When asked what the Bible represents, most Christians will say a sword. This is understandable because in Ephesians 5 the Apostle Paul tells us that the word of God is our sword in the armor of God. It is this sword that we use to fight Satan with, as illustrated by Jesus when he was tempted. The problem is that there is a complete other side to the purpose of the Word of God. In Hebrews 4 the writer talks about the word of God being able to divide the soul and the spirit. To better understand this we must look a little deeper at both the soul and the spirit.
Most people cannot explain the difference between the soul and the spirit. In fact, there are countless books written by scholars that have tried to separate this two. The problem I find people making is that they make it too complicated. This is a subject that Moses’ Tabernacle can help us with.
If we look at the tabernacle we see three main parts; The Outer Courts, The Inner Courts, and The Holy of Holies. Each section had its own purpose. The Outer Court was for the people of Israel, the Inner Court was for the Priest and the Holy of Holies for the High Priest. It was in the Holy of Holies where the presence of God rested.
In 1 Corinthians Chapter 3 Paul reveals to us that we are now the Tabernacle of God. And in 1 Thessalonians 5 Paul tells us we have three parts; a body, a soul, and a spirit. We can now draw the parallels between Moses’ Tabernacle and us. Our bodies are the Outer Courts; this is how we interact with the world around us. Our souls are the Inner Courts; this is where our thoughts take place. Our spirits are the Holy of Holies; this is where our true being is. So a basic understanding of the difference between the soul and spirit is that the soul has to do with thought, or your mind, and the spirit has to do with your character, or your true being. Your mind makes your decisions, but it is your character that tells your mind how to process the information.
So in Hebrews 4 the writer is telling us that knowing the word of God will build our character and cause us to think more about our decisions and how those decisions should represent the God we say we serve. With this understanding, as Christians, we can now use the Word of God not only as a sword to fight the devil, but also as a surgical tool to do “heart” surgery on the lost.
We can teach them that having a relationship with God is more than just head knowledge it is having a heart after God. However, to do this we must be skilled in the Word. A heart surgeon must know how to use their instruments and also know precisely where to make each cut. As Spiritual Surgeons we must know how to use our instrument (the Word of God) and know where to cut on each person. Through our understanding and use of the Word of God we have the power to heal and the power to kill.
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