By Martyn-Lloyd Jones
THERE IS NOTHING that is more urgently important for all who claim the name of Christian, than to grasp and to understand the teaching of this particular section of Scripture. I say those "who claim the name of Christian," because the Apostle's words are obviously addressed to Christian people, and to Christian people only. They have no message for those who are not Christians; indeed nobody else can understand them. The world today ridicules this kind of statement. It does not believe in a spiritual realm at all. It is even doubtful about the being of God; it has no faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; still less, therefore, does it believe that there are "principalities and powers, the rulers of the darkness of this world, spiritual wickedness even in high (or in heavenly) places." Such words are meaningless to the world; it has no appreciation of their value and importance.
But to the Christian the statement is not only full of significance, it is also full of help and of real encouragement; and, let me repeat, there is surely no theme more urgently important to all Christians at the present time than just this. I refer, of course, to the whole state of life, the whole state of the world, and to all the difficulty of living, and especially living the Christian life in these confused times in which we find ourselves.
Not that I suggest that life has ever been easy in this world for the Christian. It was not so for the early Christians. And today, in some respects, the problem is more acute and more urgent, perhaps, than it has ever been. There was a time, until comparatively recently, when at least a man's home was more or less shut off from the world; but now the world comes into the home in many different ways, not only with the newspapers but with the television and the wireless and other media. Thus the fight of faith becomes particularly difficult and strenuous for the Christian at such a time; and in addition to all this there is the general strain of the times and anxiety of the hour.
Called to Battle
It is because of such considerations that we spent so much time in a previous volume in analyzing and considering Paul's great statement. We were occupied there in dealing with "the wiles of the devil," trying to understand what it means when it says that we are "wrestling, not against flesh and blood" (in ourselves, or in any other people), but against these spiritual powers and potentates, these principalities, these unseen hordes of wickedness that are at the back of evil, controlling the minds of evil men and all their activities, and that are set against us in order to try to defeat us, to spoil our Christian lives and bring the whole of the Gospel into disrepute. Such occupation on our part was essential. A man who does not understand the nature of the problem he is confronting is a man who is already doomed to failure. Christian people are like first-year college students-they think at first that every subject is quite simple, there is no difficulty. Well, we know what is likely to happen to such when they face an examination! The first thing you have to do is to understand the nature and the character of your problem. So we have to realize that we are called, in the Christian life, to a battle, not to a life of ease; to a battle, to a warfare, to a wrestle, to a struggle. Already we have looked in detail at the varied, almost endless ways in which the devil in his wiliness and subtlety tries to trap and to ensnare, to confuse and to confound the Christian. For the Christian to be forewarned as to the character and strategy of the enemy is absolutely essential, for to be forewarned is to be forearmed, and that in itself is half the battle.
But let us remember that it is only half the battle. Were we to leave it at that we should all undoubtedly be depressed. We would say, "Life is sufficient enough as it is without your dragging out all these things. You show us that the problem is such that no man is adequate to deal with it. You emphasize that we wrestle against terrible powers and principalities. Who is sufficient for these things? Who can stand against such massed hordes of evil, with all their subtlety and malign power?" To consider the problem in isolation, even though absolutely essential, could lead to no result except that we should all feel depressed and completely and entirely hopeless. But, thank God, the Gospel is always realistic. It never hides any of the truth, it never gives a false impression. It is not a true Gospel that gives us the impression that the Christian life is easy, and that there are no problems to be faced. That is not the New Testament teaching. The New Testament is most alarming at first, indeed terrifying, as it shows us the problems by which we are confronted. But follow it-go on! It does not stop halfway, it goes on to this addition, this second half; and here it shows us the way in which, though that is the truth concerning the battle, we can be enabled to wage it, and not only to wage it, but to triumph in it. It shows us that we are meant to be "more than conquerors."
Confronting the Problem
So the Apostle goes on to show us this second half-, and he does so in his own characteristic manner. He even puts this before he states the problem. He says, "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that" (in order that)-then he introduces the problem. Here, I say, is something for which we should thank God always. Here, and here alone, we are told that, despite all that is against us, whether in realms above or in the world in which we live with all its strains and stresses, as Christian people we can be enabled to triumph, to rejoice in the midst of it all, and to know that victory is assured. That is the matter to which we now turn.
