Building up believers and the New Testament church

The Word of God

The Living Word

"For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart" (Hebrews 4:12). This statement from the book of Hebrews can help us greatly. The Amplified Bible renders the first phrase: "For the word that God speaks..." This word of God is living, not dead. It has power in the inner man; therefore our focus is immediately lifted to a working of God by the Spirit, for the Spirit is the only one who can work in the inner heart of man in this way.

According to this scripture, the word of God is active--it does something. The whole creation was brought into existence through the word of God and is kept in store for future judgment by the same word (II Peter 3:5-7). This defies the natural reasoning of man, but will we only believe our natural reasoning and let our minds limit us, or will we believe God and let Him lead us into spiritual realms?

Christ Himself is referred to as "The Word" (John 1:14). In the book of Revelation we see Christ sitting on a white horse, moving in judgment, and His name is given as "The Word of God" (Revelation 19:13). In speaking to the church in Pergamos, Jesus says: "I will fight against them with the sword of My mouth" (Revelation 2:16).

We see from just these few passages that the term "the word of God" cannot be interchanged consistently with "the Bible." Further on, we will consider the purpose of the Bible, but we can see at this point that the word of God is something that is alive by the Spirit and connected directly to the person of God and what He is doing at this very moment. "The word of God" always involves a living communication from a living God to meet a specific need.

John tells us,"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1). He goes on to tell us that "the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth" (John 1:14). When God wanted to communicate the fullness of Himself to mankind, He sent Christ. Christ was the full expression of God's word. Surely this should lift our vision higher and focus our attention on a living relationship with a living God.

The word of God is not dead words, inscribed within a monastery and covered with dust. The word of God is a communication of the very person of God right now. It is never separate from God, but communicates the reality of His presence, power and love to meet the need of the moment. It is this word that man shall live by.

Next: The Bible