Illuminated Armor of God

The Armor of God

If you joined me for my Webinar with  Nathan from the UK on the Armor of God and Spiritual Warfare, we were all challenged.  Nathan challenged us that the purpose of the armor of God is for war and that the armor should be likened to the biblical priestly  garments.  Ancient texts describe that Adam and Eve were beings of light.  They did not have skin as you and I but rather were luminous until they sinned against God.  Is the day coming when God will provide for us luminous garments as He prepares us to transition to our heavenly destination?  Building upon this discussion, we are going to dig in deeper. 

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For  our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers,  against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and  against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore  put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you  may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to  stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.  18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with  all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and  always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.  Ephesians

The Robe

With each passing day our garments, the  clothing we wear, especially robes will come to prominence.  We think  robes belong to past times such as the time of Jesus.  We will discover  robes are highly symbolic and will pay a part during the End of Days and  our translation to the heavenly realm.  It is interesting to note that  our robe will be in biblical symbolic colors and with biblically  significant numbers.

The signification of the robe, in the middle of the spiritual kingdom,  thus the truth itself which is there; for by Aaron's garments was  represented the Lord's spiritual kingdom, thus the truths which are  there, in their order and as this kingdom has been distinguished into  three degrees:

  • The inmost,
  • The middle, and
  • The external,

therefore the robe was signified that which is in the middle of this kingdom.
The reason why this kingdom has been distinguished into three degrees is  that the inmost there communicates with the celestial, and the external  with the natural, and therefore the middle partakes equally of both.  Moreover, in order that anything may be perfect, it must be  distinguished into three degrees. This is the case with heaven, and with  the goods and the truths in it. That there are three heavens is known;  consequently, there are three degrees of goods and truths there. Each  heaven also is distinguished into three degrees; for its inmost must  communicate immediately with what is higher, and it's external with what  is lower, and so, through these, its middle must communicate with both,  whence comes its perfection.

The case is the same with the interiors of man, which in general have  been distinguished into three degrees, namely, into the celestial, the  spiritual, and the natural; in like manner each of these into its own  three degrees; for a man who is in the good of faith and of love to the  Lord is a heaven in the least form corresponding to the greatest. Such  also is the case in all things of nature. That the nature of man has  been distinguished into three degrees and in general all his interior  and exterior things.

The reason for its being so is that everywhere there must be the end,  cause, and effect; the end must be the inmost, the cause the middle, and  the effect the ultimate, in order that the thing may be perfect. It is  from this that in the Word three signifies what is complete from  beginning to end. From all this it can be known why Aaron's garments of  holiness were an ephod, a robe, and a tunic; and that the ephod  represented the external, the robe the middle, and the tunic the inmost,  of the spiritual kingdom.

As the robe represented the middle in the spiritual kingdom, and the  middle partakes of both the others, it is taken representatively for  that kingdom itself, as in the first book of Samuel:--

Samuel turned about to go away, but Saul laid hold upon the skirt of  his robe, and it was rent; wherefore Samuel said, Jehovah shall rend  the kingdom of Israel from upon thee this day and shall give it to thy  companion who is better than thou (1 Samuel. 15:27, 28);

from these words, it is evident that the rending of the skirt of  Samuel's robe signified the rending of the kingdom of Israel from Saul,  for the kingdom of Israel signifies the Lord's spiritual kingdom. In  like manner in the same:--

David cut off the skirt of Saul's robe privily; and when he showed  it to Saul, Saul said, Now I know that reigning thou shalt reign, and  the kingdom of Israel shall continue in thine hand (1 Samuel 24:4, 5,  11, 20).

When Jonathan made a covenant with David, he stripped himself of his  robe, and gave it to David, even to his sword, to his bow, and to his  girdle (1 Sam. 18:3, 4);

by which was represented that Jonathan, who was the heir, abdicated the kingdom of Israel and transferred it to David.

