“…and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.” (Ephesians 6:15)
Let’s see; awesome belt…check. Indestructible breastplate…check. Footwear…hmm…
I’ll be honest; even with the fantastic pieces of armor already described, I’d be a bit wary about setting foot onto a battlefield without something to cover my tootsies. We stand peering out of our tent flaps, reluctant to step forward. Our motivation comes in the form of steel-pleated boots that God straps onto our soles (or souls?); supple, flexible footwear that comes straight from the forges of the Master Craftsman (Psalm 139:14).
What gives God’s warriors the motivation to charge forward into a world filled with darkness and tribulation? It can only be the “gospel of peace” to which Paul refers. Knowing what God has done for us, how can a believer do anything but leap into action when an opportunity to share the Gospel presents itself? As Martin Luther said, “In he have faith, the believer cannot be restrained. He betrays himself. He breaks out. He confesses and teaches this gospel to the people at the risk of life itself.”
The Gospel gives us peace; peace with God through repentance and forgiveness, peace with our fellow man through Christian unity and reconciliation, and peace within our own hearts through a right relationship with our Maker and a sense of purpose in our lives. It’s also true that the Gospel will continue to cause division, conflict, and controversy in a sinful world because many people will reject the good news of Jesus’ death and resurrection. However, there could be no hope for peace of any sort without this saving Gospel message, and we would have neither the courage nor the desire to daily go forth into spiritual battle.
Most especially in the Easter season and throughout the year as well, Christ’s sacrifice of love urges and compels us to show love to our neighbors. “We love because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19). We can “lay down our lives” for those around us by abandoning selfish interests and recklessly proclaiming the good news of Christ crucified for our transgressions. May our feet be always ready to stand against the darkness of unbelief and despair, to bring light to the prisoners in the enemy’s dungeon, and to rush to the aid of those in need of spiritual assistance.
“How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” (Romans 10:15)
Prayer: Dear Lord, give me a heart that is daily rejoicing in the good news of Your Son’s all-atoning sacrifice. Keep my feet ever ready to perform whatever good works of love You have prepared for me. Thank you for the peace that comes from knowing I have been reconciled to You and can come to You in prayer, through Jesus Christ, my Lord. Amen.