THE POWER OF SCRIPTURE
“…’the Book’…is a fountain for spiritual thirst, food for the soul, a revelation of God, a living power and a two-edged sword” John Piper (ref#220, p292).
FATHER, the more familiar I become with Your Bible the more I approach it with respect and fear. One read through cements the fact that it is indeed a supernatural book. Ordinary books inform or entertain; the Bible changes my very nature. UTMOST LORD, I thank You for providing the SPIRIT who guides me as I read.
I can easily fall back into reading with the mind of my flesh, using my natural “sense and reason without the Holy Spirit…” (Rom 8:6 AMP). But by reading this way I’m only looking for information to help me. Without the SPIRIT to help, Your Word is external. It does not change me inside. It only gives me advice to act independently of You.
“…the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (Heb 4:12 ESV).
“…the ‘word’ is pictured as God’s personal utterance, living, active, sharp, piercing, and discerning…with eyesthat expose….The Word of God then acts as God himself, so that one’s innermost thoughts and intentions are exposed. This happens constantly in Christians’ lives” ESV Study Bible (ref#125, p2367, [Heb 4:12-13]).
If the ESV translation is hard to understand, try the Message: “God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God’s Word. We can’t get away from it—no matter what” (Heb 4:12-13 MSG).
I praise You, LORD, that Your Word “is a sifter…of the reflections and conceptions of the heart” Kenneth S. Wuest (ref#37, p519, [Heb 4:12]). Its energy seeks to get into and stay with me. It has the ability to stir me and work in me to a degree that I can’t get away from it. Dietrich Bonhoeffer (ref#28, p83)
“We are being drawn more and more under the transforming influence of Scripture, or we are being progressively drawn into the web of an ungodly society around us” Jerry Bridges (ref#192, p171).