Dear eNews Friends & Family,
Welcome to July and welcome to this month’s prayer and fasting moment!
“…Rise up Captains and oil the shields!” Isaiah 21:5b NASB
In Isaiah 21, Isaiah writes of a vision he saw – the forward advance of an incoming army. The vision was terrifying and he prophetically cried out, “Rise up captains and oil the shields!”
In ancient times there were often two kinds of shields in use by armed forces;
The first was sometimes called a ‘Beauty Shield’, a small, light shield used for ceremonies and special occasions. Then there was the robust, larger-shield; vital and essential for any fighting force.
It is this larger shield that Isaiah refers to, and it’s also this shield that Paul refers to in Ephesians 6:16 when he writes “in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.”
This large shield – specifically of the Roman Empire – was made with two layers of wood and six layers of interwoven leather. Combined, it was as strong as steel.
The most important factor was to keep it oiled. The oil kept the leather in good condition and made it extremely slippery for anything to attach or penetrate it. Every Roman soldier carried a bottle of oil and daily he would oil or ‘anoint’ his shield. If the leather dried out it would quickly crack and even become flammable!
There is a sad account in 2 Samuel 1:21 which reads: “For there the shield of the mighty was defiled, The shield of Saul, not anointed with oil.”
The word for oiled is the same as anointed. Following Saul’s death, this is the lament they sang over him, pointing out the state of his shield – which reflected the sad and sorry state of his life. Far from the Lord. No longer anointed.
CHURCH – We need to make sure our shields are well oiled. Our shield is the Shield of Faith. – How do we keep it oiled?
“But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit,” – Jude 20:20 NASB
Have you prayed in the spirit lately? Have you oiled your shield?
Saul became an unanointed king lying dead on the battlefield. An unfortunate statistic. Why?
- His life was marked by disobedience and rebellion. (1 Samuel 15)
- He carried unbridled hatred and murderous anger towards David (1 Samuel 19)
- He moved from the Word of God and into apostasy evening consulting with the witch of Endor. (1 Samuel 28)
- HE NEGLECTED TO OIL HIS SHIELD.
If faith is our shield, it needs to be well oiled and anointed. Your faith is anointed when you come in contact with the presence of God. What’s on HIM rubs off on you!
When we fast we are oiling our shields. When we come and soak up God’s presence we are oiling our shields. When we seek God and His word we are oiling our shields. When we oil our shields, our faith lives and overcomes all the fears, anxieties and other fiery darts that come our way. Fear is when we listen to the enemy’s intended outcome for us, but faith is when we declare to the enemy God’s intended outcome for HIM!
DON’T become a statistic Come and oil your shield with us this weekend!
VISION SUNDAY – 2nd July 11AM
- Glasgow (Southside Location Together As One)
- Edinburgh Leith
ENCOUNTER – 2nd July 6PM
- Glasgow Southside