Shoes, like the belt, may initially seem superfluous in a discussion about spiritual armor. They’re great to have, sure, but aren’t they more of a convenience than a necessity? Are they really that important? Our spiritual shoes matter and we need to make sure we’re equipped with them before we get onto the battlefield.
What purpose do shoes serve? In the Armor of God, the shoes are the preparation of the Gospel of Peace. Imagine a fully armed soldier. He has his sword, his shield, his helmet, his breastplate and his belt…but his feet are completely bare. The picture probably seems strange, and it should! Just by thinking about it, we can tell something is missing.
But the problem goes beyond just looking odd. A shoeless soldier could run into real trouble in the heat of battle. Unless he is fighting on Astroturf, he is going to encounter some debris. It may be nothing more than twigs and pebbles, but to a bare foot that can cause serious pain—and one of the last things you want to deal with in the middle of a fight is worrying about where you step.
Bible study is always broken into three major steps: Observation, Interpretation, and Application. If the third step were to be boiled down to its simplest point, or its lowest common denominator, it would be WALK. We are not expected to run; no sprinting necessary – but neither are we expected to stand still – JUST WALK.
In short, shoes allow us to step freely and without fear while we turn our full attention to the battle at hand.
Ephesians 6:15 – The Whole Armor: Gospel of Peace
This is post #3 of 5 in the series “Ephesians 6: The Whole Armor” (http://shortdailydevotions.com/devotions/ephesians-615-the-whole-armor-gospel-of-peace)
Daily Devotional Bible Verse:
“and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.” (Ephesians 6:15 ESV)
God loves people. In fact, God proved he loves us by actually becoming one of us. Jesus left the very place everyone from every era has literally been dying to get to; Heaven. Jesus left an eternal place for a temporal one, left a place of satisfaction for a place of wanting, left a place of peace and majesty for a place of war and shadows. The earth is beautiful to be sure, but it is only a dim reflection of heaven’s wonder. Jesus willingly came and died here to make peace between us and God (Colossians 1:20). Our God values men and women and children, no matter the shape, size, or color. Human beings have intrinsic value and worth as we are created in God’s image (Genesis 1:27).
In fact, his love for us is so great it is unfathomable (Ephesians 3:19). This kind of love fundamentally alters those who encounter it, and should not allow us to view another human being in the same way again. You know your mailman? God knew him before Elvis ever sang a note. And your co-worker who lacks obvious social graces? Yeah, he loves her too. The Gospel of Peace isn’t a dime-store, sappy love story, though. This love comes from the same One who said “Go, and sin no more” (John 8), from the same who calls us to radical repentance. These “Gospel Shoes” are a brilliant metaphor then; think, do you often leave your house without your shoes? No? Then we shouldn’t leave without our hearts primed with the “readiness given by the gospel of peace.” Those around us should know we are Christians by the peace we bring into our relationships of those around us.
Every time you put on your shoes, put on a readiness for the gospel of peace.