For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword…
The same illustration is used by St. Paul, by Philo, and in the Book of Wisdom, but with a different application in each case. St. Paul likens the Word of God to the sword of the warrior, used as a weapon of the faith (Ephesians 6:17); the Book of Wisdom compares the almighty Word of God to a sharp sword, but uses a different word for "sword," evidently designating the sword of the destroying am, of, which executed God's mandate on the first-born of Egypt (Wisd. 18:16). Philo dwells on the searching and penetrative power of the Word as that which severs all things. In this passage the ideas of the two last authors are combined by way of warning to the disobedient; the Word of God is compared to the sword of the executioner, piercing with its double edge the very heart of the victim. Like the sword, it searches out evil and destroys it; but it is sharper than the sword, because it penetrates into the region of spiritual life, whereas the sword can only divide joints and marrow, and its power is limited to the animal life. The images are borrowed from a court of justice, where the guilty is brought before his judge, convicted, and executed:
(F. Rendall, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
WEB: For the word of God is living, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and is able to discern the thoughts and intentions of the heart.