In his letter to the Ephesian church, the apostle Paul urges Christians to “put on the whole armor of God” (Eph. 6:11). Most of the components of the armor he describes are pieces of protection such as the “breastplate” of righteousness, the “shield” of faith, and the “helmet” of salvation. However, there is one component that is more than just a piece of protection; it is a weapon you can use to attack. Paul describes that weapon as the “sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Eph. 6:17, NKJV). You see, God wants us to actively use His word as a weapon against the devil, and one way we do that is by declaring His word.
Most Christians understand about the importance of reading the Bible to know God’s truth. Today, I’d like to encourage you to take it a step further from reading the Bible to confessing the Bible. “Faith comes be hearing and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). One way we hear God’s word is through the preaching of the Bible at church. We feel better after a church service, because our faith has been built as we’ve heard the word of God. That’s great, but sometimes when we’re all alone, we have to preach to ourselves! Sometimes, you need to hear yourself declaring God’s word.
When I was in college at Oral Roberts University, I heard a sermon preached by Pastor Billy Joe Daugherty about the importance of confessing God’s word. He encouraged us to pick out some of our favorite scriptures from the Bible, write them down, and confess them out loud to ourselves every day. So, I did that. I started writing down a few scriptures in a notebook and quoting them out loud to myself every morning. Every time I did, I would feel myself being strengthened in my spirit, and I found new energy to move forward with God’s call on my life.
Before long, I quoted the same scriptures enough that I had them memorized, and then I could confess them anywhere at any time of the day. Something as mundane as a walk across campus turned into my own personal revival service, because I confessed God’s word as I went! You see, the word of God is “living and powerful,” and it gives you strength as you declare it for yourself (Heb. 4:12). I also found that declaring God’s truth throughout the day was a great way to renew my mind, keeping my thoughts in line with the will of God.
Jesus declared, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4). Just as we need food for daily strength, we need the word of God to keep us going! Take some time this week to write down a few scriptures that are meaningful to you, and then say them out loud several times to yourself. Keep doing that every day, and see what God will do. Let His word encourage and strengthen you.