For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 (NASB)
Do you remember gettings “skelfs” as a kid, those small splinter of wood under the skin that hurt. We would run in to mum and she would excise the invader with one of her sewing needles, then you’d scream the house down as she then doused the finger in antiseptic – ouch! But pretty soon you were back playing, the “skelf” forgotten. In this our third visit to this famous verse we find the Word of God doing something similar with our soul, seeking out the “skelfs” in our life.
The Word is “sharper than any two-edged sword,” a sword with cutting edges on both sides. Considerably bigger than your mum’s needle! The sword referred to here could either be a broad sword used by a soldier, or a dirk used in solemn ceremonies such as used by Abraham ( Gen.22:10). The Word/Sword pierces into our innermost parts, “penetrating” (NIV) seeking out foreign invaders. The Word can see all things in our soul and spirit, the first being the foundations of our will/affections. Our spirit is our frame of mind / influence. Salvation in Christ influences our spirit (Rom.8:15).
The Word/Sword can “discern” (KJV) accurately “the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Yet as Adam did we often try to hide from God, which is impossible to do. There is no hiding place from God; He is the World Champion at “hide & seek” every time! “We cannot escape the notice of God; and that since our hearts are perfectly open before Him, we should be sincere and should not attempt to deceive Him” (Albert Barnes Commentary).
Dear reader, rather than fearing the scrutiny of Almighty God our Father by His Word let us seek it. Embrace the Word at every opportunity that it might excise “skelfs” in our life, cleansing us with every Word.