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HAB-067. Armor of God: Boots and Evangelism. The Boots. And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (Eph. 6:15). Because the foot soldier depends upon good footwear to take him where the action is, combat boots play an important role in his career.

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HAB-067


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    1. HAB-067 Armor of God: Boots and Evangelism LWBC 10-12-08

    2. The Boots • And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (Eph. 6:15). • Because the foot soldier depends upon good footwear to take him where the action is, combat boots play an important role in his career. • The Romans were no different; they designated their infantry by the word CALIGATI after the heavy footgear they wore - the CALIGAE. • So, if we are to be known by our footwear, it is important to learn our “Identity”! LWBC 10-12-08

    3. The Boots • Obviously, the Romans had one of the finest types of footwear ever invented for the infantry. • Actually, the heavy combat boots resembled those of the ancient Greeks. • Similar to sandals, the CALIGAE were made of hobnail-studded leather soles, half an inch thick. • These were bound securely to the foot over the instep and around the ankles with thick leather thongs. • Strips of cloth or fur were placed inside the sandals and served as a lining. LWBC 10-12-08

    4. The Boots • These famed CALIGAE were a crucial part of the Roman soldier's equipment for combat. • It was inevitable, therefore, that the Apostle Paul should mention the necessity of adequate footwear in the great spiritual warfare. • Again, let me remind you that the infantry of the ancient world depended on well-shod feet for transportation. LWBC 10-12-08

    5. The Boots • In Scripture, feet become synonymous with service; but there can be no effective service apart from constant training and preparation along the road to super-grace. • It was the seasoned combat veteran of the Roman army who served his country best; and it is the spiritually mature Christian Warrior who can serve the Lord to the maximum of his capability and capacity! LWBC 10-12-08

    6. The Boots • The particular service in view here is witnessing. • Paul introduces the equipment for the feet with the phrase, "And your feet shod." • "And" is the adjunctive use of the conjunction KAI and literally means "also." • "Your feet" was correctly translated from the accusative plural direct object from POUS and from the definite article in the accusative plural, which has been used as a possessive pronoun. LWBC 10-12-08

    7. The Boots • The aorist middle participle of the verb HUPODEO means "to tie," "to bind beneath," or "to put on footwear"; here, it refers to the putting on of shoes or CALIGAE: "also having put combat boots on your feet.” • The wearing of spiritual combat boots indicates readiness to serve our supreme Commander wherever and whenever He directs. LWBC 10-12-08

    8. The Boots • The preposition EN (with) plus the instrumental singular from HETOIMASIA signify "readiness," "preparation" or, as documented from Arndt and Gingrich's Greek Lexicon, "equipment." • What type of equipment is essential to effective witnessing?! • It is the "equipment of the Gospel” (Good News) • A genitive of description from the noun EUAGGELLION, (compounded from EU-"good" and AGGELIA - "news”. LWBC 10-12-08

    9. The Boots • The equipment for full preparedness in witnessing is the knowledge of Bible doctrine pertinent to salvation, described here as "the gospel (good news) of peace." • The phrase "of peace" (genitive singular of apposition from the noun EIRENE) must be corrected to read "even peace" and refers to the doctrine of Reconciliation. LWBC 10-12-08

    10. The Boots • RECONCILIATION: The sum total of all that Christ did on the Cross in removing the Barrier between God and sinful man. • God is propitiated; man is reconciled. • Reconciliation is on the Manward side of the Cross. LWBC 10-12-08

    11. The Boots • Note that the command to put on these combat boots is not restricted to the pastor behind the pulpit; it is given to all members of the Royal Legion! • EVERY BELIEVER is in full, time Christian service, of which witnessing is a part! • Therefore, it is imperative that all of us be shod and ready for action AT ALL TIMES (1 Pet. 3:15) • Inured to long and hard marches with full pack, the Roman soldier with the CALIG AE on his feet was flexible enough to meet any situation. LWBC 10-12-08

    12. The Boots • Likewise, the Christian soldier's effectiveness depends upon his mastery of certain doctrines and his flexibility in their use. • Not only does he need to have correct information about the Gospel, he also must KNOW his subject. • The objective in witnessing is the accurate and clear communication of salvation. LWBC 10-12-08

    13. The Boots • There are no specific methods for witnessing; you will probably never handle any two situations in the same way. • The Lord Jesus Christ Himself used many different methods and approaches when He extended His offers of salvation; but always, His offer was GOOD NEWS! LWBC 10-12-08

