Coffee With God: 9/15/2023 | 1 Thessalonians 5:8-10
"But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him."
Have you ever thought about faith, hope, and love as body armor?
Don’t feel bad if you haven’t. It's not exactly normal outside of our faith to think about love as something that shields us and hope as something that protects us.
But let’s explore this for a moment.
The analogy is not hard to figure out. Body armor like the items mentioned in 1 Thessalonians 5 was used to protect soldiers in battle and potentially save their lives.
Are faith, hope, and love so important in the life of a Christian that they are potentially lifesaving?
But how, exactly, do faith, hope, and love preserve us?
Love acts as a shield to the believer in that it helps us take the focus off ourselves. If we aim to love others the way God loves us, there becomes very little room in our lives for disappointment.
If we truly put others before ourselves, the ability of our flesh to be self-seeking, easily offended, and high-minded is almost completely done away with.
Hope acts as protection because it calls us to constantly keep our minds and hearts set on what is to come, even amid life’s disappointments. A life that values the hope of our future salvation above everything is a life empowered to overcome every obstacle and persevere through trials.
And what about faith? Faith is the foundation for everything. Because of our faith in Jesus’s life, atoning death, and salvific resurrection, we have hope as the anchor of our soul and God’s love as the ever-present comfort in our hearts.
 When thinking of a breastplate, it might be helpful for the modern mind to picture a bullet-proof vest.
Faith, Love, and Hope: The Body Armor of a Believer (1 Thessalonians 5)