October 6, 2009

living and active

If I were preaching this Sunday, I think it'd be a heady sermon. I think I'd do all sorts of exegesis and research. I think I'd bore myself and my congregation to tears. And I think, ironically, I'd do it in trying to convey the message that God's Word, neh, God's word, is living and active.

We've all heard this line from Hebrews. It get's said over and over again. God's word is alive. But what we say and how we live are two very different things. How we live often says that God's word ceased to be relevant in 1214. How we live often says that God's word being alive means it is my pet and I control its every action. How we live often says that God's word may very well be active, but only in the way yogurt cultures are active - on my terms - when I let them come to life by removing them from the refrigerator.

Tony Jones got in a lot of hot water a few years ago for saying that the Bible is a *%#@ing scary book. But he's right. If the word of God, lowercase "w", is living and active then it is scary. It is scary because it gets inside of us and changes us. It is scary because it opens our minds and begins to root around in there. It is scary because it tells us things we don't want to hear. It is scary because God is scary and the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

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