    14. The Boots • Typical of many evangelists and so-called "hell-fire and damnation preachers" is their emphasis on the bad news that sinner's go to Hell. • The Gospel is good news; the fact that you are a sinner is not! • In vain, you strain to hear something that is encouraging. • If you possess any norms and standards of right and wrong in your soul, you must admit that you have sinned at some time in your life. LWBC 10-12-08

    15. The Boots • Nowhere does this passage command any believer to tramp roughshod over the unsaved segment of the human race. • If this were warranted, where do you stop or start tramping, when you yourself are a sinner, yet you set yourself up to point out the sinfulness of others? • Let me remind you that the Lord admonished the self-styled judges of the woman taken in the act of adultery: "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her" (John 8:7). LWBC 10-12-08

    16. The Boots • It is true that "'the wages of sin is death" 6:23a). • That's the bad news! • The good news is "the gift of God ... Eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Rom. 6:23b). • The GOOD News -- "even peace" - is the doctrine of reconciliation. • Once there stood a great barrier between God and man. • It was man's sinfulness which had erected the barrier. LWBC 10-12-08

    17. The Boots • Perfect God was on one side of it; imperfect man, on the other. • Man could neither get around the barrier by being good or religious, nor could he surmount it by being sincere. • Were you to spend your entire life living by your finest principles, you would be no closer to God than you were at the beginning! • What, then, can you do about it? LWBC 10-12-08

    18. The Boots • You cannot and need not do anything, for Jesus Christ did it all for you! • He removed the barrier so that God and. man might be Reconciled. • There is peace - EIRENE - between God and man, and all that man has to do is walk across the line by a totally nonmeritorius type of thinking called FAITH (Acts 16:31). LWBC 10-12-08

    19. The Boots • Now THAT IS GOOD NEWS! Christ solved the sin problem on the Cross; and it is for you to deliver God's message of grace: • “Also having put combat boots on your feet, with the equipment of the Gospel, even peace (reconciliation)” (expanded trans., Eph. 6:15). LWBC 10-12-08

    20. The Boots • In metaphors of Scripture, the Roman soldier's Caligae become analogous to witnessing. • As these heavy hobnailed leather sandals carried the Roman legionaries to their posts of duty in the far-flung corners of the empire, so his witnessing takes the Christian Warrior to unsaved mankind throughout the world with the Gospel of salvation. • Personal evangelism is the responsibility of every member of the Royal Family of God and functions apart from mass or church evangelism. LWBC 10-12-08

    21. The Boots • Effective witnessing demands a thorough understanding of certain Doctrinal principles, which I will delineate: • 1. The Holy Spirit is the sovereign Executive of witnessing. • Therefore, you must make it your business to learn how He deals with the soul of the unbeliever! • As the Lord's personal ambassador on the earth, you are ordered to present the Good News of salvation to the unbelieving world. LWBC 10-12-08

    22. The Boots • However, since the unbeliever was born spiritually dead - without a human spirit (Eph. 2:1) - he is incapable of assimilating spiritual phenomena (1 Cor. 2:14). • He simply cannot understand what you are trying to tell him. • Therefore, the Holy Spirit must take up the slack and act in place of the missing Human spirit to provide the necessary frame of reference for the Gospel (John 16:8-11). LWBC 10-12-08

    23. The Boots • Here is where the convincing ministry of the Spirit comes into the picture. • This ministry is known in theological terms as "common grace." • When the content of the Gospel is communicated to the unbeliever, the Holy Spirit convicts him of "sin, righteousness and judgment" (John 16:8). LWBC 10-12-08

    24. The Boots • 'Aha," some will say, "I told you that sin was in there somewhere!" • A Scriptural text must never be lifted out of context! • If you will read on, you will discover that no one goes to the Lake of Fire because he is a sinner. • If that were the case, we would all end up there! • The only sin which condemns man eternally is the sin of rejection of Jesus Christ as Savior. LWBC 10-12-08

    25. The Boots • Sin is Hamartia – to miss the mark, our bad behavior is only an obvious illustration of our missing the mark. The mark we miss? • Jesus Christ defines it as the sin of unbelief: "OF (literally, concerning) sin, BECAUSE THEY DO NOT BELIEVE IN ME" (John 1:3:9)! • Sin ceased to be an issue once Jesus Christ hung on the Cross. • He was judged for the sins of the old sin nature - even for those personal sins which you have not yet committed! LWBC 10-12-08

