"For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." Hebrews 4:12
It's fantastic to pop up the verse of the day and see this verse, because it came up in conversation a few times yesterday when talking with different people. We were talking about the living, breathing Word of God and how cool the Bible really is. The statement that it is living and active is so true, and explains to us how different verses and chapters can mean different things at different times to us. Did you ever notice that? How certain verses will fit a certain situation in your life for a time? And at other times, other verses just kind of pop out of nowhere and you wonder why you never noticed that particular passage before? It's the living word of God. The actual scriptures, the verses and the words never change, but it's the "layers" the meanings that may change over time, often in regards to how mature you may be in your walk with Christ.
I still have the Bible my parents gave me as a teenager. It's a Study Bible, and I certainly put it to a lot of use, there are tons of verse highlighted and there are notations galore, notes tucked in, things like that. In fact, it's still my favorite Bible to use, and every time I buy a new Bible, I lament the fact that it's not the same as my Study Bible for teens. But what is especially interesting to see is when I open up the Bible the verses that are most often highlighted and notated are about love and friendship. 1 Corinthians 13 is highlighted in several different colors, circled, and underlined in pen. And I remember doing all that... I was a teenager, lamenting the lack of "luv" in my life and reading love verses as something romantic and written about real love. Those verses were important to me because they gave me hope about finding love with someone in the future.
That was important to me then, and that's how I saw it, which was just fine for that season of my life. But now, I read those verse, and I read a lot of the love verses in the Bible, and I see them with different eyes. I see them with the eyes who have experienced the love that turns into a commitment of marriage, and more importantly, I see these verses in a new light- I see them written not about love between two people, but love from an awesome God. I can read 1 Corinthians 13 and read it as I'm trying to understand how God loves me, and how to love others as God does. That is the season that I am in now, and that's what these verses are saying to me. The exact same verses, just a different layer of understanding.
It's the living Bible that keeps me coming back for more. For a time I didn't read my Bible so much, because I knew what was in it. Oh, I'm no expert- I can't just rattle off verses and references like so many people (I wish!) but I thought I knew the Bible, I read it several times through, and that was good. But now, I'm in a new season of my life where these old verses have new meaning. Old Bible stories take on a whole new life when viewed through different eyes, even though you know how they turn out in the end. I still think one of the coolest studies I've ever done was when our small group studied Exodus last winter, I truly had no idea how much of that could apply to me today. It was fascinating and fantastic, and I've gone back and read it through so many times since, because it's exciting to me to read it again and see those wonderful nuggets of information.
So keep diving into the Word of God. You never know which verse is going to leap off the page for you today- personally, I like to pick up my Bible and read until that very thing happens. Sometimes I'll only read one verse and it will sing to me straight off the pages. Sometimes, I'll read ten or twelve chapters, or entire books before something catches me. It's exciting either way, and I'll continue diving in. I just wish I could find another Bible that I like as much as my teenage study Bible. :-)