Part 5: Helmet Of Salvation.
After the Shield of Faith, Paul goes on to tell us in Ephesians 6:17, to take the Helmet of Salvation.
Before Paul wrote about the armor, Isaiah tells us this in Isaiah 59:15-17 which speaks about our Messiah, dressed for the battle.
“Truth is lacking, and one who turns aside from evil makes himself a prey.
Now the Lord saw, and it was displeasing in His sight that there was no justice.
And He saw that there was no one, and was amazed that there was not one to intercede; then His own arm brought salvation to Him, and His righteousness upheld Him.He put on righteousness like a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on His head; and He put on garments of vengeance for clothing and wrapped Himself with zeal as a cloak.”
We see here that truth was lacking and this caused the Lord to fight the battle. Maybe this is why Paul started with the Belt of Truth.
1 Thessalonians 5:8 tells us, “But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.”
So salvation is not only our hope, but it is our goal. This is why Paul tells us to put on the armor, starting with truth and then righteousness, having our feet prepared to give the good news and then having faith to do all of this, as we fight the enemy of our souls.
Romans 8:24-25 says, “For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.”
Salvation, what is it really? Well. it’s definition says, “ It is preservation or deliverance from harm, ruin or loss.”
Psalm 25:5 tells us, “ Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; for You I wait all the day.”
We know that God is our salvation. We know because Scripture tells us, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life,” (John 3:16). We also know because Yeshua’s name means God’s Salvation. (note: only the Hebrew name of Yeshua means salvation, not Jesus)
This is what Psalm 62:1-2,5-7 tells us about Yeshua, our salvation. Take note how the Psalmist waits and rests in God. This is the Shield of Faith. This is the spiritual battle being fought.
“My soul waits in silence for God alone; from Him comes my salvation.
He alone is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I will not be greatly shaken. My soul, wait in silence for God alone, for my hope is from Him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation, my refuge; I will not be shaken. My salvation and my glory rest on God; the rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.”
As believers we know that Yeshua delivered us from sin and we also know that the consequence of that sin was death.
Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gracious gift of God is eternal life in Messiah Yeshua our Lord.”
But we also know that we sin, and at times we do not repent of that sin and at times it even causes us to fall.
Hebrews 10:26-27, “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.”
Many people think that the Helmet of Salvation has to do with our thoughts, but James 1:13-16 tells us this, “When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”
In Matthew 3:8 we see John the Baptist addressing the Pharisees and Sadducees, with this statement, “Produce fruit in keeping with repentance.”
We must have evidence of the repenting of our sins, or else, we ourselves can not be sure that we have truly repented.
So we see that the Helmet of Salvation has to do with hope, and the devil wants us to lose that battle. We must put on the helmet to remind us of the goal. To do that we need to examine ourselves as Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 13:5,
“Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Messiah Yeshua is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!”
And Peter tells us in 2 Peter 1:10-11, “Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Messiah Yeshua.”
Salvation is like that helmet, and that helmet is like a tent that we wear over our heads, as if to say that it is our shelter, to protect us from our enemy.
Psalm 17:8 says, “Keep me as the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings.”
Again Psalm 27:5 says, “For on the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; He will hide me in the secret place of His tent; He will lift me up on a rock.”
Paul writes in 2 Timothy 4:6-8, “ For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.”
Paul fought the spiritual battle, he contended for the faith, he finished the race and now he was confident in his hope of salvation.
Revelation 2:10 tells us, “Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, so that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.”
Revelation reminds us that we can have the victory in the mists of our trials, because we wear the helmet of Salvation.
We have the hope of salvation, when we have God as our source, when we have God at the center of our lives.
The Tent of Meeting
So the Helmet of Salvation is the Tabernacle, and more precisely, the tent that held the Tabernacle, also called the Tent of Meeting. In Hebrew it is called the Mishkan. Because the people traveled in the wilderness for forty years, the Tabernacle had to be portable. It also had to be separated from the people, for it was holy. To do that, they had to make it like a tent. They divide the tent in sections, the outer court, the holy place and the most holy place called the holy of holies. It was here that God met with Moses and Aaron. The tent had one entrance or door. The Tent of Meeting gave the people a place to come to seek and worship the Lord, and Moses would gather the people at the entrance or door of the Tent of Meeting to speak with them about the will of God. (Exodus 33)
Yeshua is the door as John 10:9-10 tells us, “ I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”
The Tent of Meeting, or often called the Tabernacle is a picture of God’s protection against the enemy.
