People love superheroes, and this season brings back a long awaited sequel, Iron Man 2. This is easily one of the most anticipated sequels of all time, and Tony Stark is back and badder than ever.
Before becoming Iron Man, millionaire playboy/inventor Tony Stark simply cruised casinos, consumed alcohol and amassed sexual conquests as wildly as James Bond. Unlike 007, however, he didn’t stop warlords; he armed them. That is until a missile demonstration ended with Stark’s capture by a murderous Middle Eastern dissident who ordered him to build a weapon of mass destruction. He escaped by using the materials to make tricked-out battle armor. In the process, Stark had the Marvel Comics equivalent of a Damascus Road experience. He repented of his past and pledged to help the very people he’d been hurting, aided by a novel power source and high-tech exoskeleton that conforms to his body Transformers-style.
Something else about Iron Man’s unique origin story makes it special: No radioactive spider bite. No exposure to gamma rays. Stark wasn’t accidentally endowed with new skills. Rather, his heroic journey mirrors an arrogant sinner coming to grips with his own depravity, choosing to change and battle the forces of darkness.
The movie is full of cool gadgets, sarcastic humor, mega-explosions and special effects everywhere. I would just about give my right arm to suit up and dominate evil dudes in Iron Man fashion.
Obviously that is not going to happen, but there is an armored suit available to Christians that in many ways provides the same protection and weaponry, one that lights up the spiritual world like Stark in a village full of terrorists. Here is the description of the conflict we face:
- Put on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6:11)
- Defending against the powers of darkness (Ephesians 6:11)
- The real struggle is spiritual (Ephesians 6:12)
The war that Paul describes here is not against earthly terrorists, communists, or anything that is flesh and blood. This conflict is in the spiritual realm – and it is not for the weak or the wimpy. Every day the unseen forces of Satan and his army are arrayed against you. They are firing off the missiles of deception, discouragement, temptation, and opposition, so you’ll give up the battle and your calling.
We need to make sure that we are properly fitted with this suit from the closet of your soul, so let me walk through the steps that Paul gave us:
- First, put on the belt of truth – which means speaking/ living truthfully and with integrity (Ephesians 6:12).
- Next, position the breastplate of righteousness – which is living in obedience to God’s will and his Word because He has completely forgiven you (Ephesians 6:14).
- Don’t forget the boots of readiness – which is a willingness to share the gospel message with anyone, anywhere, anytime (Ephesians 6:15).
- Raise up the shield of faith – which is hiding behind the promises of God when Satan sends a onslaught of lies and temptations your way (Ephesians 6:16).
- Protect your mind with the helmet of salvation – which is a constant remembrance that the penalty and power of sin is broken in your life, so don’t believe the negative messages from the devil that you are guilty and worthless (Ephesians 6:17).
- Finally, be sure and draw the sword of the Spirit – which is God’s Word (Ephesians 6:17).
- Along with prayer (Ephesians 6:18), this is your offensive weapon to strike the heart of the enemy with incredible force. So powerful in fact, that this is the result:
We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ (2 Cor. 10:3-5).
Picture an army of believers who are protected with the very armor of God and armed with His living Word. God uses this mighty force to stop spiritual terrorism and start a revolution for His cause – making disciples who make disciples!
We are Men of Steel, and we can choose to be Iron Men, choosing to leave the old life behind, and make ourselves battle-ready for the sake of God’s kingdom. Suit up and make a difference.