Friday, December 4, 2020

Violent Persons Taking the Kingdom of Heaven

This is not an alarmist post but a preparation post for those who trust my understanding of Scripture. I have been pondering the following Scripture verse for 50 years and never have been satisfied with how it has been taught and preached by the vast majority of preachers and churches.

"And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force." Matthew 11:12

Most translate this by saying that persons exhibiting strong, passionate, and violent faith take the kingdom of heaven. I have always had reservations in my spirit about this translation. I base this understanding on the words of Jesus in Luke 12:32 "Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." God "gives" the kingdom and it is His delight and desire. God's flock (family, friends) does not have to violently and forcefully "take" it.

Who would Jesus be referring to in Matthew 11:12? I firmly believe it is violent and forceful persons. We read about the violent in the Earth in Psalms 2:1-3 "Why do the nations protest and the peoples conspire in vain? Kings on earth rise up and princes plot together against the Lord and against his anointed one: 'Let us break their shackles and cast off their chains from us!'”

We have witnessed a steady move away from God in our nation. It will only increase in the coming years. With this decline in godliness, evil continues to increase. The majority of Americans still believe this nation is "under God" but the majority is quickly eroding. We are witnessing the loss of love for our country, its flag, and its long-established values. We see the loss of respect for those in authority and for the sanctity of life. Those who are anti-law and order and advocate violent protests are taking the kingdom by force. The mainstream media is taking it by force. Many within our government and religious organizations are forcefully taking it. They are "taking it captive!" I will not be silent any longer.

I will be respectful of others who disagree with my opinions and beliefs. I will with the help of God attempt to walk in love. I love God and the kingdom of heaven first and foremost. Just below my love for God and the kingdom is my love for America. I was willing to die for it 50 years ago and I am again today. I will not quietly sit by and watch America be destroyed from within or from outside forces. It is not the responsibility of the government to feed the poor and destitute! It is the responsibility of the churches in every city and community. The Church can no longer abdicate or turn a blind eye to the truly needy of our society.

I see troubled and violence-filled days shortly ahead in our country. I also see shortages of daily necessities in the near future. I also see the beginning of a great spiritual awakening that will sweep across the land. God will not be mocked, muzzled, or ignored. We will be given a season of grace and mercy; one last chance to turn back to God.

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