Psalm 118:5-15 tells us, “From my distress I called upon the Lord; the Lord answered me and put me in an open space. The Lord is for me; I will not fear; What can man do to me? The Lord is for me among those who help me; therefore I will look with satisfaction on those who hate me. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in people. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in noblemen. All nations surrounded me; in the name of the Lord I will certainly fend them off. They surrounded me, yes, they surrounded me; in the name of the Lord I will certainly fend them off. They surrounded me like bees; they were extinguished like a fire of thorn bushes; in the name of the Lord I will certainly fend them off. You pushed me violently so that I was falling, but the Lord helped me. The Lord is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation. The sound of joyful shouting and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; the right hand of the Lord performs valiantly.”
The spiritual battle comes out in the physical realm, because the devil uses people to attack us. But we do not wrestle with flesh and blood, but with the rulers and evil forces in the heavenlies. Either way, God is still our protector and He gives us our victory. This is the Helmet of Salvation, this was the Tabernacle. It sat as a sign of God’s presence with the people. The pillar of smoke by day and the pillar of fire by night, God was there to protect his people, for He was their salvation. He was there to keep them from suffering harm, ruin, or loss. Yes, He was their preservation, their salvation, but all throughout the generations God has done this for His people. We have our trials and tribulations, we have our battles and even though at times it may seem that we have lost the battle, with God we will still win the war. And our victory is our salvation. Our God, the King, who wears the crown of glory, tells us now, to put on the Helmet of Salvation, as Isaiah said, He Himself put on the Helmet of Salvation, and we shall wear it like a crown.
This is how Job answered his accusers. Job 31:35-37, “If only I had someone to hear my case! Here is my signature; let the Almighty answer me. Let my opponent compose his indictment. I would surely carry it on my shoulder
and wear it like a crown. I would give him an account of all my steps;
I would approach him like a prince.”
Numbers 2:1-2 says this, “The Lord said to Moses and Aaron: “The Israelites are to camp around the Tent of Meeting some distance from it, each of them under their standard and holding the banners of their family.”
This picture of Israel camped around the Tent of Meeting tells us that God must be the center of our lives and He must be our source.
It also shows us a picture of the Helmet of Salvation, which is worn around the head. God is our head, and we must wrap ourselves around Him.
When Balak wanted Baalam to curse Israel, this is what Numbers 24:2-5 records. “When Balaam looked out and saw Israel encamped tribe by tribe, the Spirit of God came on him and he spoke his message: “The prophecy of Balaam son of Beor, the prophecy of one whose eye sees clearly,the prophecy of one who hears the words of God, who sees a vision from the Almighty, who falls prostrate, and whose eyes are opened: “How beautiful are your tents, Jacob, your dwelling places, Israel!” Balaam could not curse but only bless Israel, for the sight he saw was that of a people mighty before their God. This is what the devil sees when we wear the Helmet of Salvation as a crown.
Sukkot/The Feast of Tabernacles
All of this only points to the appointed time of Sukkot. Sukkot which means booths or tents. Leviticus 23:41 tells us, “So you shall celebrate it as a feast to the Lord for seven days in the year. It shall be a permanent statute throughout your generations; you shall celebrate it in the seventh month.”
Sukkot is a beautiful celebration of God’s faithfulness to His people. But Sukkot is a picture of those righteous who will live for eternity with the Lord,
Sukkot is not like the other two feasts, which are solemn. No, Sukkot is a celebration. It is called the “Season of Rejoicing.” We have just come out of forty days of repentance, with Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur and now is the time to celebrate our future with our Lord for eternity.
The people would make pilgrimage to Jerusalem singing the “Songs of Ascents’, which were Psalms 120-134.
The last day of Sukkot is called the Hoshana Rabbah, “The Great Salvation.” The priests would circle the altar seven times reciting prayers and singing from the Psalms, all the while swaying palm branches. They would carry these huge palm branches and lay them to form a tent or a sukkah.
