LIVING THINGS – The Word of God
E. C. Richards
John 1:1-3, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.” Certainly a sure token of life is creative power. People are called creative that paint a picture, sculpture stone, sew a fine seam, make a new machine. They must all start with something, and the Word starts with nothing and makes all things. So, the Word is person, God, in fact, even though He became the man Jesus Christ. He acted quite lively, even “Wondrously,” as He did in the presence of Samson’ parents. We spend much of our time gawking at what He has made in this temporary creation and admire it quite a bit. This all adds up to life, as a prime name He has taken is the Word.
Heb. 4:12, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” The word has been made available in a form that our minds can use though not of themselves only, known as writing. We see here that it enters into the innermost part of man and shows him what he is, when sin prevents a rational understanding in himself, of himself. It has to be a very superior kind of life that reveals to the spirit of man more of himself than he knows about himself. We are always impressed by superior knowledge and here is the living word coming forth very impressively.
I Peter 1:23, “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.” Here we learn that the very beginning of our spiritual life, and it is life, is by the word of God. It is a good birth, a birth starting a permanent life, and a life that God can accept.
In Roman 10:8-9, it gives the reality of the life-giving ability of the word as “But what saith it? The word is nigh thee even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” The ease of salvation from sin into God’s kingdom is by the might of the word of God, brought to us through preaching, with faith accompanying it. It produces amazing and lasting results, those of life. That’s how the spiritually dead can live – because of their submitting to a living force, the word. Children can receive life, sometimes with more ease than adults, because of their yielding to this force without quibbling over things with a finite mind. Many kinds of people, in fact all kinds, can partake of this living thing. The word is powerful and able to impart life to every one believing it.
In Matt. 4, the temptation of Jesus by Satan gives the power of the written word to overcome this terrible enemy. V. 4, “…It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” And V. 7, “…It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.” And V. 10 “…Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” It is wonderful to see here, the Word using the written word so skillfully and revealing to His children the means for overcoming this heinous enemy. It is our tool, and the Bible has it contained in its few pages (few for so much power and wisdom) for our use in overcoming.
John 6:63, “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” So the Master, Himself, gave it in the proverbial nutshell, the living propensity of the word, and its power to not only give life, but to develop it as food does in the natural. The spiritual man lives by the impartation of the word of God, and we can’t analyze it as we do natural food. The food does its work without us thinking about it, and so does the word of God in the smooth hidden way. That is why the wise child of God stays close to the word in private and church life. The enemy ever tries to divert us from this.
I Peter 1:25, “But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.” This living message, the gospel, is also the word for this age. We well know the life it gives by the myriads of people joined in the earth to the church. This is in spite of all the opposition, imitation, and corruption of truth; the living word still begets and sustains spiritual life. This is proof of its living quality. How marvelous it is to observe the swaying of humanity by the great Spirit of God to His word and bringing them into life and His kingdom and preparing them for the great future He has for the believers in the word. We are blessed indeed, considering all the negative things this world brings contrary to God and His ways. Praise God we were enabled out of death to grasp this precious element of life while passing through this earth scene.
Ps. 107:20, “He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.” The healing power of the word for all three parts of man, herein is revealed by the example-people of God, Israel of old, and it is still so. It is a healer; that is part of its power. Our worst enemy, death, is even to be healed by the resurrection we believe in now. Remember the Roman centurion of Jesus’ day expressed confidence that Jesus could heal solely by the spoken word, and Jesus did just that. So, Jesus, the person, is not with us, but the “logos” or expression of Him, the word, is and still can heal us of the wounds of sin in our whole being. Amen!
What did the old warrior of the gospel, Paul, cry out in last instructions to Timothy, and all following ministers for this church age? II Tim. 4:2, “Preach the word…” That is because it is life and the important thing of church in spite of its competitors for the center stage in church worship or activity. Bless the Lord!
Rev. 19:13, “And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.” The climactic name of Jesus when He comes to take over the earth as supreme monarch, is just this life character of Himself, the Word of God. How fortunate we are to have a part in this life-giving coming forth of God. Amen!