There isn’t any point in time throughout human history when it was popular to be a true and devoted worshipper of God. That is because the spiritual realm where God exists and the natural realm where He placed humankind are in an endless battle, not against flesh and blood, but between the soul and the spirit. In the King James Version of the Bible, Jesus says, “The Kingdom of God suffers violence”, but what that really means is that your faith is a weapon in spiritual battle!
Some people mistakenly think that when Jesus said, “The Kingdom of God suffers violence and the violent take it by force,” what He really meant is that believers would be endlessly tormented and victimized by the fallen world and its violence – but that is not accurate!
What Jesus meant by His words in Matthew 11:12 was this: “From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has forcefully advanced, and the strong take it by force.” (MEV)
Jesus knew it would take a spiritual force to stand against Satan and advance the Kingdom of Heaven into the darkness and to reach the lost as Jesus commanded in the Great Commission. (Matt. 28:18-20) He knew the forces of the world were strong and violent, raging and plotting. (Psalm 2:1) He knew the enemy would seek to devour. (1 Peter 5:8) He wanted His disciples to meet force with FORCE.
The Kingdom of God Doesn’t Suffer FROM Violence, it IS Violence
Remember, wherever you set your feet, that is the Lord’s territory, but don’t be surprised when the enemy rises up and challenges those boundaries. When Jesus said, “…the Kingdom of Heaven has forcefully advanced and the strong take it by force,” He meant that you should never relent in how you fight against the enemy for the souls of the lost.
It takes strong and faithful men and women of God to forcefully push past their flesh, to forcefully push into the darkness with the light of God, to forcefully push into the spirit realm through prayer and fasting, worship and the Word of God.
If you refuse to embrace the world, be prepared for the world refusing to embrace you.~Alicia Purdy
In Matthew 16:18 Jesus said the gates of Hell would not prevail against the Kingdom of God, but He didn’t say the gates of Hell wouldn’t put up a violent fight! Keep this in mind: If you refuse to embrace the world, be prepared for the world refusing to embrace you. But that doesn’t change what God has called you to do.
Speak louder. Work harder. Love greater. Pray more. Fast and travail in the spirit. Seek for an “IT IS WRITTEN” from God’s Word to stand upon. Be wiser. Be gentler. Don’t be popular, be rejected. (Isaiah 53:3) Be reviled. (Matt. 5:11) Don’t worry, worship. Speak God’s Words of life, hope and truth. Those are spiritually ‘violent’ acts by which you will forcefully bring God’s Kingdom to the earth.
The People in the World Will Suffer if the People of God Don’t Advance
Scripturally speaking, strong emotions, waging battles, prophetic actions, speaking faith words, making bold declarations and refusing to be moved are all part of how the people of God forcefully advance the Kingdom under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
Many of God’s people were people of war and violence, but they were fighting for the Kingdom of God and to rescue them from the control over the Adversary who seeks to “steal, kill, and destroy” them. (John 10:10) There is a time in this world to draw blood and a time to heal. You’ll need the discernment of the Holy Spirit to be led when to fight, when to stand and when to retreat.
Your battle is not against flesh and blood, but that is what it will look like on the surface. Don’t fall into the trap of seeing it all through natural eyes. Learn to see through your spiritual eyes and fight a spiritual battle with spiritual weapons- and you’ll win the battle because, as Jesus said, the Kingdom forcefully advances and the strong take hell by force in a battle that belongs to the Lord!
Thought for today: The Strong Take the World by Force Because God Gave it to Them!
The world is violent and raging and they’re fighting under the control of their “father, the devil” (John 8:44), and they won’t give up – so you can’t give up either. You have a choice: Fight, flight, freeze or faith. What they don’t realize is that the battle has already been won- and you are the enforcer of that victory!
When Jesus said, “…the Kingdom of God suffers violence” – He meant that the people of God are strong enough to withstand the world’s violence and still have enough strength to forcefully advance God’s plan of salvation. How do believers remain that strong? It’s a spiritual strength developed through a lifestyle of worship, the Word of God and the communion of prayer.
You are an integral part of God’s plan of salvation for the world. Don’t worry – He knows you’re not perfect and He still wants you in battle alongside Him. As it is now, many will enter into hell through the broad way that leads to destruction (Matthew 7:13), maybe even people you love. Where does God have you on the battlefield?
Think about that and then start to forcefully advance!
Keep Reading and Fight Faith for the Fight!
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