Summary: For many the Bible is just an old book to collect dust on a shelf, press flowers with, or in which to collect obituaries and wedding clippings – but the Bible is so much more – It’s Alive!
Introduction: A collector of old books ran into an acquaintance of his who had just thrown away an old Bible that had been in his family for generations. He happened to mention that Guten-somebody had printed it. "What? Not GUTENBERG?" gasped the book collector. "Why, yes, I THINK that was the name," said his acquaintance. "You IDIOT!" said the book collector. "You’ve thrown away one of the first books ever printed! Last year they auctioned one for one-and-a-half million dollars!" "Nah!" said his acquaintance. "THIS one wouldn’t have been worth a cent! Some fool by the name of Martin Luther had scribbled all over the margins!" For many the Bible is just an old book to collect dust on a shelf, press flowers with, or collect obituaries and wedding clippings in – but the Bible is so much more – It’s Alive!
I. The Word of God is “living”
A. Weymouth - “For God’s Message is full of life…”
B. Martin Luther, hundreds of years ago, said, "The Bible is alive, it speaks to me; it has feet, it runs after me; it has hands, it lays hold on me." - copied
C. The Bible is a living book through which the living God speaks to persons today.
D. 1 Peter 1:22-23 “Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever.”
E. The Bible is alive. The Bible is not just a story about things that happened to the nation of Israel thousands of years ago. It is not a collection of myths and legends. It is not outdated, passé, archaic, or irrelevant. The Bible is living and active and has important relevance for us today.
F. The Bible is inexhaustible and inextinguishable. The Bible is not a static book.
G. Hebrews 4;12 – “For the Word of God is quick (zao - to live, breathe, be among the living, not lifeless, not dead) and powerful (energes - active)
H. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
I. Christians need no other reason to be avid readers of the Word of God. Realizing that Scripture is "God-breathed" is motivation enough. Immediately, we see a connection between the living Word and the written Word. Just as Jesus Christ the living Word is an ever present and dynamic reality, the written Word is equally alive and active through the mind of the Holy Spirit. Every time we open the Scriptures, we should expect a personal encounter with the God-breathed Spirit of the living Word. This is reading at its very best. When the mind and spirit of a biblical author interact in vibrant dialogue with the mind and spirit of a reader, the highest purpose of the inspired Word is fulfilled. We should soar every time we read the Word of God. – David L. McKenna, How to Read a Christian Book, 2001, p. 18- 19
II. The Word of God is “surgically sharp”
A. The Bible is described in verse 12 as being sharper than any two-edged sword made and honed by man.
B. The word for sharper (tomoteros) is a comparative word indicating the ability to cut, more comprehensively or decisively with a single stroke than with repeated blows or hacking.
C. God’s Word strikes with surprising precision. It has the ability to deliver the right message in just the right place at the right time through the Holy Spirit’s empowerment.
D. Have you ever wondered how a sermon or a Sunday school lesson can be so fitted to what you are experiencing? You may even think that someone has talked to them and given them some inside information about you. The truth is that it isn’t the teacher or the preacher. It’s the Word of God empowered by the Spirit of God, delivering the right message at the right place at right the time.
E. According to Matthew Henry, the Bible is like a double-edged sword because, "it subdues and mortifies evil desires and blasphemous thoughts as they rise within; and answers unbelief and error as they assault from without. A single text, well understood, and rightly applied, at once destroys a temptation or an objection, and subdues the most formidable adversary."
F. Ephesians 6:16 “above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.”
G. Romans 10:17 “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”