What is offered us as we find ourselves, as Christian people, facing all this-this wrestling, this struggling, this combat? You notice that there are just two things. First, "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might"; second, 'Take unto you the whole armor of God."
As we come to look at these two things there are some preliminary comments that I have to make. The first is that both these are necessary. We are not to take one without the other. The Apostle says both, and we have to do both. We shall have occasion to repeat that constantly as we go along. But notice the order in which he puts them. He does not tell you to put on the armor first, and then to be strong in the Lord. No, it is the other way around: "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might"; then, "Take unto you the whole armor of God." There is a very real significance in the order. I will have occasion later to show its significance and the importance of following it as a practical issue.
There is clearly a relationship between the two factors. Let me just hint at what will be developed as we proceed. It is this: that so often people take just one or the other of these factors and therefore make shipwreck of the faith. There are some who say, "All you need to do is to hand it over to the Lord and rely on His strength." They never say anything about "the whole armor of God"-that is left out completely. There are others who put their whole emphasis on the putting on of the armor of God, as if they could wield it themselves. They forget their absolute dependence upon the power of the Lord, and His might and His strength. We see then that there are several interesting matters in the mere presentation of the two things which are essential to a triumphant living of the Christian life.
The Source of Our Strength
Let us start, then, with the first-"Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might." Here is a great order issued by this mighty captain, the Apostle Paul-an order for the day. Here is a word sent out to the Christian army gathered together, with the enemy there in position facing it. Here is the word that comes from this great leader who himself had had long experience in warfare personally, and who, as he reminds us so often, had the care of all the churches upon him, and had seen at first hand the machinations of the evil one against God's people. Here then is a great order for the day-"Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might." Hold on to this, do not forget it. In the heat and the thick of the battle later on in the day, whatever happens, never forget, never lose sight of, this great guiding and controlling principle.
But what does it mean, and how are we to do it? It is a resounding phrase. To read it, to repeat it, is not enough. We like singing the words of the hymn, "Put on the Gospel Armor." But what does it mean in practice? Let us investigate the matter. Christianity is not a form of psychology. You do not just walk along the road saying, "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might," using it as some kind of incantation, or auto-suggestion, repeating the phrases to yourself. That is not Christianity at all! It is true of the cults, of course; it is the psychological method. You repeat the phrases such as, "Every day, and in every way, I am getting better and better." You persuade yourself, and you think less and less about your health, and you therefore begin to feel better. Up to a point it works, but only up to a point.
But in any case, as I say, it is not the Christian message. So often we are in danger of abusing the Scriptures in this way. We use them as mere phrases in that manner, or lightheartedly we sing our hymns, and we feel better for the time being. But the question is, How do we stand up to temptations when we are in the street outside, and what are we like at home? When you turn Scripture into a drug, into something which gives you a temporary relief without your knowing why or how, the effect does not last. It gives a temporary feeling of exhilaration, but fails you when you are in the struggle and in the heat of the battle.
What, then, is the true application of the Apostle's precept? The first thing to realize is the need to be strong because of the power of the enemy. Never underestimate that power. The Bible always calls us to face the enemy and to realize that he is, as Peter says, "as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour." We are told that the archangel Michael dared not speak lightly or loosely to him, and when he debated with him concerning the body of Moses he did not bring any "railing accusation" against him. All the archangel ventured to say was, "The Lord rebuke thee" (Jude 9). The enemy is terribly powerful and full of wiles and of subtlety and of guile; he can even "transform himself into an angel of light" (2 Cor. 11: 14).
Another reason, and a very practical one from the human side, is that if you are to be able to stand, and withstand in the evil day, you need this strength. "The evil day!" Though the Christian life in one sense is always the same kind of life, there are variations; there are evil days, some days are worse than others; they are exceptionally bad. In general at the present time we are living in a very "evil" day. It is evil in every respect. I am not only thinking of international tensions; it is an evil day because evil and sin are so powerfully organized, so deeply entrenched; it is an evil day because of the confusion in the Church herself which sometimes seems to deny not only the whole of the Gospel but even belief in the being of God Himself. It is not easy to be a Christian at a time like this when you have men in positions of high authority in the Church talking about "meeting atheists in heaven!" Christians are being confused by these things, particularly, perhaps, young Christians. The devil is unusually busy and active, creating this uncertainty about the essentials of the faith and producing this utter confusion-"What is the Gospel? What is not the Gospel?" Undoubtedly we live in a very evil day; and if we are to withstand at such a time as this, there is only one way; and it is the way the Apostle teaches us here. We need this power, and the whole armor of God; and then we shall be able to stand. Thank God that this is so. Though the confusion is terrible, those who believe the truth still can stand. Do not be disheartened, do not be discouraged, do not be misled, do not be put off. You may be standing alone, perhaps, but you can still be enabled to stand though the days are so cruelly evil and vile and foul.
