I saw a post on Facebook on ‘The most wrongly quoted or applied bible verses’ (or something like that) yesterday and it inspired this post.
I have to admit, I did not want to share this because its not exactly the safest topic to write on and I do not exactly like confrontations or arguments.
But when the Lord gives a message, who am I, a mere oracle to refuse to speak?
Anyway, here it goes:
‘And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.’
This scripture has been used in prayer services in churches to justify ’violent’- prayers. These prayers usually involve a lot of shouting and physical exertion that just never sat well with me.
I always had this nagging feeling that the scripture was being used wrongly, especially since I realised that it seemed to be the only verse of scripture used to justify that form of prayer.
In my usual fashion, I went back to the Word of God found this:
The verse has been quoted in isolation and grossly out of context
The entire chapter was about the end of John’s ministry and the beginning of Jesus’ and how they were connected. There was no reference to prayer in that chapter.
One thing that’s prevalent in that chapter is the response of the people to the salvation message.
That’s why I love the way the Amplified Bible puts it, it says:
‘And from the days of John the Baptist until the present time, the kingdom of heaven has endured violent assault, and violent men seize it by force [as a precious prize—a share in the heavenly kingdom is sought with most ardent zeal and intense exertion].’
What does this say to me?
My salvation will be challenged, my walk with God will be questioned, and my living for Christ will attract condemnation and opposition. I have to deliberately guard my salvation even if I have to be forceful about it.
I need to be jealous about maintaining my salvation. I need to deliberately press into heaven by separating myself from anything that can jeopardize my salvation.
Simply put, I need to Guard my Salvation.
Who’s with me?