Take a Stand (Ephesians 6:10-24, Isaiah 11:1-9, Isaiah 59:1-21)

Bernard Gabbott, Sunday, 24 November 2019
Part of the Ephesians series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

Take a Stand
Eph 6:10-24

Tags: Ephesians

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Ephesians 6:10–24 (Listen)

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.

21 So that you also may know how I am and what I am doing, Tychicus the beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord will tell you everything. 22 I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage your hearts.

23 Peace be to the brothers, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Grace be with all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with love incorruptible.

(ESV)

Isaiah 11:1–9 (Listen)

11:1   There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse,
    and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.
  And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him,
    the Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
    the Spirit of counsel and might,
    the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD.
  And his delight shall be in the fear of the LORD.
  He shall not judge by what his eyes see,
    or decide disputes by what his ears hear,
  but with righteousness he shall judge the poor,
    and decide with equity for the meek of the earth;
  and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth,
    and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked.
  Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist,
    and faithfulness the belt of his loins.
  The wolf shall dwell with the lamb,
    and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat,
  and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together;
    and a little child shall lead them.
  The cow and the bear shall graze;
    their young shall lie down together;
    and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
  The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra,
    and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder's den.
  They shall not hurt or destroy
    in all my holy mountain;
  for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD
    as the waters cover the sea.

(ESV)

Isaiah 59 (Listen)

59:1   Behold, the LORD's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save,
    or his ear dull, that it cannot hear;
  but your iniquities have made a separation
    between you and your God,
  and your sins have hidden his face from you
    so that he does not hear.
  For your hands are defiled with blood
    and your fingers with iniquity;
  your lips have spoken lies;
    your tongue mutters wickedness.
  No one enters suit justly;
    no one goes to law honestly;
  they rely on empty pleas, they speak lies,
    they conceive mischief and give birth to iniquity.
  They hatch adders' eggs;
    they weave the spider's web;
  he who eats their eggs dies,
    and from one that is crushed a viper is hatched.
  Their webs will not serve as clothing;
    men will not cover themselves with what they make.
  Their works are works of iniquity,
    and deeds of violence are in their hands.
  Their feet run to evil,
    and they are swift to shed innocent blood;
  their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity;
    desolation and destruction are in their highways.
  The way of peace they do not know,
    and there is no justice in their paths;
  they have made their roads crooked;
    no one who treads on them knows peace.
  Therefore justice is far from us,
    and righteousness does not overtake us;
  we hope for light, and behold, darkness,
    and for brightness, but we walk in gloom.
10   We grope for the wall like the blind;
    we grope like those who have no eyes;
  we stumble at noon as in the twilight,
    among those in full vigor we are like dead men.
11   We all growl like bears;
    we moan and moan like doves;
  we hope for justice, but there is none;
    for salvation, but it is far from us.
12   For our transgressions are multiplied before you,
    and our sins testify against us;
  for our transgressions are with us,
    and we know our iniquities:
13   transgressing, and denying the LORD,
    and turning back from following our God,
  speaking oppression and revolt,
    conceiving and uttering from the heart lying words.

14   Justice is turned back,
    and righteousness stands far away;
  for truth has stumbled in the public squares,
    and uprightness cannot enter.
15   Truth is lacking,
    and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey.

  The LORD saw it, and it displeased him
    that there was no justice.
16   He saw that there was no man,
    and wondered that there was no one to intercede;
  then his own arm brought him salvation,
    and his righteousness upheld him.
17   He put on righteousness as a breastplate,
    and a helmet of salvation on his head;
  he put on garments of vengeance for clothing,
    and wrapped himself in zeal as a cloak.
18   According to their deeds, so will he repay,
    wrath to his adversaries, repayment to his enemies;
    to the coastlands he will render repayment.
19   So they shall fear the name of the LORD from the west,
    and his glory from the rising of the sun;
  for he will come like a rushing stream,
    which the wind of the LORD drives.
20   “And a Redeemer will come to Zion,
    to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,” declares the LORD.

21 “And as for me, this is my covenant with them,” says the LORD: “My Spirit that is upon you, and my words that I have put in your mouth, shall not depart out of your mouth, or out of the mouth of your offspring, or out of the mouth of your children's offspring,” says the LORD, “from this time forth and forevermore.”

(ESV)