But there are other reasons which should encourage us all to seek this strength and this power. Why should I be "strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might"? I answer: I wish to be strong in order to avoid personal failure; for I know that, when I do fail and fall into sin, I become miserable and unhappy. This is true of all Christians. So, to save yourself from the misery that is the inevitable consequence of any failure in the Christian life, "be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might."
But I will give you a much higher reason than the fear of personal failure. "Be strong" because you are who you are, because you are what you are. We are individuals in this matter of salvation but we are not isolated units. We are members severally of the body of Christ; we belong to Him, to God's family. Remember this always, that the Lord Jesus Christ is "not ashamed to call us brethren" (Heb. 2:11). Remember also that "God is not ashamed to be called (your) God" (Heb. 11:16). The Name of God is upon us, the Name of Christ is upon us. Why should I be strong? Well, for His sake even more than for my own sake. In a sense this is an alarming thought, and yet it is one of the most glorious truths we can ever realize about ourselves-that the reputation, as it were, of Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is in our hands, and any failure in us brings the great and holy Name into disrepute. We are not isolated individuals, we are one in this great and mighty army.
The world knows how to respond to these appeals, does it not? Nelson knew exactly what he was doing on the morning of Trafalgar: "England expects that every man this day will do his duty." Certainly! The name of the country! Multiply that by infinity and see that you and I have no right to be weak because our failure not only involves ourselves. The whole family in heaven and in earth is involved with us. We are representatives.
It is not only that we may live a happier life that I am calling attention to this text. Let us abandon this purely subjective approach, let us learn to look at things from the standpoint of the Church of the living God, this great army with banners; let us think of Him who is the Captain and Leader of our salvation. And let us remember that we belong to Him, and that anything that happens to us inevitably involves Him also.
So, finally, I put the matter thus. There is no better way of giving a proof of the truth of the Gospel than that we should "be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might," than that we should triumph and prevail. To live aright is difficult, and when we see someone who is succeeding, someone who can stand against the enticements and the insinuations of evil, someone who is not carried away off his feet by the popular thing, someone who stands steadfastly for truth and for everything that is worthy, we are greatly encouraged. It undoubtedly has a great effect on those who are looking on.
We are all being watched at the present time. The world is most unhappy, men and women do not know what to do, they do not know where to turn. When they see someone who seems to be calm and steadfast, someone who is not utterly bewildered at a time like this, someone who seems to have an insight into it all, and who can see beyond it all, they look and they say, "What is this? What is that person's secret?" And so you become an evangelist by just standing and being "strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might." You are not carried away by the flood, you do not do things because everyone else is doing them, you have principles of your own, and you are ready to stand for them and to suffer for them. That has often been the means, under God's blessing, of awakening others and convicting them of sin, and causing them to begin to inquire after God.
In our daily lives, whatever our earthly calling, we all live in some kind of circle; we are surrounded by people who are blinded by the devil and carried along in evil ways by him at his will (2 Tim. 2:26). You never know when the mere fact that you are just "standing" may arrest attention and open a door of opportunity for the saving Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
There, then, are some reasons and preliminary considerations why we must be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might.
The Reality of Our Weakness
In the second place, we have to realize our own weakness and our need of help. That is the presupposition behind what the Apostle is saying here. He is not only concerned about this because of the power of the enemy, he is equally concerned because of our own weakness, our own lack of strength; and, again, the best way of realizing this impotency is to understand something of the power of the enemy. There is ample teaching in the Bible to bring you to that knowledge. Go back to the very beginning of the Bible. You find there is a man called Adam who was sinless and perfect. But he is confronted by the devil, and the manifestation of "the wiles of the devil." Though Adam was perfect, and had lived a life of fellowship and communion with God, he fell; and he fell so easily! The subtlety of the enemy with his insinuation that God was against man, that God was unfair to man, was too much for Adam and he fell. When the devil launches his attack, what is man, even perfect man made in the image of God? Adam fell. And if Adam in that perfect state fell, who are we to stand?
