August 4, 2002 pm


Then came there two women, that were harlots, unto the king, and stood before him. And the one woman said, O my lord, I and this woman dwell in one house; and I was delivered of a child with her in the house. And it came to pass the third day after that I was delivered, that this woman was delivered also: and we were together; there was no stranger with us in the house, save we two in the house. And this woman's child died in the night; because she overlaid it. And she arose at midnight, and took my son from beside me, while thine handmaid slept, and laid it in her bosom, and laid her dead child in my bosom. And when I rose in the morning to give my child suck, behold, it was dead: but when I had considered it in the morning, behold, it was not my son, which I did bear. And the other woman said, Nay; but the living is my son, and the dead is thy son. And this said, No; but the dead is thy son, and the living is my son. Thus they spoke before the king. Then said the king, The one saith, This is my son that liveth, and thy son is the dead: and the other saith, Nay; but thy son is the dead, and my son is the living. And the king said, Bring me a sword. And they brought a sword before the king. And the king said, Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one, and half to the other. Then spoke the woman whose the living child was unto the king, for her bowels yearned upon her son, and she said, O my lord, give her the living child, and in no wise slay it. But the other said, Let it be neither mine nor thine, but divide it. Then the king answered and said, Give her the living child, and in no wise slay it: she is the mother thereof.

(1Ki 3:16-27)

A truly complicated case was brought before Solomon.

  • Two harlots, wicked sinful women, came for justice.
  • Imagine the irony.
  • The one harlot claimed she gave birth to a child three days before the other.
  • The other mother allegedly laid on her new-born and killed it by accident.
  • She then slipped the true mother's sleeping child out from within her bosom, and replaced her dead child there instead.
  • When she awoke and light was clear, she the child in her bosom was dead, and saw something about the newfound dead child that made her realize it was not her own.

Now, how would this mother know what happened during her sleep?

  • If she was sleeping, how did she know the elaborate story occurred with the other mother?
  • How did she know the other mother laid on her child and killed it.
  • I suppose it would be common sense, for what else could have occurred?
  • At any rate, there was no evidence to prove her case.

That made the case hard.

Not only that, but she told Solomon that there was nobody else in the house.

  • No witnesses.

And both were harlots.

  • One was outwardly no more trustworthy than the other.
  • One's word was no better than the other's word.

What a predicament!

Solomon heard the other woman say the dead child was the first mother's child, and the living was her's.

So Solomon repeats the women's stories, solely to indicate to all that there is absolutely no conclusive proof either way.

  • It's one person's word against the other.
  • But Solomon just prayed for wisdom in verse 9 of the same chapter.
  • And God gave it to him in verse 12.
  • So with the wisdom of God, Solomon demands a sword be brought into the courtroom.

The sword will bring out the truth.

He demands that the sword divide the child and that each half be given to the each woman.

  • Both claimed the child so both should get one half.

The actual mother suddenly yearned in her soul for the child.

  • True love came forth in obvious indication of her truthfulness.
  • Her words were not more convincing than the other's words.
  • Anyone can speak words.
  • Liars can sound convincing, so words are not enough.
  • But there is one thing that liars cannot manifest.
  • There is one thing that shows liars up for what they really are.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

(Joh 15:13)

This woman's love for the child rose out from within her.

  • She did not love in mere words.
  • She loved in DEED.
  • She realized that if she sacrificed her own pleasure of holding her child in her arms, the child would live.
  • If she handed over her rights to the child in sacrifice of her peace to the other woman, the child would not die.
  • She sacrificed herself so the child could live.

Meanwhile the hate in the other woman and the wickedness came forth also.

  • She had enough love for the child to stubbornly cling to the child to the extent of standing before Solomon in court of law for justice.
  • But her love was not enough love to sacrifice herself for the child, proving she could not be the mother.
  • Furthermore, she agreed for the child to be divided.
  • And the trial by the sword revealed her bitterness.
  • Since she could not have her child, then let the child die so nobody could have it!

