My alarm sounds at 6:00 a.m. every weekday morning. I hit the button to turn it off, roll out of bed, walk into my closet, and grab my robe. I slide one arm after another into each sleeve, then drape the robe around my body. Next, I feel around my waist area for that most curial piece of the robe. The piece that keeps it all together. That piece that allows for the modesty and appropriateness I had in mind when I chose to put it on. That piece that makes the entire garment pointless if it is not there or improperly used. You guessed it: the belt. Yes, I tie that belt around my waist nice and snug. Now I am ready to walk out of the privacy of my bedroom and help to get my family ready for the day. I am free to move about with no concern for exposing a part of myself I’d rather not have exposed.
Roman soldiers also had a belt. It may not have been made of the same material like the one on my morning robe, but it too was a very important piece of their attire. The Roman soldier’s belt was a part of their armor made of heavy leather and a metal band with a protective piece hanging down from the front of it. Like the belt on my robe, it kept the other pieces of the armor in place.
Paul used this image of a soldier ready for battle in his reference to the whole armor of God in Ephesians chapter 6. The belt of truth of the spiritual armor is what holds the sword of the spirit. Therefore, it links truth with the Word of God. In verse 14, when Paul says “stand firm, then with the belt of truth buckled around your waist,” what he is saying is that, just like the belt of a robe and the belt of the soldier’s attire, it is God’s truth that holds everything else in our lives in place.
What is truth anyway? Is it relative? You know, “your truth” may differ from “my truth” which may differ from “their truth.” Absolutely not! According to the Bible, for the Christian, truth is the Word of God itself. Pastor and teacher Tony Evans puts it this way: “Truth is what God says about a matter.”
“Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6), and it is only through Him that we come to God. Truth, therefore, is the most important principle in the life of a Christian. Truth is the piece of defensive armor Paul is encouraging us to place around our waist and use as protection in our battle against the lies of our enemy. Without knowing and applying the truth in our everyday walk through life, we are prone to being “carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming” (Ephesians 4:14).
When we ask them instead of Him; when we do it our way instead of His way; when we, with great intentions, but a weary heart, give in to convenience instead of persevering and obediently waiting on His plans to unfold, we are not wearing and using our belt of truth.
When we read our Bibles, memorize scripture, seek Godly counsel and apply it . . . when we—while tired, scared, discouraged, and hurt—choose His truth over our own natural inclinations, we have then taken that belt of absolute truth and buckled it around our waists. We are now ready to walk out of the privacy of our situation and help encourage others as they get ready for battle as well. We are free to move about because the Truth that set us free, set us free indeed.
We are officially ready to stand firm!