May the Spirit of Peace, the Spirit of Joy and the Spirit of Grace be with You!
Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth.
I am so excited to write about the belt of truth. I believe that out of all of the components of the armor of God that it is the most difficult to understand in terms of purpose.
The helmet of salvation guards our head, our minds. The breastplate of righteousness guards our hearts. The Sword of the Spirit and the shield of faith enables us to both attack the enemy and defend ourselves. Yet, what does the belt do? Is it there to simply hold the sword?
The answer is no.
To explain why, I will first take you to Elijah. Out of righteous anger, Elijah spoke by the inspiration and power of the Spirit of God that rain would no longer fall down on the lands of Israel, and it was so. Yet, there came to be a time when the Lord led Elijah to pray for rain to once again come to Israel.
After the Lord answered Elijah’s prayers, Elijah gave instructions to Ahab, who was then the King of Israel. Then, the Word in 1 Kings 18:46 speaks: “Then the hand of the Lord came upon Elijah; and he girded up his loins and ran ahead of Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.” This is of the New King James Version. I looked into other versions, and they describe it as if he was securing his clothing so that he would be able to run. I disagree with this portrayal. I believe that he was binding up his waist as an act of strengthening himself for the run to the gates of Jezreel. And where was Elijah running from? The top of Carmel, a high mountain ridge (Got Questions Ministries 2019). So, while Ahab had his chariot to take him from Carmel to Jezreel, Elijah ran. It surely was not easy run, and that is why he girded up his waist.
We also see this act of girding up the waist in 2 Kings 4:29, in which Elisha gives Gehazi instructions for a boy’s healing. Some versions speak of “getting ready”, others speak of the tying up of one’s garments and there are also those that speak of the girding of one’s loins. We see the same case when it comes to Jeremiah 1:17. All in all, these passages speak on the preparation of one’s self for a great task that requires strength and endurance.
In Job 38:2-3, God speaks to Job: ““Who is this who darkens counselby words without knowledge?3 Now prepare yourself like a man;I will question you, and you shall answer Me.” Other versions use words such as “dress,” “brace,” and “gird.” This again speaks of one readying themselves for a great task. In this case, the task was to debate with God. Yelp!
But it is not only a man who is to gird himself with strength. Proverbs 31:17 speaks even more clearly on the girding of oneself and how that pertains to strength. The verse speaks: “She girds herself with strength, and strengthens her arms.” And most versions of the Bible agree with the word “gird” and the word “strength.” Proverbs 31:10 speaks of the virtuous woman of God as being a ruby. Precious stones are three things: invaluable, beautiful and STRONG. So is a virtuous woman. But why a ruby, and not a diamond or a sapphire or an emerald or any other precious stone? Well, rubies can be red and the virtuous woman of God is cleansed and covered by the blood of Jesus Christ.
In continuation… So, then, we get to Ephesians 6 which speaks of the belt of truth. When learning about the belt of truth, the first thing that came to my mind is the Haitian practice that Haitian women have of tying their waists with a garment when either tired or experiencing back pain. They do this so that they are able to withstand and accomplish more or greater tasks.
Is this actually effective?
I did some research to find the answer to this question. The first topic that came up was weight training. When one partakes in weight training, if one wears a weight training belt, one will stabilize the spine, reduce stress on the spine, create better body biomechanics and increase power, strength and muscle growth. The belt does not carry the weight for the body. Instead it strengthens the body to carry weight (Stoppani 2018). Wearing a weight training belt increases the use of the erector spinae muscles by 25 percent. It also increases the use of the rectus abdominis muscles. Overall, a weight training belt girds up the body to exert greater strength and endurance. Of course, this is all when it is used properly (Stoppani 2018).
I then wondered about pregnancy and if a wrap actually helps with back support and reducing the weight of a pregnant belly. It ends up to be that wearing maternity belts or belly bands does decrease back and joint pain from pregnancy by giving support and strength to the lower back. They also help to stabilize the sacroiliac joint, which becomes loose as a result of an increase of the relaxin hormone (Healthline Media n.d.). Another pain that pregnant woman experience, more during the second trimester, is round ligament pain. Maternity belts and belly bands also help with reducing this pain by evenly distributing the pain to the back and abdomen (Healthline Media n.d.).