As a robe represented the spiritual kingdom, so likewise it represented  the truths of this kingdom in general. The truths of this kingdom are  what are called spiritual truths, which are in the intellectual part of  man. These are signified by robes in Ezekiel:--

All the princes of the sea shall come down from upon their thrones,  and shall cast away their robes, and put off the garments of their  embroidery (Ezek. 26:16);

this is said of Tyre, by which are signified the knowledge of good and  truth; the vastation of these in the church is here described; the robes  which they shall cast away denote the truths of faith which are in the  intellectual part; but the garments of embroidery denote the  memory-knowledges which are in the natural. The reason why these truths  are signified is that the truth which belongs to the understanding  reigns in the Lord's spiritual kingdom but in the celestial kingdom the  good which belongs to the will. In Matthew:--

The scribes and Pharisees do all their works to be seen of men, and enlarge the borders of their robes (Matt. 23:5);

where enlarging the borders of the robes denotes to speak truths  grandiloquently, merely to be heard and seen by men. That such things  are signified by the robe, will be seen still better from the  description of it below in this chapter (verses 31-35).

And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which  are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?  Revelation 7:13

Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love  greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and  the chief rooms at feasts;  Luke 20:46

And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are  they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes,  and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.  Revelation 7:14

After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could  number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood  before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and  palms in their hands;  Revelation 7:9

And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said  unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their  fellow-servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they  were, should be fulfilled.  Revelation 6:11

Urim and Thummim

What exactly are the “Urim and Thummim” of Aaron’s breastplate? The Torah mentions it without any further explanation.

The Urim and Thummim (urim v’tumim)  refer to a single piece of parchment which had God’s ineffable name  inscribed on it (the Tetragrammaton). It was placed inside Aaron’s  breastplate (choshen), between the two folds. (The breastplate  consisted of a large rectangular piece of cloth doubled over. The outer  fold contained 4 rows of precious stones, 3 per row. Each stone had the  name of one of the Twelve Tribes etched onto it. It was worn over the  High Priest’s torso. See Exodus 28:15-30.)

The High Priests were able to communicate  prophetically with God. A great person such as a king would pose a  question before the fully-vested High Priest, and if the questioner and  the priest were both worthy, the letters on the breastplate stones would light up (or jut out, or arrange themselves)  in a manner which would convey the response. It was used only for  matters of national concern – such as for going to war or dividing the  Land of Israel.
The curious name of the parchment was based on its function: it would make its words “shine” (urim relates to mai’ir – to shine), and it would “make whole” its words (thumim relates to mitamemto make complete), meaning that its prophecies would always come true according to ancient manuscripts. 

The Torah only hints at this function of the breastplate. In Numbers  27:21 God tells Moses that his successor Joshua would stand before  Elazar the High Priest and inquire of him “the judgments of the Urim.”  Also, the breastplate is generally referred to as the “breastplate of justice” (choshen mishpat),  and in Exodus 28:30 the Torah states that by wearing it, Aaron would  “bear the judgments” of Israel. The meaning, according to one  interpretation, is that the High Priest would be responsible for  receiving judgments and decisions on Israel.

In the earlier books of the Prophets, there are several references to  the Urim and Thummim being used for guidance in national matters, or  more generally of Israel asking God directly for guidance (without  mention of a prophet) and which the Sages understand was via the  breastplate. See for example Judges 20:18, I Samuel 10:22, 14:37,  23:9-12, 28:6, 30:7-8, II Samuel 5:23, and 21:1.

There is another cryptic phrase that occasionally appears in the Torah  and which the commentators explain refers to the Urim and Thummim: the  “Keraiti and Plaiti” (e.g. II Samuel 8:18 and 20:7). These terms as  referring to the parchment in that they “cuttheir words (with clear-cut decisions) and they are wondrous in the words of ancient commentators.

Clearly, there was something so lofty and ethereal about the Urim and Thummim that it could not be defined with a simple word, even in as  precise and expressive a language like Hebrew. It could only be  described indirectly, via its function. For the Urim and Thummim did not  belong in the physical world at the world, and as a result, no concrete  word could define its essence. One commentator likewise describes the  parchment as “the handiwork of heaven,” and “a secret handed to Moses from the mouth of the Almighty” (commentary to Exodus 28:30).

The Second Temple lacked some of the most sacred items of the Temple of  Solomon. One of them was the Urim and Thummim parchment. (According to  some, the breastplate did contain the parchment but Israel was not on  the spiritual level for it to function prophetically.)

