[Exclusive] Building a House of Prayer, Full Armor Prayer

Building a House of Prayer

Eighteen Prayer Models for Approaching God’s Throne

Author | Dr. Joshua Young-Gi Hong

<Full Armor Prayer>

 

“Prayer is the only weapon of the saints.”—Thompson

 

Full Armor Prayer is a prayer to arm ourselves to win spiritual warfare. This is a prayer to arm ourselves as soldiers of faith in God by meditating on God’s full armor as introduced in Ephesians 6. In verses 10 and 11, the Apostle Paul said, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer

Full Armor Prayer makes us spiritually awake and is very effective in defeating Satan’s attack or trickery. We begin this prayer with the heart of our loving God after checking our spiritual status. Then, we put on the elements of the full armor of God one by one. Lastly, we pray earnestly for the help of the Holy Spirit.

A training of “praying in the Holy Spirit on all occasions” (Ephesians 6:18) should accompany in order to strengthen the power of Full Armor Prayer.

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 1

Confront the Reality of Spiritual Warfare

The Apostle Paul has said, “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood” (Ephesians 6:12). Here, struggle means having two people fighting to bring the other down. The Apostle Paul is making a simile here to make a reference of a sport to spiritual warfare. “Flesh and blood” signifies the weakness of mankind, but we, the saints of the Church, should remember that our struggle is not with other people but with an invisible power, Satan. The spiritual warfare of Christians is not like the war of ambushing far away nor preparing to fire a missile but the kind of struggling that requires hand-to-hand combat. However, there are many Christians who are ignorant of this reality of spiritual warfare.

I opened my spiritual eyes to observe the nature of this spiritual warfare when I was a junior in college. We had a regular meeting with Mr. Edmond every week, a lay missionary from the United States. We had time for fellowship and praise, prayer, and Bible study. Then, one day, a lady in her early thirties attended the meeting. When it was time to pray, she said suddenly, “I have a demon inside me. I have been in pain because of it.”

Mr. Edmond laid his hands on her to pray, and the demon in her began to rave. She was foaming at the mouth and fainted on her back. Then, the demon in her began to revile, and abusive words that no human could have uttered came out of her mouth. The demon cursed her mother and cursed everything, sometimes even citing verses in the Bible.

I laid my hands on the possessed woman for benediction. Then, right away I was shocked by a stinging sensation like an electric shock. I was so alarmed I took my hands away from her. Then, I placed my hands on her again. The same shock hit me again. I asked two sisters next to me, “Did you also feel an electric shock?” They each replied, “Yes, I felt something like that.” Then, a fear attacked my heart. “What if this demon also tries to possess me?” It was as if the demon was seeing through my spiritual condition.

As the possessed woman raved again, the room was filled with an indescribable odor. If a place is filled with the Holy Spirit, there is a fragrance. However, in places where the demon is present, it gives out a terrible odor. So, I believe it is right to say that there is a fragrance of Jesus emanating from a good Christian. Mr. Edmond always requested us to sing hymns before driving out a demon. Praise is for the glory of God so that a demon will have his hands tied. He also asked us to hold our hands together to signify our unity. God makes us one, and Satan makes us separate. The missionary laid his hands on her quietly and began to give commands in the name of Jesus Christ. What I realized from this incident is that a demon fears spiritually mature Christians, even if they do not confront the demon aggressively.

Later, the demon was driven out by the prayer of Mr.Edmond. The woman was freed from the demon finally. She was an intellectual with a degree in postgraduate studies. She possessed deep insights and knowledge but was suffering from Satan’s bindings. After this incident, I realized two things.

The first was that spiritual warfare exists for sure. Spiritual warfare is not a game. It is a reality that can even overtake our life. Spiritual warfare is going on even at this moment even if we cannot see it. Our struggle is not against our flesh and blood or against other people.

The second was that because Satan knows of my spiritual condition we have to wear the holiness obtained from the spiritual power of the Holy Spirit. In the Gospels, demons were afraid of Jesus and shivered in fear at the sight of Him. Deception is useless in the spiritual realm. Our present state is fully revealed in the spiritual realm. Demons know of our spiritual status as well.

C. S. Lewis once said, “The people whom demons can control most easily are those who do not believe in their existence.” How easy it would be for demons to snatch the souls of these people who do not believe that there are demons lurking to trap them in their snares. Lloyd Jones clarified this point also: “The most important reason for the weakening of today’s Church is that demons have been forgotten about. We attribute all our problems to our personal mistakes. We are ignorant of the presence and actions of our enemy, Satan and his evil spirits.” Christians and the Church should be aware of Satan’s being and be spiritually awake.

