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A Piercing Sword

• Greg Boyd

For disciples of Christ, the Word of God cuts and divides. God sees us for who we really are, and his desire is to mold and shape us into this person. God desires to carve away and remove anything that is sinful in our lives. He wants us to grow and may place new convictions on our hearts in the process. Our job as followers of Jesus is to humble ourselves, repent, and allow God to mold and shape us.

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The Word of God is a sword that pierces and cuts. Jesus is this incarnate Word of God. Simeon concludes his prophetic message to Mary by speaking, “a sword will pierce your own soul too.” Through the sacrifice of Christ’s death on the cross, Jesus is revealing the hearts of all people. Rebellious hearts are exposed and pierced. As well, followers of Jesus experience their own sort of piercing.

“For the word of God is alive 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. 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.” (Hebrews 4:11-13)

For disciples of Christ, the Word of God cuts and divides. The language used in the Bible is of a sword that cuts between soul and spirit, joint and marrow, thoughts and intentions. Our soul is our collection of thoughts and experiences, and our spirit is the essence of our true self, which is defined by God’s Word.

Each of our souls and spirits are often in disagreement. The soul is conditioned by lies, the patterns of this world and the desires of the flesh. However, the essence of who we are – our spirit – is defined by our Creator. It is God’s Word, which penetrates and separates, that brings about a congruity between the spirit and soul.

God sees us for who we really are, and his desire is to mold and shape us into this person. God desires to carve away and remove anything that is sinful in our lives. God wants us to grow and may place new convictions on our hearts in the process. Our job as followers of Jesus is to humble ourselves, repent, and allow God to mold and shape us.

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Topics: Transformation


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Focus Scripture:

  • Luke 2:34-35

    Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too."

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