I saw a blurred vision of a cross, with Jesus nailed to it… God impressed the cross being ‘rooted’ into the ground – yes, the nails had pierced Jesus to it, and the cross had pierced the ground. The cross suddenly merged with a sword and Jesus was no longer on it. The sword was now struck into the ground and like the cross, it was firmly standing!
My first reaction was “Doh, how come I never saw the similarity of the cross and the sword before starting right from the shape?” It was as if the sword was the transformation of the cross; the sharp end of the nails becoming the blades added to the cross.
The blood of Jesus shed on the cross has forgiven us from our past sins…. It made way for us to enter into the presence of God through Jesus and thus the Holy Spirit dwelling amidst us too. However, after we believers have passed that stage, through that initial gate, we now hold the DOUBLE-EDGED sword which is God’s Word aka Jesus.
What comes to your mind when you think of a sword, let alone a double edged one? Jesus clearly stated when on earth that He didn’t come to bring peace but rather that He comes with a sword.
For the word of God is alive 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. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account – Hebrews 4:12
The sword is deeply struck into the ground – God is reminding us that this Word penetrates our beings as spelled out above, whether we like it or not, whether we avoid it or not. His Word does judge us. Our lives of darkness, of deceit, of hypocrisy, of the flesh, of selfish ambition etc etc may be lived out in such a manner that others or even ourselves are fooled but God cannot be fooled and will not be fooled. He is making this imagery vivid as a caution to all.
The cross wasn’t just to extend grace to us but for us to come into His presence and restore the broken intimacy with God and mankind. Yet, we ought to be holy as He is holy. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit… Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12). This isn’t about ‘works’ but rather our preparedness. We are called to take up the helmet of salvation AND the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17). Not one or the other, but both! We protect our head (mind) with the knowledge of salvation and we don’t hesitate to slash the sword at whatever comes in our way of walking in obedience to God along the narrow path.
Jesus’ appearance as the Living One is recorded in Revelations:
In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance – 1:16
The seven stars and lamps in this description are the seven churches and their angels, and He comes with the sharp double-edged sword coming out of His mouth when He speaks to them! Yes, to the believers, He speaks and warns with His Word.