The Urim and Thummim (Heb. אוּרִים וְתֻמִּים) was a priestly device for  obtaining oracles. On the high priest's ephod (an apron-like garment)  lay a breastpiece (חֹשֶׁן) – a pouch inlaid with 12 precious stones  engraved with the names of the 12 tribes of Israel – that held the Urim  and Thummim (Ex. 28:15–30; Lev. 8:8). By means of the Urim, the priest  inquired of YHWH on behalf of the ruler (Num. 27:21; "only for the king,  the high court, or someone serving a need of the community"); they were  one of the three legitimate means of obtaining oracles in early Israel  (Urim, dreams, prophets; I Sam. 28:6). Owing to the oracular character  of the Urim, the breastpiece is called "the breastpiece of decision" (חֹשֶׁן הַמִּשְׁפָּט). (The right to work this oracle was reserved for the levitical priests (Deut. 33:8).

Occasionally the term ephod is used with reference to the Urim-oracle  associated with it (I Sam. 14:3, 18 [according to LXX]; 23:6, 9; 30:7).  The latest period for which there is evidence of use of the ephod-Urim  is that of David (but cf. Hos. 3:4); subsequently, oracles are conveyed  exclusively by prophets. In postexilic times, when the Urim oracle was  extinct, difficult questions were reserved "until a priest would appear  with Urim and Thummim" (Ezra 2:63; Neh. 7:65; cf. Sot. 9:12: "After the  former (i.e., pre-exilic) prophets died, the Urim and Thummim became  extinct"; and Josephus (Ant. 3:218), who avers that the oracle ceased  200 years before his time).

There is no biblical information on the appearance of the Urim, the  material out of which they were made (the Samaritan text of Ex. 28:30;  39:21 adds a command to manufacture the Urim and tells of its  execution), or the technique of their use. The most illuminating passage  is the Greek of I Samuel 14:41, whose underlying Hebrew is mutilated in  the received texts: הָבָה תָמִים, conventionally rendered "Give a perfect answer":

Saul said: "O YHWH God of Israel, why have you not answered your  servant this day? If the guilt is in me or in my son Jonathan. O YHWH  God of Israel, give Urim (הָבָה אוּרִים). But if this guilt is in your  people Israel, give Thummim (הָבָה תֻמִּים)."

From the use of the verbs in connection with the Urim (verses 41–42), it  appears that they were a kind of lot (marked) stones or sticks?), since  these verbs occur in connection with the casting of lots (Isa. 34:17; I  Sam. 10:20). They were suitable for indicating which of two  alternatives was right; hence inquiries to be decided by them were designed to elicit "yes" or "no" answers (I Sam. 23:10–12;30:8).

The etymology of the terms is obscure. From the Greek passage adduced  above, it seems that the two terms are the names of two objects. Hence  the conjecture that Urim derives from ʾ arar, "curse," and Thummim from tammam, "be whole," indicating negation and affirmation respectively. Tradition has connected the first term with light (ʾ or) or instruction (Aram. ʾ oraita). Thus in Greek, "declaration/revelation and truth," and Vulgate doctrina et veritas, "teaching and truth,"  treat the pair as a hendiadys meaning true instruction – with reference  to the oracle. (An apparent derivative with this meaning is the novel  coinage אורתום, found in the Qumran Thanksgiving Psalms Scroll with  reference to divine illumination.

Only priests speaking by means of the holy spirit and upon whom the Shekhinah rested could invoke them. The inquirer had his face directed toward the high priest, who directed himself to the Shekhinah. One did not inquire either in a loud voice or silently in his heart,  but like Hannah, who muttered her prayer (I Sam 1:13). Only one question  was to be put at a time, and if two were asked, only the first was  answered. Unlike the decrees of a prophet, those of the Urim and Thummim  could not be revoked. Only a king could inquire from the Urim and  Thummim.

Religion or Magic?

Religion and magic are often  distinguished by the ways they interact with the divine. For example,  religion represents the practice of a certain ethnic or political group  and is institutionalized. Its priests are publicly legitimized and  recognized, and they receive authority from a sanctioned organization,  which is generally dedicated to a specific deity. Magic, on the other hand, is outside of strict sociopolitical boundaries. Teachers  of magic have to be sought out in secret, and their authority lies in  their ability or knowledge. . . . Religion tends to ask, appeal to, and  maybe coerce the divine; sacrifices, obligations, prayers, and worship  all contribute to the practitioner’s appeal for a deity’s actions; religion  makes petitions to God. Magic typically tries to command, control, or  manipulate the supernatural by esoteric knowledge, imprecations, or  special communication with the deity.