So, the answer is clearly, yes. Tying up the waist to strengthen the body is effective. For, almost all types of waist belts will give physical support to the body and give pain relief. So, then, I can say that taking upon one’s self the belt of truth enables one to be strong, stand firm and carry life’s burdens.
But why the truth? Why is our strength found in truth?
When we know the truth, we do not give in to the devil’s lies, but instead keep running and persevering.
But there has to be more to this. Let us dig deeper. My first question about the belt of truth pertaining to truth was: “Well, the Word is the Truth, and there is already the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. So, why did truth have to manifest individually?” The answer is that the belt of truth does not only pertain to biblical truth but also to factual truth.
There are certain truths that are not overtly stated in the Bible. For example, 1+1=2. That is the truth. Where in the Bible does the Lord overtly speak this truth? Though He is the creator of mathematics, we do not see the laws of mathematics, which are truth, overtly stated in the Bible. We can say the same for scientific laws.
Going beyond the empirical, let us go to the person. I am Haitian. That is the truth. Where in the Bible does it specifically state that the writer behind Emery in Christ is Haitian?
But let us get into more serious truths. Many times, we cease to persevere through because we do not gird ourselves with both biblical truths and factual truths. I already shared many examples of girding oneself up with biblical truths in my post on the shield of faith, but I will give more and will also give some examples of girding oneself up with factual truths.
A person can either believe in the lie that they have sinned too much or too greatly to ever be forgiven or strengthen his or her self in the truth that Jesus already gave forgiveness for ALL sins and that all that one has to do is receive His forgiveness. And being strong, one seeks to know Christ and be known by Christ.
A family man who just lost his job can either believe in the lie that he is now a complete failure and worthless to his family and society and commit suicide or strengthen himself in the truth that the purpose of his life goes beyond a job or career and family and society. For, he was made by Christ for Christ. And being strong, he is able to fight in the Lord to get back on his feet productively and financially.
A Christian woman with marital issues may believe in the lie that her husband is a monster who will never change or strengthen herself in the truth that God is able to change him. And being strong, she keeps on fighting on the battlefield of prayer.
A young man may believe in the lie that his eligibility for marriage depends on having a fancy car to take his girl out on dates, a big house to boast about and extremely expensive clothes to parade in, and never being able to quickly reach those goals, he can never receive the jewel that the Lord has for him. Or he can strengthen himself in the truth that a good husband is first a man of God and good character, and then, a man full of love, a man who is faithful and a man who is simply able to provide and protect. And being strong, he keeps on persevering to be the man who Christ wants him to be so that he can receive his ruby.
A young woman may believe in the lie that she is not beautiful enough or good enough for any good man and settle with any type of man doing any type of things. Or she can strengthen herself in the truth that in having received Christ, she is the Father’s precious daughter, and He is preparing the best of the best for her and will prepare her to receive the best of the best. Being strengthened, she preserves herself in modesty and purity.
An individual may believe the lie that they are not smart enough to go to a good college and settle for any type of education. Or that individual may find strength in the truth that hard work and grit are greater determiners of success than intelligence. They can have a growth mindset. Being strengthened, that individual works hard and hard and persevere and enter a good college.
I actually would like to share a real-life story that touches on this. There is a person that I know who was getting Cs and maybe even Ds in PE when he was in middle school. When I would look at his report card, which was not the prettiest, I would exclaim: “How does one get bad grades in PE?! All you do is run and play sports!” I still to this day do not understand. But a few years later, out of the ordinary, I said to this individual: “You know that you are smart, right? You just have to do the work.” For me, I was just speaking into the air. But for him, I was speaking a truth that would break him out of a lie. For, based on what people would say of him, he considered himself as someone who was not serious and who did not take school seriously. What others believed of him, he believed of himself, and what he believed of himself, he lived out. Yet, when I told him that he was actually smart, it was like scales fell from his eyes. Before I knew it, he was bringing home good report cards and honor roll certificates, which he would post up with pride. One day, I saw a certificate from a scholar program hanged up, and he pointed to it and said: “Look, I got a certificate for being smart and Black.” And he got into a good college. The practical truth that I spoke to him strengthened him.
