The Violent Take it by Force.

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

Take by force, harpadzo; Strong’s #726. To take by force, to seize, snatch away, catch up. The word describes the action in transferring Philip from one location to another (Acts 8:39) and Paul’s being caught up to paradise (2 Cor. 12:2, 4). It suggests the exercise of a sudden force.

taking out

In our text, Jesus asserts the “violence” of the kingdom. Jesus’ references to the bold and confrontive style of John the Baptist along with the miraculous ministry of Elijah teach that the kingdom of God makes its penetration by a kind of violent entry opposing the human status quo. It goes beyond the “softness” (Vs. 8).

Jesus defines the “violence” of His kingdom’s expansion by defining the “sword” and “fire” He has brought as different from the battle techniques of political (trying to legislate morality) or military warfare (the Crusades), (compare Matt. 10:34-39 and Luke 12:49-53 with John 18:36).

The violence of the kingdom of God is not caused by political agendas or armed advances by military actions. The violent then who take it by force are people of great enthusiasm and commitment who are willing to respond in prayer warfare and bring forth the message and dynamics of God’s reign.

It is the result of God’s order shaking relationships, households, cities, and nations by the entry of the Holy Spirit’s power working in people.

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Chris
    Mar 11, 2013 @ 18:16:53

    Glad to see you back to blogging. Hope the fish were biting.

    This is a very good definition of the word “harpadzo.” Matthew 11:12 is a difficult verse made more understandable by the Greek translation.

    Thanks, Manny!


  2. Mannyr
    Mar 12, 2013 @ 00:22:30

    I did not catch anything except our grandsons on the lawn. Got tied up with so many things and then we had some great rain. So for a desert dweller I did what was natural, stood out in it and enjoyed it to the fullest. The time off was fun.


  3. Chris
    Mar 12, 2013 @ 17:38:48

    Sounds like you made a great catch! So glad you got some rain…

    Who needs a bathtub?


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