The Powerful Word

The writer of Hebrews exhorts us to be diligent to enter the rest that awaits all who believe (4:3) in Jesus (4:11). Though we enjoy the blessings of that rest now we will enter into the fullness of it at Christ’s return or at our death. We must be diligent to enter it which is another way of saying that we must hold fast our confidence or faith in Christ steadfast to the end (see 3:14). The author links our ability to endure in faith to the end with the ministry of the Word of God (4:12-13).
The word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword. The word of God is alive and we must let it dwell in us through reading it, meditating on it and memorizing it. It is power or effective. God has promised, “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:11). One of the things God pleases to accomplish through His word is to keep us from sin and keep us on the path that leads to the rest He has promised all who believe. In the Psalm which has as its chief subject the Word of God we read, “Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You” (Psalm 119:11)! and “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). The word of God is not only living and powerful, it is sharper than any two-edged sword! As we encounter it through reading or listening to a sermon it can penetrate deeply into our inner man revealing the very thoughts and intents of our hearts. In order to endure, we need the sharp Word of God to lay bare those sinful thoughts and intentions that may hinder us from progressing toward the rest that awaits us. As we open the Word or come to hear the Word our prayer should be like that offered by the psalmist, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; 24 And see if there is any wicked way in me and lead me in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24).