I promised a good friend that I would not put this off any longer ( shout out to John Bailor!). So, here I go! Back before my stroke, I used to love to read His Word, and used to love to teach it, too. In fact, I wrote many of the bible study material we used at our church. But now, comprehension is a huge challenge for me, and I am ashamed to say I haven’t read it much because it bothers me not to understand it anymore. Lately, however, I have decided to fight back and regain the things I can through practice and perseverance. And I know that many people are intimidated out of reading the bible because they don’t believe they will understand it. So, I hope we can learn together, a verse at a time. I’m definitely not saying I will be right on everything, so if you feel the need to correct me, please do! ( If you don’t, that’s like looking at someone with spinach in their teeth and saying nothing. Trust me, we ALL would want to know!) But PLEASE be gentle with me, because I am just learning.
Hebrews 4: 12, 13, 16
12″ For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
I chose these verses to begin this blog because they have always been some of my favorite scriptures. I like how the bible is described as “living and active”. It immediately reminds me of another verse:
If we believe Jesus died and was raised again and now LIVES in us, and if we understand that Jesus is the Word itself, that is how we can truly believe that the bible has relevance for our lives today, even though the words were written at least 3,000 years ago. It’s living and active because Jesus is living and active in each of us who belong to Him! That is always so cool to me!
That brings us to the next verse! Isn’t this exciting??? Did you shout ‘yes’? Good! Okay. I don’t know if it’s just because I’ve spent alot of time in hospitals lately, but this verse always brings up an image of a doctor, performing surgery. It says it dissects soul and spirit, joints and marrow. You don’t get any deeper than marrow in the human body. And if you have an infection in the marrow, you are in VERY poor health, because if it’s in there, it is most likely many other places inside of you, as well.
If you don’t go to the doctor and have him run detailed tests, you may never know about your illness….until it’s too late. It’s the same way for our spiritual life. I think we sometimes don’t read because it’s difficult for us to comprehend, but I think it is more common for us to avoid the Word because we don’t want to see what it might reveal about us. Many times, when I was in a bad place, I would struggle to get right with Him and try to read His Word again. But the first words I read were always addressing the sin in my life. Over and over. Every time. So now I understand that approaching Him honestly and admitting to being sick is the only way to get healing, and the only way to move closer in my relationship with Him.
Verse 13 is pretty simple, and a little scary, too! it’s basically saying we’re naked. But even more than that, if you continue along the “surgery” train of thought, it’s as if we were cut open. Butterflied, (like the shrimp), if you will. ALL of me is exposed, right down to my bones, and deeper still. He sees and knows it all, and we are ultimately only accountable to Him for every last bit of what he sees in there.
BUT!! Verse 16 is here to save the day! It says if we approach Him, confidently knowing he will forgive and restore us, we will receive mercy (not getting what we deserve) and grace (getting what we don’t deserve)!! This should help alleviate some of our fears to read the bible, because we know if he reveals something to us, he can also remove it and redeem us!
And we will have a clean bill of health!!!
Let’s not run today from the truth God is revealing to us. Instead let’s come clean, and have a little surgery!