I wrote this article back in 2006 and completely forgot about it until tonight, when I was looking through old files. May it bless you.
"For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." - Hebrews 4:12
The newly commissioned soldier of Christ finds himself immediately surrounded by legions of enemies wearing diverse and even false uniforms. Outnumbered and desperate, zealous for God's glory, the impulse of the spiritual novice is to swing that blade in circles; to hack a violent path toward reformation and holiness with the razor edge of scripture. Out he charges, bravely thrusting his iron message through fields of false converts and immature believers alike, until blood flows up to the bridle. Yet he will eventually discover this method not to be the tactic of his King but a way of battle he acquired while in the world.
The Lord of Hosts leads His army differently. Of every military upon earth, the forces of the Holy Spirit are alone commanded to do the unthinkable, to turn their swords upon themselves. God's idea of a well-trained soldier is one who has been tested in the crucible of personal death. Before he can be trusted in greater battles, before his General will send him into the hottest fray armed with such a dangerous blade, he must first prove his respect for its power by tasting the sting. A man of God is disciplined to learn the lessons of the word, to fall under its commandments, and die to himself beneath the weight of the scripture's many awesome precepts.
A weapon wrongly handled may injure indiscriminately, but no weapon given unto men is so unintentionally lethal as the scriptures issued to the servants of the Lord. Properly used, they have power to divide steely hearts and cut the prison bars of false religion. But when the word is mishandled its carrier can lead nations into sin and help damn generations to eternal hell through blasphemous errors. The only men worthy to take up the word are those who have realized its edge and succumbed to its supreme authority.
Let us indeed thrust the word deep into our own hearts. By God's strength may we fall courageously upon the sword of the Spirit so that Christ might resurrect in us a fighting Church, a Holy Spirit filled church; one that contends by the divine power of the living sword.
"Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak." - Ephesians 6:17-20