But let us go further. Look at the Old Testament saints, all of them, the patriarchs, the godly kings, and the prophets. They all fell, not one of them could stand up to the devil. He is "the strong man armed, that keepeth his goods at peace." All men have failed, they have all "sinned and come short of the glory of God"; they have succumbed to "the wiles of the devil."
This has also been the universal testimony of all Christian saints, the greatest saints of the centuries. It is one of the hallmarks of the true saint, that he never gives the impression that the Christian life is an easy one-never! The man who gives the impression that it is easy has confused something else with Christianity; he has a shortcut which he imagines brings him to a place where everything is quite simple. But that is never the Christian way. The greatest saints have always testified to the fierceness of the battle, to their own weakness, to their own ability. They have mourned over this. Let us then pay heed to what this great "cloud of witnesses" is saying to us today.
But let me commend to you also the study of your own experience. If you feel that you are a very strong Christian, let me ask you why you have failed so much and why you still fail? What happens to your resolutions and resolves? Why do you so often find yourself in the place of repentance? Why are you sometimes attacked with feelings of utter hopelessness and almost despair? To what is it due? It is all due to the plain fact of our weakness; it is because we are insufficient and fallible.
But we must face this honestly. It is not enough just to say in general, "Yes, I know the enemy is very strong, as you say, and I am weak." We have to persuade ourselves of our weakness. This is half the battle. We need to know that we are ill; in other words we need to indulge in a great deal of self-examination. That is why people pay such slight heed to our text; that is why we know so little about what it is to stand, and to be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might; we have never realized our own need. 'They that are whole have no need of a physician." That was the chief trouble with the Pharisees. They thought they were right with God; they did not go to the doctor; there was nothing wrong with them. We do not go to the doctor as long as we feel that all is well; we have to realize that we are "sick." But that means examination, self-examination. In that way only shall we discover the elements of weakness that are in us inherently, and that render us incapable of fighting the battle against sin and Satan.
Another thing we have to realize is that mere principles of morality are not sufficient for us. The world has always been interested in what it calls "the good life." Philosophers have always been interested in the subject; they have written about it, talked about it, and argued about it. But the trouble has been that they were never able to practice it. Principles of morality are good as far as they go, but they are not enough; you can read books on ethics and can wax eloquent on these matters, but it is a very different thing to put them into practice. "To will is present with me, but how to perform that which is good I know not," said the Apostle (Rom. 7:18). 1 see that a certain thing is right, but the problem is, "How am I to do it?" And it is when you really face the problem that you begin to realize the extent of your weakness.
Furthermore, human will-power alone is not enough. Will-power is excellent and we should always be using it; but it is not enough. A desire to live a good life is not enough. Obviously we should all have that desire, but it will not guarantee success. So let me put it thus: Hold on to your principles of morality and ethics, use your willpower to the limit, pay great heed to every noble, uplifting desire that is in you; but realize that these things alone are not enough, that they will never bring you to the desired place. We have to realize that all our best is totally inadequate, that a spiritual battle must be fought in a spiritual manner. This has been put well in a hymn by Isaac Watts:
From Thee, the overflowing spring,
Our souls shall drink a fresh supply,
While such as trust their native strength
Shall melt away, and droop, and die.
That is true! Remember also the words of another hymn:
The arm of flesh will fail you,
You dare not trust your own.
Here we have the very beginning of an understanding of this whole matter. The problem is not just a problem in moral living. That is the limit of the State's concern with our persons. The State knows nothing about the spiritual background, for it knows nothing about the devil and "the principalities and powers." And that is why it continues to believe that education can really solve the problem and reform persons. That is why it evokes the aid of psychotherapy and various other expedients in prisons. But the more it does so the more the problem seems to increase. It is all because men do not realize the spiritual character of the problem.
