The Penetrating Word of God
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. (Heb 4:12)
Does God’s word ever cause you discomfort? When you read the Bible does what you read make you uneasy? Do you find when you listen to sermons, that the Scripture seems aimed directly at you? You are experiencing the reality that the word of God is alive and can read your thoughts and judge your intentions.
When God’s word speaks to you, it is always for a purpose. God knows your heart and knows what you need to do to bring your life into conformity to Christ. If you have a problem with sinful talk, the word that comes to you will address the tongue. If you are struggling to forgive, God’s word will confront you with His standard for forgiveness. If pride has a stronghold in your life, God’s word will speak to you about humility. Whatever sin needs addressing, you will find you are confronted by God’s word on the matter.
One way you can escape the discomfort of conviction is to avoid hearing God speak to you. You may neglect reading your Bible and stay away from places where it is taught. You may avoid those whom you know will uphold the truths of Scripture. The best response, however, is to pray as the psalmist did: “Search me, O God, and know my heart” (Ps. 139:23). Regularly allow the word of God to wash over you and find any sin or impurity (Eph. 5:26). Always make the connection between your life and what God is saying to you through His word. Make a habit of taking every word from God seriously, knowing that it is able to judge your heart and mind.