The original meaning of Satan is “to throw,” “to separate in between.” Thus, from this meaning of the word, we can see that the work of Satan is to sever our relationship with others and God. The Apostle Paul expressed his concern in this regard: “But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3). Satan is responsible for our halfhearted devotion to Christ and our absence of passionate love for the Lord.

The demon also severs the relationship between people. If there is a conflict and division in a church, it is because Satan is working behind it.

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 2

Figure Out the Tricks of Satan

We must wear God’s full armor to confront “the devil’s schemes [tricks].” Before giving the Full Armor Prayer, we have to pray, “God, please allow me the wisdom and power to confront and defeat Satan’s tricks.” Scheme or trick in Greek is methodeia. The English word method originated from this Greek word. Demons are so cunning that they attack the saint’s weaknesses with many tricks. Satan disguises himself as “an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14) and is “the father of lies” (John 8:44).

The characteristics of evil spirits are attractiveness and sweetness. Evil can be sweet upon swallowing but becomes a bitter poison afterward. John Stott summarized it into three points: “The evil spirits are powerful, wicked, and cunning.” Satan has two purposes when he tricks us. The first is to hinder God’s glory. For this purpose, Satan makes an all-out effort so that we may not be saved. Salvation of a human soul is the biggest event to glorify God. The second is to make people unhappy. Satan afflicts us with such calamities as inferiority, defeat, loss of esteem, guilty conscience, sickness, and suffering. Thus, we have to earnestly request God to give us the wisdom to figure out Satan’s attack.

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 3

A Prayer for Strengthening Our Spirit

The best method to confront Satan is to strengthen our spirit. The Apostle Paul talks of spiritual warfare and commands us, “Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power” (Ephesians 6:10). Be strong in Greek is endunamousthe. This word has three meanings: the first, in the present tense, implies for the saints to be strong continually. Otherwise, we may be led astray by Satan’s temptation. The second, in a passive voice, means to be strengthened, and implies that we cannot be strong on our volition and effort but only by the power of God. The third is used as an imperative. It is not an option to be strong by the Lord’s power; it is a command from the Lord. The Lord gave us this command for ourselves. Here, we have to give this confession to God: “Lord, we can be strong only when in the Lord. The source of victory in my life is your power. We cannot be victorious on our own. Lord, please make us strong.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 4

Wear the Full Armor of God

Now, we offer the Full Armor Prayer provided by God.

The Apostle Paul in a prison of the Roman Empire uses this metaphor to draw a parallel between our spiritual armor and that of Roman soldiers. The full armor at that time meant a shield, sword, spear, helmet, knee protector, and breastplate”. Full armor signifies the armor that protects all our body, as it means literally. If there is a gap in our armor, the enemy’s arrow will be able to pierce us through the gap. Thus, we should not show any spiritual weakness or a blind spot to the devil in our spiritual life. Thus, the Apostle Paul is saying, “Do not give the devil a foothold” (Ephesians 4:27). Giving a foothold means giving an opportunity. So, we have to guard ourselves with God’s full armor not to give any chance of attack from Satan. We have to wear God’s full armor to protect us from Satan’s flaming arrows. Then, how should we be armored? The Apostle Paul says the following on the contents of a full armor: “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6: 14-17).

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 5

A Prayer to Buckle around the Waist with the Belt of Truth

We have to protect our waist first. It is understood that the most important body part to protect is our head, but the Apostle Paul starts with the waist. If the waist is not protected and is hurt, we cannot stand firm. Then, every body part will be exposed to the enemy’s attack. Strictly speaking, a belt is not part of the armor, but it needs to be worn before putting on the armor. This belt is a leather belt that soldiers used at the time to make their armor tight and to hold the sheath of the sword. Here, it refers to the spiritual condition of the saints.

In the Old Testament, there is a prophecy: “Righteousness will be his belt and faithfulness the sash around his waist” (Isaiah 11:5). This means to live the life of earnest faithfulness. To win a spiritual warfare, we need to stand firm on righteousness and faithfulness. Thus, we have to check if there is falsehood or insincerity in our faith and if that is so, we have to give a prayer of repentance. If we do not have sincere faith, the devil will have a foothold to attack us because of the gap in our armor of faith.