You and I have to realize that the living of the Christian life does not follow automatically upon conversion. Many a man, having come into the Christian life through regeneration, through a true experience, has then tried to live the Christian life in the old terms. He thinks that he needs the act of God in Christ to save him, but he seems to leave it at that. He feels that henceforward he is going to live the Christian life by his own power; he has a new understanding so now he is going to live this life. But it cannot be done! This is the road along which people "melt away, and droop, and die," because they are trusting to nothing but their "native strength." On the contrary, this is a battle that has to be fought in a spiritual manner and with spiritual understanding.
The Meaning of His Might
That leads us to the third general principle. Having realized that I am to be strong and that in and of myself I am essentially weak, because I am still in the flesh and that it is still true that "the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh, and these are contrary one to the other"-realizing that all that is still true of me, and that I am here in this warfare, and up against this terrible power, what is the next thing? It is to realize that the Lord is strong, that He is mighty, and, as the Old Testament reminds us, that "The name of the Lord is a strong tower." His very Name is strong. The Name represents Him, who He is and what He is. And the first thing, therefore, we have to realize is the greatness of His strength. That is what the Apostle is saying to the Ephesians and to us.
Listen to the words; examine them in detail. He says, "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might." Do we realize its full significance? What does he mean by "the power of His might"? The basic thing, obviously, is the "might." We are directed to "the power" of His "might." The difference between power and might is that might means power and strength as an enduement; might means inherent power, something a man is given. Think of a very strong, muscular man. The "might" is that man's inherent muscular strength and power. Power means the manifestation of that might; the might is there as a potential, as something inherent, now manifesting itself, showing its efficacy, showing that it can be effectual. It means this great reserve of strength and power is actually in operation, doing something; not the enduement itself but the proof of the fact that you have the enduement.
So the Apostle uses the two terms, and it is important that we should look at both. He says, "Be strong in the Lord, and in the might of His strength"; so you start by reminding yourself of His strength. Look at Him, he says, look at His power. You have been looking at the enemy and you have seen his strength; you have looked at yourself and you are trembling in your weakness and in your ineffectiveness; well, now, he says, look at Him, "Be strong in the Lord."
To be "strong in the Lord" you must remember "the might of His power"-"the might of His strength." Express it whichever way you like, but look at Him and realize all the reserves of strength and power that are in Him. That is what these New Testament Epistles are saying almost everywhere. "In him," says the Apostle Paul to the Colossians, "dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." It is there in Him. "In whom," he says again, "God has hid all the treasures of wisdom and of knowledge" (2:3). They are all there. They constitute this might, this tremendous inherent strength and power. To be strong in the Lord means meditating about Him and His strength. It is not just a phrase, an incantation, a formula. It means that you sit down and remind yourself of these things, and you look at Him, and you remind yourself of some of the things that are true concerning Him.
Incidentally, that we may do just this is one of the main reasons for reading Scriptures regularly, and reading the four Gospels in particular. We should not read the Scriptures merely in order that we may say that we have read our daily portion, and so have done our duty. That is no reason for reading the Scriptures. I am not attacking systematic reading; I am a great advocate of systematic reading. AH I am saying is that you should be careful that the devil in his wiliness does not come in and make you content with a mere mechanical reading of the Scriptures without really looking at them, and meditating upon them without realizing what they are saying, and without drawing lessons for yourself, and praying about the exercise. It takes time to read Scripture properly. It is very easy to read a number of verses and rush off to catch your bus or train. That is not reading the Scriptures; that may be quite useless. You must stop and look and think. So go back to the Gospels and look at Him and "the power of His strength."
Where do I see His strength? I see it in His life. I see Him here in this world in the "likeness of sinful flesh." I see Him in the same world as I am in. I see that obviously He knew hunger and thirst and physical weakness and tiredness, that He knew what it was to be disappointed with people. He has gone through it all. And yet what I see, as I look at Him, is that He stands, He always stands. There is never a wavering, still less a failing or a faltering or a falling. He stood, with the world and the flesh and the devil-everything-against Him. He stood. Therefore as I look at His life I see at once One who walked through this world without deviating in any respect. He just went on steadily.
