Are You Legit?

“Are You Legit?”

Hebrews 4:12-13 New King James Version (NKJV)

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.

The above Scripture speaks directly to the disobedient generation of Israelites, connecting verse 11 “Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience” v. 12-13 are a warning demonstration of the necessity for compliance with the exhortation uttered Hebrews 4:11. Many have used this as a stand alone verse speaking to the power of the Word of God, but this is speaking directly to the power of God’s Word to CORRECT and bring forth legitimate sons and daughters of the Lord, those who have all the rights and authority of sonship, unlike that disobedient and rebellious generation.

The Scripture says that we then are to be “diligent to enter that rest”. How? Not by the disobedience of that rebellious generation, but by obeying the Word of God. His Word is a double-edged sword, sharp and precise as a surgeon’s scalpel- cutting away that which offends God and has potential to do us harm.

For the word of God – It is NOT a ref to Jesus as the “Logos”. “The Word made flesh”, but rather the translation is “the Word that God speaks.”  The “Word of God” is “what God speaks” – whether it be a promise or a threatening; whether it be Law or gospel; whether it be a simple declaration or a statement of a doctrine. The idea here is, that what “God has said” is suited to detect hypocrisy and to lay open the true nature of the feelings of the soul, so that there can be no escape for the guilty. His “truth” is adapted to bring out our real feelings, and to show man exactly what he is. I LOVE His Word- it is the power to transform

James 1:22 New King James Version (NKJV)

22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 

Truth always has this power – whether preached, or read, or communicated by conversation, or impressed upon the memory and conscience by the Holy Spirit. There can be no escape from the penetrating, searching application of the Word of God. The truth has power to show what man is, and is like a penetrating sword that lays open the whole man

We cannot escape the notice of God; all insincerity, unbelief, hypocrisy, will be detected by Him; and since our hearts are perfectly open before him, we should be sincere and should not attempt to deceive Him. The truth of God is all-penetrating and searching, and the real thoughts and intents of the heart will be brought to light, and if there is insincerity and self-deception there can be no hope of escape.

The Word is quick – Greek ζῶν zōn – “living.” It is not dead and powerless. It has a “living” power, and is energetic and active. It is “adapted” to produce this very effect.

And powerful – Mighty. Its power is seen in awakening the conscience; alarming the fears; laying bare the secret feelings of the heart, and causing the sinner to tremble with the apprehension of the coming judgment.

Sharper than any two-edged sword – Literally, “two-mouthed” sword – The word “mouth” was given to the sword because it seemed to “devour” all before it. It consumed or destroyed as a lion consumes its prey. The comparison of the Word of God to a sword, is designed to show its power of penetrating the heart;

Revelation 1:16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.

The idea is that of piercing, or penetrating; and that the Word of God reaches the “heart” – the very center of action, and lays open the motives and feelings of the man. This is the power of the Word – the power of destroying the hopes of sin; cutting down under conviction; and prostrating as if a sword had pierced the heart.

but all things are naked and opened — expressions used with an allusion to the state in which the sacrificial burnt-offerings were laid on the altar. They were stripped of their skins, their breasts were ripped open, their bowels were taken out, and their back-bone was cleft from the neck downward, as the latter word signifies. So that everything, both within and without the sacrificial animal, was exposed to open view, particularly to the eye of the priest, in order to a thorough examination:

Leviticus 1:5-6 New King James Version (NKJV)

He shall kill the bull before the Lord; and the priests, Aaron’s sons, shall bring the blood and sprinkle the blood all around on the altar that is by the door of the tabernacle of meeting. And he shall skin the burnt offering and cut it into its pieces. And being found without blemish, they were laid in their natural order on the altar, and burned. The meaning is, that there is no infidelity, nor hypocrisy, nor worldly- mindedness; neither covetousness, nor pride, nor ambition, nor any sinful disposition, however secretly it may lurk in the mind, can be concealed from our Judge.