Thus, let’s offer a prayer of repentance: “Lord, I repent for having an insincere attitude of faith toward you. Please have me look only toward you. Please fasten my waist with your belt of truth only.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 6

A Prayer to Have the Breastplate of Righteousness in Place

Next, we have to wear the breastplate of righteousness in place. A breastplate was made from hardened leather, iron, and copper to protect the chest of a soldier. A righteous saint protects his heart from Satan’s attack. If there is an element of iniquity in our life, the devil will accuse us in front of God. Also, the devil will echo a voice of guilt in our heart, “How could you commit such a terrible sin being a child of God?” Whenever we commit a sin, the devil will try to take advantage of it to make us fall. Thus, we should not allow any room for the devil to accuse us and make us feel guilty.

God has called us righteous from the moment we believed in Jesus. We can be righteous only through our faith. This is the essence of the gospel. Here, being righteous does not mean moral perfection but being on the right relationship with God. It is like marriage. Because we love our spouse, we get married. However, if we treat our spouses like dirt, take them for granted, or have an affair with another, it will only be a matter of time before the marriage falls apart. Because we got married out of love, we have to develop and mature our marriage with love.

Although we have been in good terms with God in faith, our righteousness is incomplete. As we have fellowship with God and live a life of obedience, we can be more righteous. Thus, we become righteous by faith and live the life of righteousness by faith. Calvin states that the breastplate of righteousness signifies an “upright character and obedience and loyalty to the holy Word of God.”

It is time for a prayer: “Lord, only you are my righteousness. Leaving the Lord, I cannot be righteous. Please place upon me a breastplate of righteousness so that I may obey your words always.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 7

A Prayer to Have Our Feet Fitted with the Readiness that Comes from the Gospel of Peace

Next, we have to pray for shoes fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. The Apostle Paul may have thought of the shoes of a Roman soldier, which were made from leather to make long marches comfortable and prevent the feet from slipping.

If you have experienced a long march in the Army, you will know the importance of shoes (boots) fully. If shoes are new or not fitted, then the soles of your feet and your ankles will be so blistered that you will have a hard time completing the march. Likewise, fitted shoes for our spirit are the gospel of peace. One of the secrets of the gospel that the Apostle Paul reveals is that the gospel gives a peace of mind even in the midst of fierce spiritual warfare.

The gospel of peace signifies the gospel of peace of Jesus Christ, who became the intercessor between God and us sinners. As the lyrics of a gospel song go, “The Lord is peace, He has broken all the walls around us.” We have reconciled with God and come to peace with our neighbors through the gospel of peace. Each of us and the Church should march onto the spiritual warfare and strive to carry out our mission of spreading the gospel successfully.

We must pray: “Lord, please allow me the peace from you amidst spiritual warfare. Let me testify of the gospel. Please help me proclaim the gospel to reconcile people with God, breaking through Satan’s attack and hindrance. Please let my feet be fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 8

A Prayer to Take Up the Shield of Faith

Next, we have to pray for the shield of faith. Here, the shield refers not to a small shield but a big rectangular shield. Thus, a shield is a very important defensive weapon. It was impossible to fight without a shield. The Apostle Paul is making a simile here to compare a shield to faith.

Only persistent and continual trust in God can extinguish the flaming arrows of the evil one. Fire was inflamed on the tips of arrows pasted with pine resin, and the flaming arrows were used to attack. The faith of saints works like a shield to deter all attacks of Satan and protect them safely.

When we do not trust God, we get hit with the arrows of worry and doubt, hopelessness and pessimism, unholiness and selfishness, and frustration and fear. These are flaming arrows of Satan’s tricks. However, God is a refuge to those who seek Him (Psalm 91:2). One interesting thing is that the Roman military had a systematic maneuver to use shields together next to each other to protect them from the arrows of the enemy while marching to attack. Faith can grow more in a community of faith and protect more effectively from Satan’s attack.

A time for a prayer: “Lord, let me trust you alone. Please add more to my faith to defend against the attack of the evil one. I believe in the Lord only. The Lord only is my everything. Please allow me a shield of faith.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 9

A Prayer to Put On the Helmet of Salvation

Next, we have to pray for the helmet of salvation. The helmet of a Roman soldier was so sturdy that it did not break unless a sledge hammer pounded on it. It protected the heads of Roman soldiers very well. Also, it could be adorned to attach colorful ornaments. This helmet of salvation has two significances. The first is the conviction of salvation by God. Our salvation comes entirely from God (Isaiah 59:17). And the salvation is given free as a gift by grace. The saints who have a conviction of salvation cannot be snatched by any hurdles from the hands of God. No hardships can sever the saints from the love of Christ (Romans 8:38).

The second is the hope of salvation as a helmet (1 Thessalonians 5:8). It is the hope to be saved from this world of sins ultimately. Faith is accompanied by hope, love and loyalty go together, and truth and righteousness walk together. Our faith in salvation is related to the hope for the ultimate victory.