I see even more than that, I see it in all His miracles. I see it especially in the miracles in which He cast out devils. Here is One to whom they were not a problem. Here is One who can command the devils. He can exorcise them. He speaks with power and with authority and the devils have to come cringing to Him, asking Him to spare them, not to cast them into the deep that they might be destroyed. Here is a Master. They come to Him and say, 'We know you are the Holy One of God." Here is the One who, when the devils are operating powerfully, with a word could drive them out. The disciples could not do that. Look at the boy at the foot of the Mount of Transfiguration. The father had brought the boy to the disciples and they had done their best. But they could not help, and the poor boy remained a victim of Satan's power. But at a word from our Lord the devil is driven out and the boy is healed and is restored to his father. There we see His power in operation, there we see something of "the power of His might." He is the master of "the principalities and powers, the rulers of the darkness of this world, the spiritual wickedness in high places" (Eph. 3:10).
But we must go still further and observe this "power of His might" as it is revealed in His own temptation. He was tried directly by the devil himself, not by some of the emissaries, not by one or the other of these principalities or powers, but by the devil himself with all his wiles. Here the devil himself takes charge of the situation because he realizes that it is the biggest problem he has ever confronted. So he came to our Lord and tempted Him forty days and forty nights in the wilderness and on other occasions; but he was utterly and entirely defeated. With the words of Scripture our Lord repels him, and the devil falls back defeated, waiting for another season. But he completely failed in spite of many efforts.
That is what we must dwell upon and consider. This is not just a detail or an incident in the life of our Lord which helps you to understand His Person. It does that, of course, and attests His Person; but now, says the Apostle: Make practical use of it. Take it up, take hold of that power yourself There, you see, He met in single combat the devil with all his power in operation, and He easily defeated him, therefore "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might." The power was always and already in Him; and when the devil comes He just shows it, He just lets a little of it out, as it were, and the devil is immediately repulsed. Lay hold of that, says the Apostle.
James, in exactly the same way, and grasping this point says, "Resist the devil and he will flee from you" (4:7). That is the way it works out. But it does not work out until you and I are quite certain about Christ's power, and really do know something of "the power of His might," the inherent power that is in Him. "In Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." He is both God and Man. He cannot fail. He did not fail.
Finally, of course, the Lord proves and demonstrates His power on the Cross and in the Resurrection. The Cross seems to be the day of the power of evil. The powers of evil thought that to be the case, as also did the devil and all his hosts. The world, too, had similar thoughts. They reviled Him, they laughed at Him, they jeered, "Thou savest others, come down, save Thyself." They thought that He could not do so, and that the devil had defeated Him! But what was happening there was that "He was taking these principalities and powers" (says Paul in Col. 2:15) "and putting them to an open shame, triumphing over them in it" (by it). That is, He was triumphing over them when they thought that they had defeated Him. "Now is the judgment of this world," He says beforehand, looking at the Cross. "Now is the prince of this world cast out (cast forth)" (John 12:31). So look at the Cross and meditate upon it. This is the supreme paradox: He appears to be dying in weakness, but do you see the inherent strength there, do you see this might of His, do you see the power of the Godhead there, turning even that into the vanquishing of the devil and the setting of His people free-a glorious victorious triumph? Look at it and see just that!
Then go on and look at the Resurrection. He "bursts asunder the bands of death," triumphs over the last enemy, and the ultimate effects of sin and evil. He is master completely over all these powers that are set against us, He defeats them all. He rises, He ascends into heaven, 'leading captivity captive." He is the conqueror over everything that is set against us.
This is not some psychological formula that you and I can apply. But it all comes back to this-to know Him! You will never know power in your life until you know Him. So we must get to know Him. We shall find when we consider the various portions of the "armor" that they are nearly all directed to that end, to know Him, to know about Him and the truth concerning Him. We start with that here-"in the Lord, and in the power of His might."
Do we realize something of this? Do we know anything about it? Forget yourself for the time being. Look at Him and realize the truth about Him. Then realize that His power is available for you. That is the key to it all. So we must look at Him objectively as He is portrayed to us, as He reveals Himself to us. Then we must realize that we belong to One who is "the Lord" and that "all the fullness of the Godhead" is in Him, that there is invincible might and power in Him, and that it is a might and power that not only remains potential, but also becomes actual. It shows itself, it manifests itself on our behalf and also in us. So here we begin to look at this saving word that enables us even in this evil day to stand, to withstand, to be strong, to fight the battle of the Lord, and to bring honor and glory to His great and holy Name.