We also see this story recorded in Mark 11:4-10, “They went away and found a colt tied at the door, outside in the street; and they untied it. And some of the bystanders were saying to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” And they told them just as Yeshua had said, and they gave them permission. They brought the colt to Yeshua and put their cloaks on it; and He sat on it. And many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches which they had cut from the fields. And those who went in front and those who followed were shouting: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord; Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David; Hosanna in the highest!””
Now this was not during the feast of Sukkot, but the people knew the Scriptures, and the images of Sukkot, for it says in Zechariah 9:9, “ Rejoice greatly, daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is righteous and endowed with salvation, humble, and mounted on a donkey, even on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”
Even though they were expecting their Messiah to come during the feast of Sukkot, all they knew to do was wave palm branches and and shout out
Psalm 118:25, “Save us, we pray, O Lord! O Lord, we pray, give us success!”
There was another beautiful ceremony called the “Water Drawing Ceremony.” John 7:37-38 tells us this about Yeshua, “On the last day, that great day of the feast, Yeshua stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”
Yeshua was referring to the coming of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
Sukkot also reminds us, as we too, are living in our Sukkah, or tent, that once there was a people who lived in tents, who surrounded themselves around another tent, a tent that housed the presence of God. He provided food and water for forty years and He kept their shoes and clothes from wearing out as
Psalm 121 says, “I will raise my eyes to the mountains; from where will my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to slip; He who watches over you will not slumber. Behold, He who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your protector; the Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun will not beat down on you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul. The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in from this time and forever.”
This is Sukkot! How could these people live in the wilderness and not be burnt from the sun or at night when the sun went down and the temperature dropped and they did not freeze. Day or night God was in their midst. God was their source. The center of their lives and this is what Sukkot reminds us of, and this is why it is a celebration. One day we will live with our Salvation, Yeshua, for eternity.
Let’s take a closer look at the Fall Feasts. We looked at Rosh Hashanah, which we spoke of when we looked at the Breastplate of Righteousness and repentance, also the Altar of Incense, which represented the prayers of the saints. Rosh Hashanah is a picture of the gates of heaven being opened for the righteous to enter. We saw that it was a time of fasting and prayer and humbling of oneself in repentance.
We looked at the Belt of Truth and saw just how important it was to walk in truth. Yom Kippur is a picture of the day that the books are opened and the names are read from the Book of Life and the Ark of the Covenant with the mercy seat, or could be called the seat of judgement sat upon it. At the end of Yom Kippur there is a service called the closing of the gates, for only the righteous souls whose names are written in the Book of Life may remain. This is certainly an illustration of Noah who enters the ark and God then closes the door.(Genesis 7:13-16)
And so many of Yeshua’s parables where the door is shut and no longer can anyone enter, (Matthew 25:1-13).
Yeshua in Sukkot
The theme of Sukkot is “God with us.” John 1:14 says this about Yeshua our salvation, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us; and we saw His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
Because the theme of Sukkot is the same as what Scripture tells us about the birth of the Messiah, it is widely believed that Yeshua was born on the first day of Sukkot. Remember the Tabernacle that dwelt with the people, so too, Yeshua dwells with us. It only makes sense that our salvation should come at a time like this. The people of His day believed their Messiah was coming during the feast of Sukkot and we today know that Yeshua laid in a Sukkah, because we see that imagery every year, as the world celebrates His birthday every December 25th, which was chosen by the Emperor Constantine to coincide with the birth of the sun god. It is also believed that Yeshua was circumcised on the eighth day of Sukkot, which is a celebration of the Word. The Fall Feasts are a great reminder that Yeshua is coming again and we need to be prepared by having the armor as our lifestyle.
Today when you take on the enemy of your soul, remember Yeshua, and the hope of a Great Salvation. Put that helmet on and let it wrap around your head like the tent, to remind you of God’s ever presence, and celebrate before the Lord for He is our eternal home. This will give you confidence and this will give you the strength to continue the spiritual battle.
Soon we’ll be looking at the Spring Feasts, but one more piece of the armor to go.