It is clear that the Lord did not approve of any man performing magic,  for magic was the “abomination” of other “nations” (Deut 18:9). A way of  proving whether a particular individual had performed a miracle or  magic was by showing under what authority he acted. If an individual  produced great miracles using another name besides the name of the God  of Israel, he was considered a magician and would therefore be sentenced  to death.  One must
act under proper authority when performing miracles. We see an example  of this in the Gospel of Mark. After Jesus had performed healings and  miracles he was anxiously asked, “By what authority do you do these  things?” (Mark 11:28). His critics wanted to be sure that works of evil  and magic were not being performed in their land, especially near the  temple.

Now that we have differentiated between magic and miracle, the question  remains, was the Urim and Thummim used in connection with God or magic? The Urim and Thummim was kept in the possession of the high priest. It  was used for the general purpose of understanding the will of God and  for foreseeing the future. Textual evidence shows that not only did the  Lord approve of the Urim and Thummim but he also commanded the high  priest concerning how to use it (see Exod 28, Num 27:21).  When the Lord  condemned divination, he was referring to the practice of divining in a  name of a god other than his own. It was the “foreign” work of magic  that the Lord did not approve of.

The Urim and Thummim and God’s Law

Laws regarding the Urim and Thummim and  sacred vestments of the high priest. The high priest was instructed to  wear, as sacred holy vestments, “a breastplate, and an ephod, and a  robe, and a broidered coat, a mitre, and a girdle” (Exod 28:4, KJV). The  ephod, which was made of gold, blue, purple, and scarlet material. The  ephod contained two shoulder pieces by which two stones were attached to  each side. The breastplate containing twelve pouches, each holding a  precious stone bearing a name of a tribe, was placed over the ephod.

Not only must the individual, or  individuals, approaching the high priest to be clean, but the high  priest himself must also be clean and possess the Holy Spirit when  inquiring of the Lord through the Urim and Thummim.  

Louis Ginzberg, a noted Jewish scholar who later converted to  Christianity, stated, “Only the high priest who was permeated with the  Holy Spirit . . . might obtain an answer. . . . If the high priest was  worthy, he received an answer to every inquiry, for on these stones.

The Urim and Thummim were used in connection with war. We find, in  Jewish tradition, instances where the high priest would not withdraw  into the tabernacle to receive an answer from the Lord but would stand  before a congregation, most likely in or near the temple courtyard. A  perfect example of this would be prior to the Israelites going into war.  The high priest, clad in the sacred vestments, would stand before the  army and inquire of the Lord
regarding war strategies and even inquire as to whether they would be victorious in battle.

One tradition states that the answer would come to the army by the  “flashing of the two engraved stones on the shoulder piece of the  ephod.”

Josephus Flavius, a Jewish historian, stated that when the high priest  participated in priestly ceremonies or spoke of the revelations given by  YHWH to the people, the stone on the shoulder piece began to shine. He  also said, “By means of the twelve stones [and Urim and Thummim], which  the high-priest wore upon his breast . . . . God foreshadowed victory to  those on the eve of battle. For so brilliant a light flashed out from  them.”  Ancient texts say that not only did the stones flash brightly,  but the face of the high priest shone bright as well. All of Israel  could see divine light emanating from the breastplate worn by the high  priest, which showed them that they were protected by God.

Another tradition states that the answer would come audibly. The Urim and Thummim would act as a device to project sound,  probably similar to our modern-day microphone or speaker. This would  make it possible for all the troops of Israel to hear the instruction  from the Lord, and therefore every person would know exactly what the  battle plans entailed, otherwise confusion may have crept in.  Perhaps  this is the reason Israel was so successful in defeating their enemies,  at least during the days of the tabernacle and the First Temple Period.

In the Targum of Exodus 28:30, Pseudo-Jonathan, we find an interesting  translation which discusses the power of this holy name when uttered:   And you shall put into the breastplate the Urim, which illuminate their  words and make manifest the hidden things of the House of Israel, and  the Thummim which perfect their deeds, for the high priest who seeks  instruction from the Lord through them. Because in them is engraved and  exposed the great and holy Name by which the three hundred and ten  worlds were created. . . . And whoever pronounces this holy Name in the  hour of distress, shall be saved.

If the translation carries the tradition accurately, we may assume that  the reason why the Urim and Thummim were taken into battle by the high  priest was to save Israel in time of distress.

Earlier versions of this approach state that the lighting up of the  stones was not just a visionary experience of the High Priest but a  sight visible to all. This is found in Josephus' description of the Urim  and the Thummim and in the literature of the Qumran community.