A time for a prayer: “Lord, thank you sincerely for saving me. The devil cannot take this grace of salvation from me. The Lord will make my salvation complete. Please bestow salvation to me when I am in fear and let me not lose the hope for complete salvation. Please allow me the helmet of salvation.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 10

A Prayer to Take the Sword of the Spirit, which Is the Word of God

Next, we have to pray for the sword of the Holy Spirit. The sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. God’s Word is like a sharp-edged sword to discern the truth and lies (Hebrews 4:12). The only offensive weapon in God’s full armor is this sword of the Spirit. We have to use the Word of God in order to win spiritual warfare. Jesus won by the Word of God against Satan’s temptations (Matthew 4:1-10). We have to remember God’s Word and meditate on it whenever we face Satan’s temptation. Satan uses three routes to tempt us. They are lust of body (covetousness for materials, food, and sexual lust, and such); lust of eyes (craving for fame, popularity, knowledge, wrongful ideology, and such); and boastful pride of life (spiritual arrogance, non-believing, disobedience, and such) (1 John 2:16).

To overcome this temptation of Satan, we have to hold onto the Word of God. “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you” (Psalm 119:11).

Are you possibly holding a broken sword? If the Apostle Paul were writing the Book of Ephesians today, he might have used a gun instead of a sword to make a simile to the Word of God. If you do not clean your gun regularly, it will get rusted and will not fire properly. Likewise, if we not always near the Word of God, we will not be able to win over Satan. We have to read, meditate, study, recite, and hear the Word of God frequently. And we have to live a life of obedience.

A time for a prayer: “Lord, let me have the heart to long for your Word. Please allow me the wisdom to realize your meaning upon reading the Bible and lead my life by your commandments. Let me remember your wisdom to defeat Satan, and let me do everything by your Word. Let the Holy Spirit illuminate my heart. Lord, let me hold the sword of the Holy Spirit.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 11

Pray on All Occasions

If we do not make prayer a habit, then the effectiveness of God’s full armor will be greatly diminished. If we are not physically fit, then we cannot bear the weights of the armor and military gear. Likewise, we cannot handle God’s full armor if we do not pray continuously. Thus, we have to pray on all occasions (Ephesians 6:18—“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.”) On all occasions means in all cases or, in other words, always. Whether we are glad or sad and regardless of our circumstances, we have to make our best efforts to pray. Praying on all occasions means always being in a state of spiritual alertness.

I served my military obligation as a KATUSA (Korean Augmentation To the eighth United States Army) at a military camp in Busan. Soon after I was assigned to the post, I heard a loud noise early in the morning outside the barracks. I could not tell what it was. Then, a little while later, I could hear an American soldier saying, “Alert! Alert!” It was a call for emergency. Then, a KATUSA senior came to let me know that there was military emergency and that I had to wear my battle dress uniform, helmet, chemical warfare mask and line up to get my weapon. I was in a hurry to get ready and be at the rally point. Then, after all this trouble, I found that it was a drill.

Afterwards, this drill happened once in a while early in the morning. During this alert, I had to wear the complete uniform and carry all my gear and then stand by for further orders. Through this drill, I learned that the saints who face spiritual warfare should be always on spiritual alertness. As the Apostle Paul advised, we have to know all kinds of prayers and put them into practice (Ephesians 6:18).

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 12

Pray In the Holy Spirit

Satan is much smarter and stronger than we. Then, how can we beat this stronger Satan? It is impossible with our power. Only the power of God can save us from the devils and win over the dark powers. I have an example. A first-grade child was harassed and beaten by a fifth-grade bully. When the kid was in such trouble, his father appeared, which gave the child confidence and courage.

How was this possible? The first-grader had his father nearby. The kid alone could not defeat this bully, but he was not afraid anymore in the presence of his father. Likewise, the power of the Holy Spirit is absolutely needed to win over the devils.

We have to learn how to pray in the Holy Spirit. Praying in the Holy Spirit is like having fellowship with God the Spirit every moment and asking for His help. Because the Holy Spirit is our Counselor, He is near us to help. As we get nearer and nearer to Him, our Spirits will gain more spiritual power. Converse with the Holy Spirit twenty four hours a day and long for His presence. The Holy Spirit is the power supply of our spiritual life. We have to pray so that the Holy Spirit may be in our life.

A time for a prayer: “Holy Spirit, I welcome you, love you. I cannot win over this spiritual warfare without you. Please be with me always to help in this spiritual warfare.” When we pray earnestly like this, we will experience the presence of the Holy Spirit.

