Hebrews 4:11–16 (NKJV)
After lifting up the poor example of the faithless Israelites who died in the wilderness—never reaching the rest (land) promised to Abraham and all their ancestors—, the writer to the Hebrews changes course to a degree, with a parting advisory to fight hard to enter that rest of God. He then segues into a discussion of the life and power of the Word of God.
11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience. 12 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. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.Hebrews 4:11-13
It is imperative that the believer be diligent, always on the ready, aware and awake, so that he or she does not falter in their faith in God or their relationship with Him. One should not repeat history when there is an option to avoid such a negative practice as the Israelites did in the wilderness. The oft-quoted passage that follows this advice describes the living and powerful word of God. It is described as being sharper than any two-edged sword, perhaps showing the strength of the sword in that it can cut in any direction and cut through any obstacle. That is further established as the Word is described as being able to separate soul and spirit, and even joints and marrow. The word of God pierces and cuts, able to discern the thoughts and even the intents of the heart. Nothing is hidden from the Word of God—written (Bible) or living (Jesus Christ). The extreme to which the word of God can penetrate is even further described by saying that all things are “naked and open to the eyes of Him” to whom all men must give an account. The Word of God is unstoppable, piercing, like a laser of cutting lights, opening up any hidden place and destroying the wicked things within mankind. With that in mind, it is imperative that the Christian man or woman be a student of the Word, reading it, studying it, praying it, knowing it, even memorizing some of it. With the Word in you, you will walk in faith and relationship with Christ in a way that is pleasing to Him and that preserves your soul!
14 Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.Hebrews 4:14-16
This passage describes the second form of the Word that we spoke of earlier, the living Word, Jesus Christ, described here as the great High Priest. We do have a great High Priest, ascended back to heaven, making intercession for Christians everywhere. He is the Son of God, and is the confidence in which we can hold fast our confession of faith. With Christ as our High Priest, we are confident that He understands our struggle intellectually and experientially. He can sympathize with our weaknesses, as He was tempted as we are every day, in all ways, and He came through every temptation without sin. Therefore, we can come into the throne of grace, not arrogantly or pridefully (for we cannot give an order to God), but nevertheless boldly. We can boldly enter into the throne of grace. We can audaciously ask the Creator and Sustainer of the world to hear our petition. Abraham did. Moses did. David did. Paul did. So can you. So can I. The powerful word of God says so, therefore it is true.
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