As opposed to this view, Ibn Ezra claims that the Urim ve-Thummim were  "made of gold and silver." He also considers them a great mystery, but  it seems that they were twelve objects stored in the breastplate and  removed for the High Priest to use when needed. They apparently  corresponded to astrological symbols.


Many commentaries hold a less traditional view is that the Urim  ve-Thummim were lots. Thus, I Samuel 14:41 has King Saul inquiring of  God and asking Him to show Tamim. In the Septuagint, this is expanded to  read, "If this iniquity was due to my son Jonathan or to me, O Lord,  God of Israel, show Urim, and if You say it was due to Your people  Israel, show Thummim." According to Driver, the Urim ve-Thummim were  "two sacred lots used for the purpose of ascertaining the Divine will on  questions of national importance."

Inquiring of the Lord

The Urim ve-Thummim is explicitly mentioned only seven times in the  Bible, and "inquiring" of them is not referred to in every case. They  are mentioned twice in the context of describing the priestly garments  (Ex. 28:30; Lev. 8:8) and once as part of the blessing for Levi (Deut.  33:8).

Oracles of God

As noted above, in Numbers 27:21 Joshua  is instructed to consult the oracles before going to war. While there is  no record of Joshua making such an inquiry, the Book of Judges states  that after the death of Joshua, the Israelites asked of the Lord, ′Which of us shall be the first to go up and fight against the Canaanites?′ (Judg. 1:1). Here it is hinted that the decision was made by lots, because the tribe of Judah, determined to be the first, urged Simeon,

'Come with me into my lot' [be-gorali] (Judg. 1:3), although the  plain meaning is that this refers to the allotment of territory (Josh.  18:10).

The Book of Samuel records "inquiring of the Lord" a number of times,  but only once does this explicitly involve the Urim and the Thummim.  After the Philistines mustered their troops for war, Saul noted the  might of the enemy and was struck with fear:

But when Saul inquired of the Lord, the Lord did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by prophets (I Sam. 28:6).

The last actual case of "inquiring of the Lord" is related in II Samuel  5:23-24. There, David seeks guidance about defeating the Philistines,  follows the advice he receives, and gains a decisive victory, reducing  their power from that time onward. In this instance, it is not clear if  the Urim ve-Thummim were consulted, but this is seeming probable.


The Urim and Thummim were an object given  to the Israelites by God to be used by the high priest for revelatory  purposes as well as protection. It was not used in connection with magic  and divination but was used by the high priest and the prophets on  God’s terms.

As we draw nigh into the depths of Tribulation what nuggets can the  Christian draw encouragement?  What occurred in the Torah-Old Testament  is a pattern for the New Testament.

  • Our End Time robes will be clothing during the times of trial and afterward.
  • Although  the Urim and Thummim are no longer upon the earth, as a nation of  priests we can expect God’s Will and provision to shine or illuminate  our path. His Light may assemble just moments before we are in need.
  • God the Father will “cut” His words for clear-cut decisions
  • God's Word will be wondrous to us!
  • Remember that the breastplate is not only His righteousness, but is called "the breastplate of decision.” We will have many decisions to lift up to God in the days to come.
  • The Holy Spirit will guide you in these times and will always provide you with the "Give a perfect answer."
  • There will be so much confusion and darkness soon that the Lord designed a simple "yes" or "no" answers.  You will have the choice to be cured or be made whole in these times.
  • Manifest in your actions the Word of Life, the "declaration/revelation and truth," and "teaching and truth."
  • Be ready to listen. God will project His Voice to us through sound (frequency).
  • Each  day humbly bows to our Savior and inquire to the Father, our Savior,  and Holy Spirit what our actions, thoughts, the direction should be for  each moment.
  • God  the Father is the oracle of life. Soon the Anti-Christ will be on the  scene, and he is a persuasive orator.  Be not deceived.
  • Just as in the Book of Esther these are the days that the world will cast lots for our annihilation.

As you receive these Words praise God, for His provision is the handiwork of heaven!




Celeste Solum is a broadcaster, author, former government, organic farmer and is trained in nursing and environmental medicine.  Celeste chronicles the space and earth conditions that trigger the rise and fall of modern & ancient civilizations, calendars, and volatile economies. Cycles are converging, all pointing to a cataclysmic period between 2020 to 2050 in what many scientists believe is an Extinction Level Event.   

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