There is a way to determine an immature Christian and a rebellious one. They both can act the same and have the same characteristics, but an immature Christian will receive correction from the Word of God, a rebellious one will not. There is a high cost for disobedience- just ask the Exodus generation

1 Peter 1:14-15 NKJV as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,

The Word of God discovers our real condition. How do you receive God’s Word? How do you receive preaching that convicts? How do you receive something you do not like or want to hear? You can run and hide, jump churches and go somewhere else where the people do not know your rebellion or you receive the word that God is speaking to you.

Hebrews 5:8-9 New King James Version (NKJV)

though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him”

Jesus is the obedient One: true faith and oneness with Him will be evidence by the fruit of obedience in us

Hebrews 12:8 New King James Version (NKJV)

But if you are without chastening (discipline, correction), of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons

Correction + Obedience=Sonship. How you respond to God’s Word displays whether or not you are an illegitimate child of God or you are a son of God. This is why parents, you need to teach your children to obey and receive correction. God will use whatever means necessary to correct us- it is often Scripture, but it can come through the preaching, teaching, pastor, another person, etc. and how you respond reveals whether or not you are a son. Correction is godly and by its sheer nature, it implies that you are loved and cared for by the Father. He loves me enough to correct me. Our church always has a plan of restoration when someone in the body sins- but more often than not, that person does not want to receive the correction and often the embarrassment that can accompany correction. I have had to apologize more times than I can count for a rude or sinful behavior and quite frankly, it was embarrassing. But the sting of embarrassment has a way of bringing forth a refined vessel.

Matthew 4:4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’ ”

Isaiah 40:8 The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for [a]instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Scripture was not just given to record His promises and faithfulness; but to reprove, correct and instruct His children. Sheep are prone to wander- we need the rod and reproof. Now, some of us need it more than others. Some of us learn the first time and find it easy to obey; while some are certainly more hard-headed. (immature Christians v. rebellious Christians)

Romans 8:12-14 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors—not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

We see then that being led by the Holy Spirit includes obedience to His Word. These two things are inseparable. We also see that continuing to live a life of sin is not compatible with being a son of God. A legitimate son obeys God’s Word, is led by the Spirit and receives correction; an illegitimate one does not and refuses to receive correction.

The Word reshapes our thinking, attitude and actions. We read Scripture, ponder the Word and compare it with other Scriptures. The Word is our plumbline.

Psalm 138:2 New King James Version (NKJV)

I will worship toward Your holy temple, And praise Your name For Your lovingkindness and Your truth;
For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.

Did God really say?? What this Scripture states is that God has magnified His Word and His faithfulness to His Word, above all His revealed attributes (names- as His names imply His character)

A lukewarm mindset picks and chooses which Scriptures they want to obey. James told us that when we hear and do not obey, we deceive ourselves. We say God is merciful, He is longsuffering, He is quick to forgive and He is! But we put these things ahead of what He says about something and forget that He is faithful to do what He says. SO we disobey His Word and deceive ourselves into believing we are OK. The Bible tells us that in the latter days, deception would be so prevalent, even in the church, that they elect of God could be deceived.

Here are some questions to allow the Word to examine you:

Is God’s Spirit applying this verse to my life and personal situation?

Is there a promise here for me to claim?

Is this passage revealing a particular sin I must strive to avoid?

Is God issuing a command I must obey?

Is my spirit in harmony with what the Holy Spirit is saying?

Is the passage expressing a truth about God, salvation, sin, the world or my personal obedience on which I need to be enlightened by the Holy Spirit?

Let’s apply this to the following Scripture:

Psalm 27:1 New King James Version (NKJV)

27 The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?

Matthew 10:37-38 New King James Version (NKJV)

37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38 And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.

Matthew 19:9 New King James Version (NKJV)

And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for [a]sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.”

God forgives sin—not excuses.

Hebrews 10:25 New King James Version (NKJV)

25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

Proverbs 13:13 New King James Version (NKJV)

13 He who despises the word will be destroyed, But he who fears the commandment will be rewarded.

Hebrews 4:12-13 New King James Version (NKJV)

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.

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