The sword brought out the true state of their hearts.

Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.

(Mat 10:34-39)

Jesus brought a sword to bring out the truth.

  • Who really loved Him?
  • How much do we really love Him?
  • He said that He brought division.
  • Here is what He meant.
  • There will be situations in which our love for Christ will be on trial.
  • Anyone can SAY they love God.
  • But faith without works is dead.
  • In some families, some fathers will forbid their sons from serving God in order to remain at home.
  • Jesus demands obedience to Him before obedience to the fathers in such instances.
  • If a person really loved the Lord, love for the father comes second.
  • Sacrificing the life at home would have to take place, because a son who loves Jesus is not going let go of Him for a mere house in earth, when Jesus has a house of glory together with Him.
  • Same with mothers and daughters, etc.

Beware of churches where the real sword of God is present.

  • God will move in such a way that your sincerity in heart will come out and show itself.
  • Or your hypocrisy will also be displayed and revealed.

The sword brought out Abraham's love for God.

And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I. And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.

(Gen 22:9-12)

God made it known that Abraham had true love for Him, enough to sacrifice.

And the wonderful thing is that when you lose your life in sacrifice, God gives it back.

  • He gave isaac back.
  • He gave the true mother's child back.

And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.

After Jesus spoke of bringing a sword, He said if we lose our life in sacrifice to God for obedience to Him, then we will get it back!

Sacrifice proves true love.

Sacrifice is made of something that is precious and valuable.

  • Not some old unwanted item is ever used for sacrifice.
  • Something precious is used.

The way of Life is kept by a sword.

So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

(Gen 3:24)

A sword stands in the way.

This sword cuts to the heart!

  • We love and we believe with our hearts.
  • If our hearts truly love Jesus and truly believe, we will walk through the sword.
  • The sword only slays evil and sin.
  • And a true heart that loves God will survive the sword, because sin is not part of it.
  • The heart truly wants God.
  • It wants God so much, that it is willing to let God take away the sins that our flesh enjoys.
  • But the heart loves God more than the sins.

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God ;

(2Ti 3:1-4)

But those who love pleasures more than God will manifest that again and again in a church where the sword of God works on our hearts.

  • Tonight the sword is revealing some things.
  • It will either be just another service to the one whose heart does not reach for God.
  • And it will expose those hearts.
  • But it will also draw out the ones whose hearts want Him.

Only if you've given God your heart would you dare approach the Garden entrance where the sword stands.

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

(Mat 7:13-18)

The way of life is narrow because Genesis tells us it has a SWORD.

It cuts away.

It demands sacrifice.

If you do not want to lose this world you won't go to the sword that cuts away the things of the world.

The sword shows who is who.

Anyone can call Jesus Lord, but whom does He really KNOW?

  • Know is an INTIMATE TERM.
  • Adam KNEW Eve.
  • Intimacy.
  • Real love for God wants the sword to work.
  • Whatever it takes to draw closer to Jesus, that is what the heart for Jesus wants.
  • Take it all, what the world can offer me take it all.
  • I want Jesus more than anything.

Hearts for God do not fight and squabble over what they wish to retain.

  • Our love for our possessions and pleasures will outweigh our love for God if we refuse to sacrifice them to Him.

The sword tells the story.


And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant?

(Jos 5:13-14)

Joshua stood up to the sword.

  • He knew he believed God, and therefore knew God was with him.
  • You would not do that if you were not real.
  • You'd run.
  • And Joshua learned it was actually God's angel!

You know if you're honest or not.

If your heart is not right, get it right today.

  • Love is a decision.
  • Start choosing to serve and Love God with all your might.
  • Put your treasures in heaven instead of in earth's pleasures.
  • Remember Lot's wife.
  • She looked back because her heart was in Sodom, so God left her with Sodom in judgment.