We had been in Uganda for several days out on the trail sharing the gospel hut to hut. On this particular morning, I along with several others were not feeling well, and we didn’t know if we were going to be able to go out into the field that day or not. It was also at this time, God had me in the middle of memorizing Romans 5-8 and was working on Romans 6:13 that morning. God’s timing is always excellent, and the Holy Spirit illuminated a portion of the verse that would be my prayer for the team that day.
And do not offer any parts of it to sin as weapons for unrighteousness. But as those who are alive from the dead, offer yourselves to God, and all the parts of yourselves to God as weapons for righteousness. Romans 6:13
How many times have we heard the importance of offering ourselves to God? It is a critical piece in the life of a believer who is seeking to follow Christ daily. However, Romans 6:13 clearly states to offer not only ourselves but ALL THE PARTS OF OURSELVES to God.
Fast forward two years.
God has continued to bring me back to Romans 6:13 and the impact that it has on the believer’s life. Recently, as I was reading through R.C. Sproul’s devotional, Before the Face of God: A Daily Guide For Living From The Book of Romans, when the Lord confronted me once again with its significance.
Sproul’s discussion on Romans 3:9-19 focuses on the original righteousness God created in humankind before the fall. When given over to sin, His creation becomes available to be used for wickedness instead of righteousness. It is not just the person, but the entire person that becomes used for evil. Sproul states:
The apostle Paul gathers quotations from the Old Testament to illustrate how the organs of the human body that God designed for righteousness now have become tools of wickedness: the throat, tongue, lips, mouth, feet, and eyes. The body that God gave for good purposes is used by sinners for evil.
While I do not claim to have an understanding of Romans 6:13 completely, I do know it clearly says our bodies are to be used as weapons. And not as weapons for destruction, but for weapons of righteousness.
So how does one use their body as a weapon?
Offer Your Body
If we are going to use all the parts of ourselves as weapons for righteousness then we need to first, offer them to God to be used. Later in the book of Romans, Paul urges believers to take action in this area of their bodies.
Therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God. Romans 12:1-2
We must first recognize that our bodies are living. The heart is pumping blood through our veins, our lungs are breathing, and we are alive. Therefore, as we live we must be willing to allow the Lord to take our living bodies, and ALL THE PARTS of our bodies and offer them as a sacrifice to be used by Him daily.
It is not only a mindset issue but a physical one. The act of acknowledging all the parts of our body to be used for God’s glory and honor is a physical action to be taken. Even the parts that are unseen by the human eye. Once we acknowledge this and give them over to the Lord, then He is free to place the armor required for our bodies to be used as weapons for righteousness.
Cover Your Body
Weapons are useless unless they have been built according to the proper code and the right materials used. So too if our bodies are to be used as a weapon for righteousness, then it needs to be clothed with the proper gear. The appropriate clothing we are to put on in this battle is found in Ephesians.
Finally, be strengthened by the Lord and by His vast strength. Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the tactics of the Devil. For our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the world powers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavens. This is why you must take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having prepared everything, to take your stand. Stand, therefore, with truth like a belt around your waist, righteousness like armor on your chest, and your feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace. In every situation take the shield of faith, and with it you will be able to extinguish the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is God’s word. Ephesians 6:10-17
The parts of ourselves that are living and have been offered as a sacrifice are now free to be clothed with the armor necessary to fight, and the battle begins.
Use Your Body
With our bodies offered as a sacrifice, clothed in the armor, we are now ready for the body to be used as a weapon.
But, how do we activate the weapon?
One of the greatest activations tools in our armor is God’s Word hidden in our hearts (Psalm 119:11). When we hide God’s Word in our hearts, then sin becomes harder to dwell. It becomes easier to live in the Spirit and not in the flesh. Also, God’s Word is more readily available to be used as a sword against the enemy and sin when we know it (Ephesians 6:17).
Jesus is our most significant example. Jesus had His Father’s Word hidden in His heart which enabled him to take action against the enemy by using it as a sword against temptation (Matthew 4:11).
The next way to activate our body as a weapon for righteousness is through prayer.
We are commanded over and over in God’s Word to pray. First Thessalonians states: pray continually (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
Paul reminds the Philippians to activate the body as a weapon for righteousness by not giving in to worry, but instead through prayer.
Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7).
Through prayer, petitions, and thanksgiving, the peace of God will come to us and will GUARD our hearts and minds. Do you see the connection between our bodies as weapons and the battle terminology used by Paul in regards to the fight?
Scripture memory and prayer are fantastic ways to activate our bodies as weapons for righteousness. However, there is yet one more way to activate our bodies, and it is through worship.
The book, Bruchko (excellent read and highly recommended) is the true story of how God brought the gospel to the Motilone Indians through His young servant Bruchko. Reading through the book and considering the way our bodies are used as weapons of righteousness, a scene immediately came to mind. Shortly after the first Indian (Bobby) became a believer, their tribe discovers that the “tiger has spoken,” and the “spirits will come out of the rocks.” Fear grips the house, and they each begin their incantations and rituals to ward the spirits off.
Bobby finds himself trying to understand if Jesus can be taken away from him and asks Bruchko if it is possible. Bruchko is ashamed he doesn’t have an answer and tells Bobby he will have to ask Jesus who will have the answer.
Soon after nightfall, the rise of chants fill the air as the weight of an invisible hand seems to descend on the house. Bruchko searches for Bobby to see if he has fallen back into the superstitions of his people only to find Bobby up in his hammock where the following scene unfolds.
When I [Bruchko] got high enough, I looked into Bobby’s hammock. His eyes were open. He had a big smile on his face. The song he was singing was different:
Jesus is in my mouth;
I have a new speech.
Jesus is in my mouth;
No one can take Him from me.
I speak Jesus’ words.
I am Jesus’ boy;
He has filled my stomach, and I am no longer hungry.
As I clung to the palm tree pole, Bobby looked straight at me. He was safe. He knew Jesus. He was doing the thing I should have had the vision to suggest. He was keeping the evil spirits away by singing a song of Jesus.
I joined him in the song. All that night we sang. When dawn came, no one had died. It was the first time in anyone’s memory that the spirits had walked an no one had died.
Wow! When we offer our bodies in worship, they become weapons of righteousness used against the powers of darkness in this world.
That morning in Uganda when upset stomachs, headaches, and sore muscles began to creep into our team, the Lord guided me to pray that each part of our physical body would be offered to Him as a weapon of righteousness. I didn’t fully understand at the time that as I hid God’s Word in my heart, prayed, and worshipped the Lord with my whole being, my body was becoming a weapon of righteousness to be used against the enemy.
Our whole team was able to go out into the field or in nearby huts to continue sharing the gospel that day. The enemy was defeated, and we were drawn more into the presence of our Lord and Savior.