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Youth Messenger Online Edition

July-September

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The Helmet of Salvation
Jacob Hanuska

Hurry up, we’re gonna miss the sunrise!” Kyle said as he rushed out the door.

“Right behind ’ya!” Tom exclaimed.

“Where’s your helmet?”

“I don’t really need it—we’ve done the trail hundreds of times! I could basically do it with my eyes closed.”

Tom put his hands out in front of him and started to walk around, pretending to be blind.

Kyle chuckled and shook his head.

“Well alright then, looks like you won’t be seeing the sunrise anyway. Let’s go.”

The two boys raced down the trail, with pedals pumping and wheels spinning faster and faster. The cool morning air surrounded and excited them as they sped around every twist and turn.

“Look, no hands!” Tom chanted.

As he looked back to see his brother’s reaction, Tom’s front wheel snagged a crooked root. He flipped over the handlebars and collided, head first, with the daunting tree in front of him. Kyle rushed over to see if his brother was okay. He turned Tom on his back and tried to get a response. After a few minutes of poking and clapping, Tom opened his eyes and groaned. He looked up at his brother who seemed relieved, but also slightly annoyed. As he tried to sit up, Tom felt a throbbing pain surging through his entire head as he realized his careless mistake.

We can clearly see from Tom’s unfortunate decision how important it is to use a helmet.

Now, there’s another helmet we learn about in the Bible, which is even more important for our safety and wellbeing than the bike helmet Tom was missing. This is the helmet of salvation.

To learn about the helmet of salvation, first we need to know what salvation is. Salvation is defined as deliverance from sin and its consequences; to be saved.

Why do we need to be saved?

Romans 3:23 and 6:23 tell us, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God,” “for the wages of sin is death.” We are all sinners, and we need to be saved because the punishment for sinning is death.

From where can we get salvation?

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8). Salvation is a free gift given to us by Jesus. It is not something that we can obtain on our own by being good.

So then how can we receive salvation and be saved?  

“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:31). We cannot save ourselves because we are sinners, but Jesus gave us this free gift of salvation. Our part is to receive His gift in faith, and obey Him.

Now that we know what salvation is, let’s learn what the helmet of salvation is.

“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. . . . And take the helmet of salvation” (Ephesians 6:11, 17).

Is Paul talking about a physical helmet that we need to put on and wear? Ephesians 6:12 explains, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” This means that the battles that we fight are not physical battles, but rather mental and spiritual battles. So the helmet of salvation that Paul talks about is a metaphorical helmet.

From what is the helmet protecting us?

The helmet protects the most important part of your body, the brain. The brain is the thinking center. The helmet protects us from doubts and temptations. It protects us from the fiery darts of the spiritual war going on around us.

How do you take up the helmet of salvation?

As mentioned previously, salvation is not something we can obtain on our own. God gives us the free gift of salvation, but we need to believe it, and have hope in Christ and assurance that we will be saved by His grace. This is taking the helmet of salvation.

Two extremes

Some believers have little or no assurance of their salvation. They often have doubts and look to themselves, thinking they will never be good enough to be saved. On the other hand, some people are overconfident about their salvation and just go around doing whatever they please because they figure that God will forgive them and they will be saved regardless of how they behave.

Where is the balance?

Having a true balance of assurance means that we have full confidence in the Lord, and complete distrust in ourselves. Proverbs 3:5, 6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

Conclusion

The helmet of salvation—the assurance of God’s saving grace—is a powerful piece of armor that is freely provided to all who choose to put it on. It gives us confidence in Christ’s promise that even though we have all sinned and deserve to die, He paid the price for our sins. We can live with the wonderful assurance this promise brings, by personally accepting His priceless gift. We just need to make sure that we do not abuse the gift that God has given us. Just like Tom’s helmet couldn’t protect him if he left it in the closet, God’s helmet of salvation can’t protect us unless we choose to put it on and believe in His saving grace.