And take THE HELMET OF SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit,
which is the word of God.
Ephesians 6:17 (NASB)
As the helmet defends the head, a principal part of the body, so this “hope of salvation” defends the soul, the principal part of man. The helmet protects the believer from dangerous or deadly impressions of sin or Satan. It defends the Christian because it is hard for temptations to snare a person who is satisfied with princely favor and who stands on the stairs of hope, expecting to be called at any time to the highest place a king can bestow.
On the other hand, weapons of rebellion are usually forged in discontent. When subjects think they are neglected by their prince, this feeling softens them to receive any impression of disloyalty that the king’s enemy attempts to stamp upon them. Thus once the soul fears God has no inheritance for him he will commit any sin, great or small, at the sound of the tempter’s trumpet.
The helmet makes the heart bold. As the helmet defends the soldier’s head from wounds, so it also protects the Christian’s heart from failing. Whoever wears this helmet need never be ashamed to boast in his holy God. For God Himself allows him to do this and confirms the rejoicing of his hope. “You shall know that I am the Lord: for they shall not be ashamed that wait for me” (Isaiah 49:23).
Confidence in God made David courageous in the midst of his enemies: “Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear” (Psalm 27:3). He had his helmet of salvation on and therefore could declare, “Now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me” (v. 6).
A man cannot drown as long as his head is above water, and now it is the work of hope to do this for the Christian in dangerous places. “When these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draws nigh” (Luke 21:28). Only Christ can tell His disciples to lift up their heads when they see other “men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth” (v. 26).