measured.  Truth is absolute it never changes whether you like it or not, want it or not.  The enemy is able to get in because we have truth fluctuation.  Once he can detour you from truth he can detour you from what God has for you in life.  Truth is God based knowledge.
In order to win in the spiritual arena of life you’ve got to start in the physical arena of life.  You’ve got to see things from Gods perspective on the matter.  
Breastplate of Righteousness. Righteousness is that standard that God uses to measure what is acceptable to him.  The opposite of rightness is wrongness.  The truth tells me what right is.  My applying the truth is righteousness.  
God’s righteous standard is not negotiable nor adjustable.  In basketball the hoop is 10 ft high.  You can lower that, but then you’ve not met the standard.
Many people don’t like God’s standard so they lower HIS standard and think that because they were able to do something at the lower standard then they’ve accomplished something.  The reality is all have fallen short of the standard (Rom. 3:23) that God has set.  
What does righteousness have to do with a spiritual battle?  Simply unrighteousness attracts demons.  Unrighteousness is attracting the demonic realm to you.  Example:  You leave garbage out in the house too long and roaches feel invited.  You didn’t say roaches come, you just kept garbage available. When garbage was available then the roaches, ants, maggots called others and said we’ve been invited.  
You’re not only fighting the garbage (sin) but now you’re fighting the demons that were attracted to it.  They will go where ever the garbage is.  
So in Eph. 6:14 he says put on the breastplate of righteousness as part of the armor of God because the demons and demonic realm have a legal right to you when unrighteousness is operating in your life.  A problem over time becomes an addiction because the garbage attracted the demons, the demons exacerbated and infected the garbage so that now the garbage has become worse than when you started with.  Now you are dealing with spiritual warfare.  
It gets worse:  because God doesn’t just judge the action of unrighteousness, he also judges the motivation. (See Matthew 5: 27-28)
Even if you outwardly look ok, God is looking at your heart.  If your outward action was good and decent, but your motivation or heart condition was wrong, you are judged according to your heart condition. 
Then we try to work this thing out ourselves.  We end up doing behavior modification and righteousness management.  We know we aren’t supposed to do certaing things even though we really want to.  Sometimes we don’t do things out of fear of the consequences yet in our heart we really want to do it.  So we go into managing our righteousness...it’s called religion.  If we do all that seems to be right then we are living righteously.  The only problem is God is looking at our hearts.  We are settling for paper armor (positive thinking, new years resolutions, trying harder, etc.).  This armor doesn’t work.  The requirement for keeping away the wicked one though is that I must have on the breastplate of righteousness.  So how do I get this armor and it not be fake?
Most of us are seeking righteousness in the wrong direction.  We are trying to change our outside and hope that our inside gets better.  This is called backward Christian soldier.  The breastplate of righteousness is a chest protector.  It protects the heart.  Your heart pumps life throughout your body.  God wants us to put on the breastplate and protect our hearts so that it can pump real life throughout our bodies. 
Alot of stuff we are doing it, we are only doing it because we were told as Christians this is what we are supposed to be doing, but we actually hate doing it.  To be able to do what we are supposed to do and we are actually loving doing it, this is a sign of true Christianity.  
You have three parts to you...Body, Soul, Spirit.  Your body only does what your soul tells it to do.  Your soul is your personality.  It’s made up of your mind, will, emotions, and consciouns.  When you die, your body does nothing, your soul is what goes to heaven if you are a Christian because that is the real you.  
The problem is that your soul has been distorted by sin.  You can’t trust you.  Your soul has been distorted by how you were raised, television, friends, society, radio, things you’ve read, etc.  All of it wasn’t wrong, but enough of it was to mess you up.  So we have messed up bodies doing messed up things because we have messed up souls telling it to.  Your body will only do what your soul tells it.  
So we have to understand that our soul is not saved.  When you get saved, God immediately saves your spirit.  2 Cor. 5:17 says if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.  However, we still think the same thoughts and do the same things.....that’s because this scripture is talking about your spirit.  It immediately becomes saved and new.  The spirit within you is now perfect.  It is placed within your soul which is in your body.  The person you are supposed to be is in your spirit.  The person you were born is your soul.  The house  they both live in is your body.  Your goal is to change your body, but NOT by changing your body.  Your goal is to change your body by changing your soul.  You can only change your soul by listening to the spirit within you.  Your spirit will only speak to your soul as your soul agrees with your spirit.  Your spirit is getting information and life changing instructions through the Holy Spirit and the Word of God.  
Religion will make you tired.... You’ll want to give up or just go through the motions. 
Transformation takes place when your soul listens to the spirit that has listened to God.  
Many of us are just managing our lives instead of getting to the spiritual infection that’s causing the problem.  Heart transformation!!!
Eph. 4:20-24 tells you how to have this heart transformation.  Your spirit is perfect and it dwells within your soul.  The spirit feeds the soul and the soul feeds the body.  Your soul is being transformed, your body will be transformed when you get to heaven.  God will not allow the unrighteousness of your soul to invade your spirit.  You’ve got to keep righteousness tethered to the truth...the truth is the Word of God.  The Word of God tells you the truth about yourself.  It describes those things in your life according to the Word of God.  We want God to say we are ok when we aren’t.  We want God to make us feel good.  2 Tim. 4:3-4.  We are to dwell within the Word as a woman does in front of a mirror.  Men just glance, but a woman gaze in the mirror at themselves.   
When your soul begins to agree with what God has to say about things, your spirit will see this and will grab hold of that truth.  Your spirit will then begin to release life throughout your body and your body will begin to act upon that.

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