An individual may believe lies about themselves and who they are and go far from the Lord’s will for his or her life. Or he or she may find strength in the truth of who he or she is. Being strengthened in the truth, that person seeks to be who Christ wants him or her to be.
I have another real-life story to share. I was having a chat with an individual recently, and the individual told me that I was prideful and hateful. Wow, now those are some intense words. But why did that person tell me this? Well, I told them that no one can understand the Bible without the Holy Spirit. But why did I tell her this? Well, she told me that Christians do not understand the Bible but Jews do, and she is Jewish.
And the Lord worked in my mind so that I could understand this: Do not always believe what people have to say about you. About your character. About who you are and will be. About what you can achieve or cannot achieve. Know who you are. And be real with yourself. No, I may not be prideful and hateful, but I will also be honest with myself about my true weaknesses.
Also, many times, people will say things about you that they know to be true of themselves. The reason why some people will put on you what they know to be true of themselves is because it makes them feel better about themselves. When they feel like they are down to the ground, they like to try to drag people who are standing up to be there with them. Other times, they like to boast themselves up. They want people to think that they are standing up instead of sitting up. Of course, it is only a momentary “joy.”
So, be aware of those wolves who are looking to tare you apart. It is an honor to receive the rebuking of a wise man (Ecclesiastes 7:5). But as for the tales of a fool? Do not give them value (Proverbs 18:2-3). Laugh and move on. God laughs at them, too (Psalm 37:12-15).
Know the truth of who people are. Hmm. Wow. How many times do we give in to someone destroying us because we could not see that they were wolves in sheep clothing? Or how many people have lost money because they could not see that someone was working to scam them? Or… Gird yourselves up with the truth. Stand strong against the ruses that the devil or life will through your way.
And only the Holy Spirit can truly open up your eyes to who people are (Matthew 7:16; John 16:13; 1 John 4:1). Ask Him: “God open my eyes.” He will answer.
Stand firm in the truth. In the truth of who God is, His Word. In the truth of who you are. In the truth of who people are. In the truth of life’s situations.
And here is some good truth that I simply must share:
“He who corrects a scoffer gets shame for himself,
And he who rebukes a wicked man only harms himself.
8 Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you;
Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you.
I have been looking for who wise men and women. I have only seen few.
Lastly, I also wanted to share this video in which a woman warrior is in an arena. On a cautionary note, this clip contains some gruesome visuals.
I love how in this clip, she uses her shield both defensively and offensively. The Lord just kept putting that image in my head as I wrote my last post and that was before I knew of this video.
I also love how in this battle it is all against one. It leads my heart to Psalm 27:1-3, which speaks: “The Lord is my light and my salvation;Whom shall I fear?The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?2 When the wicked came against me to eat up my flesh, my enemies and foes, they stumbled and fell.3 Though an army may encamp against me, my heart shall not fear;Though war may rise against me, in this I will be confident.”
Are you in a situation in which you feel like everyone is against you and it is you fighting all alone? Well, if you are a child of God, that is a lie. It is not all against you. It is all against God.
Much love and blessings,
Emery in Christ
P.S. All Bible verse are from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.
Got Questions Ministries. 2019. What is the significance of Mount Carmel in the Bible?July 26. Accessed November 9, 2019. https://www.gotquestions.org/mount-Carmel.html.
Healthline Media. n.d. "Healthline Parenthood." Healthline.Accessed November 9, 2019. https://www.healthline.com/health/pregnancy/belly-band-benefits.
Stoppani, Jim. 2018. "3 Key Benefits Of Wearing A Weightlifting Belt." Body Building.September 19. Accessed November 9, 2019. https://www.bodybuilding.com/content/3-key-benefits-of-wearing-a-weightlfting-belt.html.
But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
Jésus répondit: Il est écrit: L'homme ne vivra pas de pain seulement, mais de toute parole qui sort de la bouche de Dieu