Summary: These are four points describing the word of God found in Hebrews 4:12 - The Word of God is Alive, Active, Sharp and Discerning.
Essential Equipment: The Word of God
Introduction: Ill. A traveler was preparing for a long trip. A friend asked if he was all packed and he said, “Yup, just about. I've got my map, a lamp, a library of 66 books, a mirror, a microscope, a volume of fine poetry, a package of old letters, a song book, a hammer, and a sword.” The friend said “you can't get all of that in one suitcase.” “Sure I can,” the traveler replied. “It doesn't take much room” Then he placed his Bible in the suitcase and closed the lid. (Sermon Central ill.)
The Word of God is essential equipment for our lives. It is like the Swiss army knife that has many tools and can do many things!
This week I emailed a middle school out in California to inquire about an article I read that detailed how a man pulled his child out of their school because they were teaching Islam to his son. I honestly didn't expect to hear anything back but to my surprise they offered a nice, thorough, and well-articulated response. And I admit I wasn't sure what to do, so I did what I always do when I'm not sure what to do, I prayed and asked God what to do. And the one thing that came to me is that God's word is greater than mine and I should use it. So I prayerfully sent the superintendent, John 14:6 and while I haven't heard back from him, I believe that God's Word will find it's mark. If we try to fight fire with fire everyone gets burned. If we try to match flesh with flesh or talking points with talking points or match logic with logic, the truth is, we might be outwitted. But when we use the Word of God, It brings this spiritual war onto a whole new battlefield; God's home turf, where He never loses.
A couple of weeks ago I alluded to the scripture that we will draw our attention to this morning. It is found in Hebrews 4:12 - “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow, it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
Transition: This scripture describes the Word of God in four ways.
The Word of God is Alive.
“For the word of God is living”
Matthew Henry said “Saint's die, Sinners die; but the word of God lives.” Like our Savior, who is alive, so is His word! His word brings life. If you have a King James Bible it reads “For the Word of God is quick,” The word 'quick' is an old English word for living. The idiom 'The quick and the dead' comes from 1 Peter4:5 & part of the apostles creed: “From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead” obviously, that isn't referring to judging those who are speedy or fast but those who are living and those who are dead. 'Quick' means alive and if you allow the word to touch your soul, it will not just bring you life, it will bring you everlasting life. Vibrant life! Joyful life! It brings a peaceful life! Which may sound strange considering Jesus said “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.” He brings peace to believers. He came to bring us peace with God, peace with our selves, and peace with our brothers, but He brings a sword to unbelievers. To a fallen and sinful world that is at conflict with our faith, He brings a sword!
The Word of God is alive and it brings life! Like Elisha's bones when it touches a dead man it brings him back to life. The Word of God may be thousands of years old and yet no matter how flippant and apathetic we are to it, it can still touch a dead man and bring him back to life! I am proof of it! You are looking at a man who was dead to hope, dead to peace, dead in the world, and dead in sin. And it was the Word of God that touched me and brought me back to life!
Transition: If you ever feel dead, read the word because it is Alive! And not only is it alive the verse joins two adjectives together: 'quick and powerful' (KJV) or 'living and active' (NIV)
The Word of God is Active
The King James says 'powerful'. But in the Greek it means 'energetic', but it should be understood as 'energetically effective' or 'powerfully effective'. You may have two employees, one who works hard but the other gets results. He is effective at doing what he gets paid to do. He gets results. The word of God is powerfully effective in doing what it is suppose to do. It gets results. It never goes out and comes back void. It has the power to pull down strongholds, raise the dead, cast out demons, make the deaf hear, the blind see, and the lame walk.