    26. The Boots • So severe was God's judgment that Jesus Christ screamed out repeatedly, "My God (God the Father), my God (God the Holy Spirit), why hast thou forsaken me?" (Matt. 27:46). • Why was He forsaken? Because He was bearing our sins in His own body on that tree (1 Pet. 2:24). At the same time, Christ rejected all human good; human good is reserved to be dealt with at the Last Judgment (Rev. 20: 12). LWBC 10-12-08

    27. The Boots • Anyone who rejects Jesus Christ as Savior inevitably depends on his own good deeds, on his talent or ability to gain the approbation of God. • All these become the basis of his indictment at the Great White Throne Judgment (Rev. 20:11, 13-15). • Only one sin will be mentioned: the sin of rejection of Jesus Christ as Savior (John 3:36). LWBC 10-12-08

    28. The Boots • 2. Pertinent Bible doctrine is your weapon in witnessing! • This does not mean that you must quote a string of Scripture passages every time you open your mouth. • Rather, present the Gospel information as you have categorized it in your soul. • Like the fighting men of temporal combat, the combatants of the spiritual conflict must know their weapons intimately. LWBC 10-12-08

    29. The Boots • Take apart the weapon of witnessing, and you will find that it consists of seven principles; all of them are related to the Word of God. • (1) The Gospel is the power of God with reference to salvation (Rom. 1:16; 1 Cor. 1:18). Here you have the caliber of your weapons! • (2) The Bible is the absolute norm for truth (2 Pet. 1:12- 21). This is the accuracy of your weapon! LWBC 10-12-08

    30. The Boots • (3) The Bible is the source of the Gospel (Luke 16:28-31; 1 Cor. 15:3-4) - the arsenal from which it comes! • (4) The Bible is the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16) - the Designer of your weapon! • (5) The Bible is divine power (Heb. 4:12) - its supernatural impact! • (6) The Bible never returns void (Isa. 55: 11) - its aim! • (7) The Bible endures forever (Luke 21:33; 1 Pet. 1:25) the permanence of your weapon! LWBC 10-12-08

    31. The Boots • God put this foolproof weapon at your disposal for one simple reason: He wants you to use it! • 3. The Christian Warrior, also known as the believer, priest, is the agent of witnessing (Acts 1:8; Eph. 6:15, 20; 2 Tim. 4:5). • You, the royal ambassador, must witness in two areas: by life (2 Cor. 3:3; 6:3) and by lips (2 Cor. 5:14-21; 6:2). LWBC 10-12-08

    32. The Boots • There are times When you have the opportunity and the privilege to verbalize the Gospel. • At other times, the witness of your life-style will be pertinent and meaningful, perhaps in your own neighborhood or place of work. • Should the Lord open the door for you to witness, make sure that you are in fellowship and therefore filled with the Spirit. LWBC 10-12-08

    33. The Boots • Forget all you have heard concerning witnessing gimmicks; witnessing excludes human persuasiveness! • You may win an argument, but you will lose a soul whom Jesus Christ died to save! • Some of you may be shy and be hard put to find the right words with strangers, much less with friends. • How can you overcome this reticence? • By putting on the full armor from God, by reaching super-grace status. LWBC 10-12-08

    34. The Boots and Witnessing • Creation Evangelism: A Powerful Tool in Today's World • by Kenneth Ham • Why has the Lord raised up creation science organizations worldwide? • Why is it necessary to have such an organization in each country? • One important concept we have come to realize in Creation Science is that the Lord has not called us only to oppose evolution, but to help in restoring the foundation of the gospel in our society. LWBC 10-12-08

    35. The Boots and Witnessing • We believe if the churches took up the tool of creation evangelism, not only would we see a stemming of the tide of humanistic philosophy, but we would also see the seeds of revival sown and flourishing in a culture that is becoming increasingly more pagan each day. LWBC 10-12-08

    36. The Boots and Witnessing • When we look at the United States and other countries today, we see increases in homosexuality, support for abortion on demand, disobedience to those in authority, people who do not want to work, pornography, the abandonment of marriage and modest clothing, to name but a few examples. • We also note the following: The church is not as effective as it used to be. LWBC 10-12-08

    37. The Boots and Witnessing • Christians are fighting for their freedoms. Parents don't automatically send their children to church programs, as used to happen even when the parents were not churchgoers themselves. • The education system is no longer considered Christian. • What has occurred in society to bring about this change? • Why is it that many people today just scoff when we talk abut Christ and the doctrines of the gospel? LWBC 10-12-08

