An Awful Weapon

On October 2, 1840, Robert Murray McCheyne wrote to the Rev. Dan Edwards after his ordination as a missionary to the Jewish people: “I trust you will have a pleasant and profitable time in Germany. I know you will apply hard to German; but do not forget the culture of the inner man – I mean of the heart. How diligently the cavalry officer keeps his saber clean and sharp; every stain he rubs off with the greatest care. Remember you are God’s sword – His instrument – I trust a chosen vessel unto Him to bear His name. In great measure, according to the purity and perfections of the instrument will be the success. It is not great talent God blesses so much as great likeness to Jesus. A holy minister is an awful weapon in the hand of God.”

2017 D & L Publications

Peter spoke of having “pure minds” (2 Peter 3:1). “Pure” means “found pure when unfolded and examined by the sun’s light; the purged, the winnowed, the unmingled.” “Minds” means “wholesome thinking.”2 It is the one who has an “untarnished mind.”

  “If you think practicing what you preach is rough, just try preaching what you practice” (Bowen Baxter).3


© 2017 D & L Publications


  1. The Preacher’s Portrait, Some New Testament Word Studies, John R. W. Scott, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, MI, Copyright 1961, p. 120
  2. Word Meanings in the New Testament, Ralph Earle, Hendrickson Publishers, Inc., P. O. Box 3473, Peabody, MA, 01961-3473, Copyright 1974, p. 448