(Ephesians 6:10-18 NKJV) Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.  Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.  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.  Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness,  and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;  praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—
(Ephesians 6:14 NKJV) Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness,
(Isaiah 59:17 NKJV) For He put on righteousness as a breastplate, And a helmet of salvation on His head; He put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, And was clad with zeal as a cloak.
Why did Paul call righteousness a breastplate in his list of armor?
The breastplate was the shiniest, most beautiful, and most glamorous piece of weaponry a Roman soldier possessed. This is what got your attention before anything else. This breastplate could weigh upwards of 40 pounds. Goliath’s weighed 125 pounds.
Can you imagine what it must have looked like when a legion of soldiers walked out on the battlefield with their breastplates gleaming in the sunlight?
The more you wear your breastplate of righteousness, walking through life fully conscious of your righteousness in Christ, the more brightly you shine as a light in a dark world of sin.
(2 Corinthians 6:7 NLT) We faithfully preach the truth. God’s power is working in us. We use the weapons of righteousness in the right hand for attack and the left hand for defense.
- Your righteousness is not only a defensive weapon to protect you from the blows of the enemy, but it is also an offensive weapon to assist you as you assault the enemy and take back lost territory!
Devil (Greek: “Diabalos”) – one who strikes again and again until he finally penetrates the mind with slanderous accusations.
Because the devil desires to penetrate and immobilize a person’s mind and emotions, he especially delights in finding believers who do not know they are righteous. They are easy prey!
He says things like, “You’re the worst believer who has ever lived. Do you think God is going to do anything with you? God can’t use you, you stupid thing!”
What happens when we don’t know we have been made righteous in Christ? We tend to habitually walk in guilt and condemnation.
On the other hand, when you know that God has made you righteous – when you have your breastplate of righteousness firmly in place – it does not matter how many arrows the enemy shoots against you because not one arrow will penetrate.
No word of condemnation, no false allegations, and no guilty thought will penetrate your heart or lodge in your mind when you are walking in your breastplate of righteousness.
Paul is telling us in Ephesians 6:14, “stand – throw back your shoulders, hold your head up high, and walk tall and confidently, as all proud and victorious soldiers do!”
What is Righteousness?
Righteousness means we can stand in the presence of a holy God as though sin never existed in our lives because of what Jesus did for us. It is to be right and approved in God’s sight.
(2 Corinthians 5:21 AMP) For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become [endued with, viewed as being in, and examples of] the righteousness of God [what we ought to be, approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him, by His goodness].
(2 Corinthians 5:21 MSG) How? you say. In Christ. God put the wrong on him who never did anything wrong, so we could be put right with God.
What Does Righteousness Do?
- It restores to man all that he lost in the Fall of Adam.
- It gives man a new relationship with God as a son will all of its privileges.
- It gives us the same standing with God that Jesus had while He was on the earth.
- It gives man the same fellowship with God that Jesus had with the Father.
- It gives man the opportunity to walk in the same faith that Jesus walked with in the earth.
- It gives man the same peace, quietness, and rest with God that Jesus had in the earth.
- It gives man the freedom from the fear of Satan and freedom from the fear of man because we trust God with all our hearts.
Why is this knowledge of righteousness so important?
Your mental attitude has everything to do with how well you perform in the midst of a fight.
To Roman Soldier, if you are mentally and emotionally defeated before you go into a fight, you probably should not go into battle. Why? Because your negative attitude has already determined the outcome of your battle. By understanding and developing an attitude of righteousness in your life and learning how to view yourself through the work of the Cross, you will receive a divine impartation of confidence and boldness that will always put you on the winning side of victory!
- When a believer finally grabs hold of the truth that God has made him righteous, that knowledge changes him.
He no longer views himself as a little, unimportant, defeated believer. He is so affected in his attitude that he begins to move with assurance from a life of chronic defeat to a life of reigning in life as a king!
- An attitude of righteousness will profoundly affect your prayer life!
Your prayers will take on an attitude of power and authority. People wearing this breastplate know that they can come directly into the presence of God and pray with great boldness.
When you have been positively influenced by an understanding of righteousness, it gives you the assurance you need to step out and boldly do the work of God!