    38. The Boots and Witnessing • It wasn't long ago that creationism was the basis of our society. • A creation basis means there are absolutes. If you accept a belief in God as Creator, then you accept that there are laws, as He is the Lawgiver. • He is the absolute authority, and we are under total obligation to Him. • Laws are not a matter of our opinions but rules given by the One who has the right to impose them upon us for our good, and His own glory. LWBC 10-12-08

    39. The Boots and Witnessing • It used to be that creationism was taught through the school system. • People who weren't Christians by and large respected and obeyed the laws based upon the Bible. • A homosexual lifestyle was against the law; abortion in most instances was considered murder. LWBC 10-12-08

    40. The Boots and Witnessing • But what happened? A man called Charles Darwin repopularized an ancient pagan belief now called "evolution." • It was promulgated as science, although it is not science. • Many people believed that evolution was science--not understanding the real meaning of either evolution or science--and so this view of origins began to permeate our society. • People who were not Christians readily accepted evolution, as it is a belief system that purports to explain the world without God. LWBC 10-12-08

    41. The Boots and Witnessing • Humans are simply a result of chance. • That is, no one owns you--you own yourself! • This means that you are under obligation to no one. • People who are not Christians would accept this view because the Bible tells us that men love darkness rather than light, because they are sinful creatures (John 3:19). LWBC 10-12-08

    42. The Boots and Witnessing • As this view became established, people started to ask questions such as: "If evolution is true, and there is no God who is Creator, then why are there laws about marriage?" • "Why are there laws against a homosexual lifestyle?" • "Why can't we carry out abortions on demand? • After all, killing a baby by abortion is like getting rid of an animal that is not needed or wanted." LWBC 10-12-08

    43. The Boots and Witnessing • In other words, the belief system of evolution provided a basis for the humanistic morality that says you can do what you want to do because nobody owns you--there is no right or wrong. • In other words, their ONE ABSOLUTE is that there are NO ABSOLUTES. LWBC 10-12-08

    44. The Boots and Witnessing • The conflict we see in our society at present is the clash between the faith of Christians with their creation basis and absolutes and the religion of humanism with its evolutionary basis and its relative morality that says "anything goes." • These two systems cannot exist beside each other for very long, for in the end, one must go. • When creation with its Christian absolutes was the basis of society, people knew what was right and what was wrong. LWBC 10-12-08

    45. The Boots and Witnessing • Sexual deviancy, easy divorce, public lawlessness, abortion on demand, pornography, public nudity, and so one, were all considered to be wrong. • Varying punishments for offenders were meted out by society. • These attitudes were basically built on Biblical principles (e.g., the Ten Commandments). • However, as belief in God was abandoned and replaced with evolution, people started to question the basis of the society in which they lived. LWBC 10-12-08

    46. The Boots and Witnessing • Logically, as society rejects the basis of creation (and consequently a basis of belief in one who is the Lawgiver) their individual and collective sinful natures will be expressed. • Logically we would expect an abandoning of Christian ethics and an increase in such things as lawlessness, homosexuality, pornography, abortion, etc. LWBC 10-12-08

    47. The Boots and Witnessing • Many Christians recognize the degeneration that has occurred in society. • They can see the rejection of Christian ethics and the increase in these anti-God philosophies. • However, they are at a loss to know why this is occurring. • The reason they are in such a dilemma is that they don't understand the foundational nature of the battle. LWBC 10-12-08

    48. The Boots and Witnessing • Creation versus evolution is the bottom line. • When people reject the God of creation, this necessarily affects how they view themselves, others, the world in which they live, and therefore how they should act in this world. LWBC 10-12-08

    49. The Boots and Witnessing • Well, what can we do about it? • The Lord has provided us with a phenomenally powerful tool--creation evangelism. • We believe the reason that the church is so ineffective today is because it is not evangelizing in the right way. • The church may be proclaiming the message of the Cross and Christ, but this is not as effective as it used to be, because it is not proclaimed the way it used to be. LWBC 10-12-08

    50. The Boots and Witnessing • We need to take a lesson from the New Testament. • In Acts 14 and 17 are two specific examples of approaches to the Greeks. • The method was different from that used for the Jews. • When Paul went to the Greeks, he didn't start by preaching about Jesus Christ and the Cross, but by telling them about the true God who is the Creator, and from there went on to the rest of the Gospel about Jesus Christ. LWBC 10-12-08