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Wednesday, March 24 2021

Contributor: Isekhua Evborokhai

INTRODUCTION
In last week’s study titled “Promised Rest for God’s People”, we looked at some hindrances to entering into God's rest and why we must enter God’s rest. We also learnt that the rest is based on God’s word. (Isaiah 26:3-4 & Psalm 37:23) and that this promised rest is a “live promise”. Today we will be considering just two verses of chapter 4; verses 12 and 13.

TEXT: “For the word of God is living and active and full of power [making it operative, energizing, and effective]. It is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating as far as the division of the soul and spirit [the completeness of a person], and of both joints and marrow [the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and judging the very thoughts and intentions of the heart. “And not a creature exists that is concealed from His sight, but all things are open and exposed, and revealed to the eyes of Him with whom we have to give account.” Heb. 4:12–13 (AMP) Emphasis mine

In these two verses, we will consider five things the writer asserted about the Word of God.

1. God’s Word Is Living
Describing the Word of God as “living” implies that the Word of God is alive and current; and exists as a dynamic force with which the world must reckon. God’s revelation still speaks to our current needs and situation. That is why the writer often quotes Scripture by saying, “He says” (Heb. 1:5; 2:11-12), or “The Holy Spirit says” (3:7). Even though the Bible was written many centuries ago, the Spirit of God still speaks directly to us through it. It is never out of date or irrelevant. It speaks to the very issues that we face in our modern world. In addition, God is the living God (3:12), and His Word cannot be separated from Him, that makes His Word a living Word; that can never be exterminated. As Isaiah 40:8 proclaims, “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.

Finally, as the Author of life, His living Word imparts life in three ways.

a) God’s Word Imparts New Life to Dead Sinners.
Eph. 2:1, tells us that we were all dead in trespasses and sins, and alienated from God. “And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins. Just as a corpse cannot revive itself to life, neither can an unbeliever revive his own spirit into new life. But God is pleased to use His Word to impart new life to dead sinners. James 1:18 states, “In the exercise of His will [not our will] He brought us forth by the word of truth …” 1 Peter 1:23 says, “for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.”

b) God’s Word Imparts Life onto the Dead.
The Word of God also imparts life to dead people. As we see in the case of Lazarus (John 11:43-44). Jairus’ daughter (Mark 5:41), the Widow's Son (Luke 7:14), and Dorcas (Acts 9:40)

c) God’s Word Imparts Renewed Life to His Saints.
Jesus said in John 6:63b “The words I have spoken to you–they are full of the Spirit and life.” God uses His Word to renew and revive us. David wrote, “The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul” (Ps. 19:7). The entire 176 verses of Psalm 119 talks of the benefits of God’s Word. Repeatedly the psalmist cries out, “My soul cleaves to the dust; revive me according to Your word” (119:25). “This is my comfort in my affliction, that Your word has revived me” (119:50).

2. God’s Word Is Active
The English word “energy” takes its root from the Greek word translated as “active.” That God’s Word is active implies that it is operative, energizing, and effective. It accomplishes what God intends for it to do. Isaiah 55:10-11 states, “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there without watering the earth and making it bear and sprout, and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so will My word be which goes forth out of My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” Emphasis mine

The same Word that at creation set the elements of the universe to their appointed tasks and still governs the universe toward God’s desired intentions (Heb. 1:2–3), has the ability to effect change in people. It is not static and passive but dynamic, interactive, and transforming as it interfaces with the people of God.

3. God’s Word Is Full of Power.
Jeremiah 23:29 says:  “Is not my word like fire,” declares the Lord, “and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?"
God’s Word is full of power! It was by His Words he created the universe; speaking its entirety into existence. (Genesis 1:3). Romans 4:17 says God gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did. God’s Word possess the following:
Power of Salvation to Save (Rom. 1:16), Power to Refute (2 Timothy 3:16), Power to Reproduce (Luke 8:11), Power to Re-Direct (1 Peter 2:25), Power to Reward (Hebrews 11:6) Power to Set Free (John 8:31-32), Power to Convict of Sin. (Acts 2:37), Power to Accomplish Purpose and Achieve Results (Isaiah 55:11), Power to Be Kept Pure (Psalm 119:9) and many more.

4. God’s Word Is Sharp and Penetrating.
The writer describes God’s Word as being sharper than any two-edged sword. A two-edged sword is one whose blade is sharpened on both sides. That means it is able to penetrate and cut in any direction; and therefore applicable in all situations; for blessing or curses (Psa. 1 & Deut.28), for edification, inspiration, instruction, or chastisement (2 Timothy 3:16), God’s Word is sharp and it cuts deeply, to the very core of our being. It can separate truth from error, eliminating the blurriness introduced by the devil; when he twists the truth and tries to blur the line between the truth and his lies (Matthew 4:1-11).
And finally, it reveals to us who we truly are by penetrating to the deepest parts of us; separating joints and marrow, soul and spirit. Unless a person’s conscience is hardened beyond remedy, there is no way they will read God’s Word or hear it preached faithfully without getting cut in the conscience. Acts 2:37 says: “When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”

5. God’s Word Judges the Thoughts and Intentions of the Heart.
Although in verse 13, the writer refers God Himself, and not the Word; as the One who sees everything; we cannot hide from Him (Adam and Eve tried to hide from God after they sinned, but they could not do it, and neither can we). And finally, that we have to give account to Him. Jeremiah 17: 9-10 asks rhetorically and provides the answer: “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.”

Having said that, the Word of God also judges the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Jesus in John 12:48 says: “Those who reject me by not accepting what I say have a judge appointed for them. The words that I have spoken will judge them on the last day.” (GW) Emphasis mine

CONCLUSION
Psalms 8-19:7 NLT says: “The instructions of the Lord are perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are clear, giving insight for living.

The Word of God is not only potent when spoken by Him, but also in our mouths. In Isaiah 59:21, God says He has put His Words in our mouths. Jesus asks us to “speak to the mountain” (Mark 11:23), Peter healed a lame man by speaking the Word (Acts 3: 6), Job 22:28 says when we decree a thing, it will be established.

Having realized the awesomeness of God’s Word, it is very important that we do not become hearers alone (James 1:22). Let’s put God’s Word to practice in our lives. Here is what Jesus said in Matt. 7:24-27 (MSG)

“24-25 “These words I speak to you are not incidental additions to your life, homeowner improvements to your standard of living. They are foundational words, words to build a life on. If you work these words into your life, you are like a smart carpenter who built his house on solid rock. Rain poured down, the river flooded, a tornado hit—but nothing moved that house. It was fixed to the rock. 26-27 “But if you just use my words in Bible studies and don’t work them into your life, you are like a stupid carpenter who built his house on the sandy beach. When a storm rolled in and the waves came up, it collapsed like a house of cards.”

How do we work the word of God into our lives?
James 1:22-25 says: “But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.” Joshua 1:8 also says: “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall read [and meditate on] it day and night, so that you may be careful to do [everything] in accordance with all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will be successful.” (AMP)

So we work God’s Word into our lives by (i) speaking, confessing and professing it (looking into the Word); (ii) reading and meditating on it day and night (continuing in it), and (iii) doing everything that is written in it (being a doer of the work).
It is not one out of three, but all of the three.

Parts of this study was culled from:
https://bible.org/seriespage/lesson-13-god%E2%80%99s-powerful-word-hebrews-412-13

Posted by: Isekhua Evborokhai AT 03:20 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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