The Berean Expositor
Volume 12 - Page 88 of 160
Index | Zoom
In Rev. 2: 12-16 Christ says:--
"These things saith He which hath the sharp sword with two edges . . . . . Repent; or
else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of My
The words spoken to each of the seven churches are searching indeed. Their works
are known, the One Who speaks is a Judge of the thoughts and intents of the heart. His
purpose too is to lead them on to "perfection", or as the Revelation words it to
"overcome". So in Heb. 4: the searching statements of verses 12 and 13 are addressed
to those who are being urged to endure to the end.
Some commentators say that the reference in Heb. 4: 12 is exclusively to the written
Word, while others maintain that it can only refer to the living Word. It is evident that
somewhere before verse 12 the personal element is introduced. The simplest view seems
to be that which is expressed in the figure of Rev. 1: 16, "And out of His mouth went a
sharp two-edged sword", and Rev. 19: 13, "His name is called The Word of God". The
apostle, in Heb. 4: 12, 13, speaks of Christ together with the Word using it for His
people's good. There is possibly a reference also to that specific passage of the Word
which underlies the apostle's argument, viz., Psa. 95:, which he referred to as the
words of the Holy Ghost. That Psalm is still "living and energetic". The Lord can still
use it to reveal the vital difference between "soul and spirit". This is a distinction that is
not kept clear in the minds of many of the Lord's people.
Much that enters into Church life, witness and worship, if viewed in the pure light of
the Word, would prove to be of the soul rather than the spirit. While body, soul and spirit
compose the complete man, the highest service and the only acceptable worship is that of
the spirit. Philippians, the epistle of the Prize, shews that discernment is necessary:--
"And this I pray that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in
all discernment; that ye may try the things that differ; that ye may be sincere and without
offence till the day of Christ" (1: 9, 10).
II Timothy, the epistle of the Crown, also urges discernment:--
"Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be
ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth" (2: 15).
Hebrews, the epistle of the Perfecting, also reveals the need for discernment. Soul and
spirit must be kept distinct.
The last words of verse 13 read in the A.V. "with Whom we have to do". In
Heb. 13: 17 the word rendered "do" (logos) in 4: 13 is translated "account", and this is
its meaning in Heb. 4:: "To Whom we must give an account". The atmosphere is that
of the Judgment Seat of Christ, and verses 12 & 13 leave the mind impressed with the
"terror of the Lord". This is but one side of truth however. There is another, which
equally impresses us with infinite sympathy, tender care, wondrous grace, and bids us to
come "boldly". That other phase is expressed in Heb. 4: 14-16:--