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 13

Know the Purpose of the Full Armor Prayer

Why do we pray for this spiritual warfare? Through it, the gospel of Christ is witnessed. The Apostle Paul says that he became an ambassador in Ephesians 6:20—“I am an ambassador in chains.” An ambassador has the power to represent the country, its people, and its president or king. The Apostle Paul is confessing that he was called to be the ambassador of Christ, who is the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

The spirit, soul, and heart of the Apostle Paul were engulfed by the desire to testify of the gospel no matter what. The Apostle Paul was writing the epistle not to ask God to free him from the prison as soon as possible but for the Ephesians to be courageous witnesses of the gospel.

A time for a prayer: “Lord, please allow me the heart to love the gospel of the Lord and the heart of love for lost souls. Please bless me as a worker of God’s kingdom to destroy Satan’s camps with the power of the Holy Spirit and to testify of the gospel.”

 

The Holy Place of Prayer 14

Pray, Proclaiming the Victory

The last thing to remember in a prayer for spiritual warfare is that Christians have already won through Jesus Christ. Christ had the conviction in whatever circumstances He was in that “the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

When I was in an elementary school, my mother sent me on an errand to a store. On my way home, I stepped on a mouse. The mouse was completely crushed under my feet. It happened so fast that I was totally perplexed and did not know what to do. My mother saw what had happened and interpreted it spiritually. “Young-Gi has just squashed the power of Satan.” I did not pay much attention to her comment then. Many years later, I came across Romans 16:20—“The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” That’s right. We who crushed Satan’s head are already victors. Satan may have struck Jesus’ heel, but Jesus crushed Satan’s head for the complete victory. The one who tempts us will be thrown into the fire of burning sulfur (Revelation 20:10).

Satan fears not us but Jesus Christ in us. What we have to do is, first, to remember that we are conquerors always; and, second, we must submit to God completely (James 4:7). Therefore, we have to rebuke Satan in prayer: “Satan, I have won already, so flee from me by the precious blood of Jesus. Don’t come near me again. You have been defeated. In the name of Jesus, I bind you in hell where you belong.” This is the last stage of the Full Armor Prayer. We have the spiritual power allowed and given by God to rebuke and bind Satan. Use your spiritual power.

 

Checkpoint of Prayer

When we offer the Full Armor Prayer, the devil will be on alert and will lay out all kinds of snares of temptation or hardship. Thus, we should not budge an inch from where we stand no matter what is happening around us. After praying to be spiritually more armored, we have to offer the prayer of binding Satan. Another important thing is that Satan is not our focus. It is not good to pay too much attention to Satan in our daily life. Our focus should be on Jesus. It is better to remember the Lord more and to focus on the fellowship with the Lord than to relate everything to Satan’s trickery.

 

Sweet Rain of Grace

The Full Armor Prayer is very effective in developing spiritual strength. It gives us the strength to dodge Satan’s tricks and to resist Satan’s temptations. The greatest benefit of the Full Armor Prayer is living the life of being spiritually awake all the time. Because Satan is looking for people to swallow like a roaring lion we must wear God’s full armor by praying not to fall under Satan’s trick.

 

Praying Time

The Full Armor Prayer can be carried out in about thirty minutes. However, the real strength of this prayer is to pray in the Holy Spirit on all occasions. Thus, a real Full Armor Prayer is to pray continually. Let us pray to God so that we may be alert every moment to win spiritually as a soldier of God.

 

Closed Prayer Room

  1. The Full Armor Prayer is a prayer in which we wear God’s full armor and are armed to win in a spiritual warfare.
  2. Example of a full armor Prayer
    “Lord, please let me be a brave soldier of faith to be alert and pray all the time.”
    “I command you, the filthy devils that play with my family, be bound in the name of Jesus Christ. I command you to leave my family by the precious blood of Jesus.”
  3. My Full Armor Prayer:
  4. The Order of Full Armor Prayer
    Praise (Hymn or Chorus).
    Confession of Thanksgiving
    Reading the Full Armor Prayer
    Carrying out the Full Armor Prayer
  5. Self-illumination
    Is there any part of me that is not armored spiritually?
    Am I living the life of being spiritually alert?
    Did I offer the prayer of binding Satan?
    Did I get confused and didn’t know what to do when a problem and temptation crept on me while giving the Full Armor Prayer?

 

One Last Word on Full Armor Prayer

The Full Armor Prayer is very effective in dodging and escaping Satan’s attacks and tricks.

 

To be Continued…

 

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