As I near the beginning of my fourth year of TheShepherdsPen, I have added a new category; it is that of Machaira. In the Greek, a Machaira is a sword, a dagger-like sword used in close-quarters combat. It is referenced in the Book of Ephesians, in the passage of spiritual warfare: “… the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17).
The intent of this category on TheShepherdsPen is to focus on particular key verses, for doctrinal understanding, and for those who desire, memorization… yes! Memorization.
Our goal is not only to read Scripture, but to understand it and, as David writes, that we would write it upon the tablets of our hearts:
“Your word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against You” (Psalm 119:11).
The first verse, then (ta da) is appropriately Hebrews 4:12:
“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
As Evangelicals, we hold the written word of God as divinely inspired for our benefit. As this verse instructs us, the words are not mere print upon the page, but “living, active, and sharp,” able to perform great surgery upon the broken soul of man. The Bible can navigate deep into the spirit of man and clear away, or excise any dross which does not reveal Christ in us.
It is going to hurt a bit, but it is for the greater good in our walk with Christ. And so, we place ourselves under the divine scalpel, that the Lord may conform us to the image of Christ.