Hebrews 4:12-13 - For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from His sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
Have you ever had surgery? For most people, it's a scary thing to contemplate -- yielding up your body into the hands of doctors who will cut and extract and mend, all to make you better again. We fear pain. We fear unconsciousness.
And perhaps most of all, we fear the vulnerability that comes with surgery. During that time, our lives are literally in the hands of the doctors. We cannot help ourselves. We are usually unclothed. We cannot even move or wake. We are wholly dependent on their care. And that is scary for us.
But of course, when it's necessary, most of us do agree to go ahead and have surgery. We know that it can make us better -- can help us function the way we ought -- can even save our lives. And so, we say yes. We suffer vulnerability for the sake of the better life to come.
In this passage, the writer of Hebrews describes a similar vulnerability: the one that comes when we realize we are in God's hands and He knows everything about us, even the things we would like to keep hidden. That is a scary feeling! And yet, we know it's a good thing for us to be wholly known to the God who loves us. Because He knows all about us, He also knows where and when to apply the scalpel of His Word, the Bible. Hebrews describes it this way: For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart."
Sharper than a two-edged sword? That's also scary -- unless you are facing surgery. Then a sharp blade is a blessing. It means the surgeon can take out only what needs taking out, and harm nothing else. Healing is quicker and less painful.
It is good for us to be in God's hands, vulnerable to Him. Because He loves us, His goal is always to make us as spiritually healthy as we can be -- to fill us with the life the Holy Spirit gives to everyone who believes in Jesus. As God's children, we grow through Baptism and Holy Communion, reading the Bible and praying, through public worship and acts of service in Jesus' Name. But on those occasions when surgery is called for -- when some sin or evil is threatening to harm us -- God will not do nothing. He will use the Scripture to heal us, removing the evil, and bringing fresh life again.
And if there is pain? He will be right there with us, through the pain, comforting and strengthening us. How could He not, since Jesus gave up His own life in pain to save us all?
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, keep me in Your hands. Strengthen and heal me by Your blessed Word. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.