I am a swashbuckling, fence sparing, gladius swinging romantic. Gladiators, Knights, musketeers, and even pirates catch my fancy. As a child my brother and I would wield whatever was handy to engage in sword play; ribs from a broken umbrella, our mom's best cutlery, and actual swords bought from a flee market in Greece.
Two things I learned about sword fighting. First never use your mom's cutlery. It nicks really bad and there is no way to hide it and stay out of trouble. The second thing is that real swords hurt. When my brother, striking with a Greek short sword, plunged it at me I reflexively stuck out my hand. I still have the scar to prove it.
I have under my bed (because my wife won't let me hang them in the living room or above our bed) a Chinese flex sword, a Japanese short sword, a Greek short sword, a fencing sword, and a Viking long sword. I am fascinated with the idea of sword fighting, the reality of it less so. Being stabbed, hacked, and empaled hurts and causes death. Sure if your good enough you would live, but from my experience that would not be the outcome..
A sword is important in our spiritual war against the devil. The Apostle Paul said in Ephesians 6:17 that we need to put on the "sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God."
Whenever I have heard people teach on this subject, they go on about how the sword is the only offensive weapon in the armor of God. But I disagree. Swords can be used offensively, but so can the rest of the armor. However, the sword is also a defensive weapon. I don't believe Paul is saying that we should go out swinging God's word at people. That doesn't fit the context. We are to put on the armor of God so that we can withstand the devil's assault. That is a defensive posture.
Our sword is the Word of God, which we hide in our heart so that we don't sin against God. It is our truth against deceit and lies. It is our lamp in the darkness. By it the world was created, the will of God revealed, and the forces of evil demolished. The Word became flesh and turns the heart of stone into living flesh.
Jesus used God's word to fend off Satan's temptations, chastise Pharisees, and encourage the lost and weary. He quoted it and he lived it, and with it he calls us to repentance.
The Word of God is foolishness to unbelievers, it never fails, and through it we believe. It is near to our hearts and sanctifies us. The word of God is taught, preached, declared, delivered, shared, and is boundless.
The word of God is living and active piercing and cutting through the marrow to the soul, and it convicts the world of its sin. The word of God was in the beginning and will be there at the end of days. It was perfectly declared and perfectly preserved. Not one jot or tittle can pass away and will not nor should not be changed.
Then Word of God rightly divided is a powerful weapon to help believers stand against the evil one. How well do you know it, how deep have you hidden it, how often do you share it? If we are to maintain the high call of unity we need to be fully prepared in the objective truth of God's word.
Without the word of God we wouldn't be able to find our way and would be easily tossed by every wind of doctrine. That's how important it is. Tomorrow will ask, how does the word of God help us to maintain the high call of unity in the body? That's what Paul was talking about. I'm just saying..