THE WORD OF GOD IS POWERFUL!
The Word of God is also "powerful." By His Word God created the heavens and the earth, and all that is in them (Heb 11:3). The Psalmist stated the case convincingly. "The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD thunders over the mighty waters. The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is majestic. The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; the LORD breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon. He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, Sirion like a young wild ox. The voice of the LORD strikes with flashes of lightning. The voice of the LORD shakes the desert; the LORD shakes the Desert of Kadesh. The voice of the LORD twists the oaks and strips the forests bare. And in his temple all cry, "Glory!" (Psalm 29:3-9).
The sophist will object, saying "the voice of the Lord" does not equate to the Word of the Lord. But they are not correct! Scripture speaks of the Word of God as the "voice" of the Lord. Search and see (Ex 15:26; Heb 3:7-8,15; 4:7). Those that are submitted to the Word of God are said to be hearing Him that is speaking from heaven (Heb 12:25). The recorded Word of God is referred to as a message the Spirit is speaking to the churches. God's people are bidden to hear what He is saying (Rev 2:7,11,17,29; 3:6,13,22).
The "power" of which we particularly speak, involves moral power. It gives the receiver power to choose the good and refuse the evil, resist the devil and submit to God. The Word of God is "powerful" in that it identifies the key issues, then provides the ability to address them. This is the kind of power ascribed to our Lord in Isaiah's prophecy. "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good" (Isa 7:14-15). In a moral arena, where competitive influences are at work, it is imperative that we possess such power! God's Word brings it to us.
We will also find the Word to be powerful in accomplishing the purpose of God. Through it men are born again (1 Pet 1:23; James 1:18), built up in the most holy faith, and given an inheritance among all those that are sanctified (Acts 20:32).
If you want the church to become powerless, take the Word of God from it. Speak it no longer from the pulpit, and teach it no more in the classroom. Feed the people a diet of social issues, methods and techniques, and entertaining novelties. Tell them what men have said, and make God's Word secondary. It will not be long until they will be dead toward God and alive to sin!
Do you want to deprive your children of spiritual life? Have them play when they come to the house of God. Entertain them, and keep the Word of God from them. That is a sure way to ensure their enslavement to sin! Give them videos, games, and field trips--but do not give them the Word of God. Make them think they are incapable of understanding it. Speak to them as though this is the case. By so doing, you shall ensure their condemnation.
There is no life toward God apart from His Word! It is not fashionable to remind men of this, but the solemn injunction has been spoken; "Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction" (2 Tim 4:2).
Jesus "preached the Word" to the people (Mark 2:2). Following His ascension into heaven, His disciples went everywhere preaching "the Word" (Mark 16:20). In Samaria, synagogues, Perga, and towns throughout Asia, the Word of God was "preached," or proclaimed (Acts 8:25; 10:37; 13:5; 14:25; 15:36). Spiritual life sprang forth everywhere, in spite of Satanic opposition. The Word of God is "powerful!"
Because it is accompanied by the Spirit of God, the Word penetrates the unseen part of man. It uncovers the intentions of the heart, laying them bare before the Lord. It can distinguish between the soul and the spirit, the lower and higher nature of man. The soul is the expressive part of our person. Thoughts and emotions are resident there. They can be under the administration of the Holy Spirit or our adversary, the devil. Here is where hype is addressed--to the soul. The stirring up of this part of our nature is not necessarily bad, but it is generally short-lived. The "spirit" of man is the part that is joined with God's Holy Spirit (Rom 8:16). Here is where service to God is realized (Rom 1:9). Real insight takes place in this part of us--our spirit (1 Cor 2:11).