The Literal Interpretation
The Shoes of the Roman solider was one of the reasons that the Roman army was so successful in battles. It had three things other shoes of the era did not: small spikes on the bottom, a very thick sole, and they were accompanied by greaves. What does all that mean? Glad you asked!
- Spikes: They gave traction and mobility. They could move forward on ground where others would lose traction (like loose gravel or sandy ground) and more importantly in my opinion is that in hand to hand combat they could not be pushed back easily. They could dig in and hold their ground!
- Thick soles: one tactic of armies that were on defense is that they would lace the ground with stones, glass shards, thin wire spikes and the like. Soldiers who went barefoot or had light-weight or flimsy footwear would be slowed down, injured or even stopped from advancing. They would become immobilized and easy prey.
- The Greaves: These attached to the shins and protected the lower leg. Imagine being in a phalanx or turtle formation. Everyone on the outside lines has their shields up and interlocked but the enemy comes down to attack. They rush us and what happens? the people with the shields start slipping back! They are wielding swords and are swinging low, going below the shields, and cutting down the legs of the defenders! those inside or on the second line holding our spears are open to attack!
Their is importance in having the feet shod or covered properly.
The Spiritual Application
We need the proper footwear to have the spiritual victory. We see the spiritual correlations on the literal interpretations.
This preparation will help you to stand (…having done all to stand, v. 13) with your feet planted firmly on the Word of God and stay there, unmoved by the devil’s threats and lies.
It will protect us when we walk through the rough places and keep us steady in the heat of a battle.
What is the Footwear of the Christian Warrior?
Ephesians 6:15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
The word preparation means to make ready. As a good solider is ready to do battle we need to be prepared to do battle by being equipped with gospel of peace.
The Gospel is the glad tidings, the good news. We have a message of the Good News of Jesus’ death, burial, and Resurrection. He died for our sins and is our Saviour, and that is a message worth spreading.
Excerpt from Christian Warrior V: Shodding the Feet