“The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of all kinds.” – Dalai Lama
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“From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent are taking it by force.”
Violence is not of God.
You can point all you want to the Old Testament, but all writing there reflects hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years of the human attempt to understand God.
When violent things happened, they believed it was from God.
When good things happened, they believed it was from God.
And when you wanted vengeance and you could believe that God was vengeful and violent, well then, you could be vengeful and violent as well.
But the only problem with this is that Jesus nullified it all.
He said if you knew him, then you would also know God (John 14:7).
Jesus is the human blueprint of God.
And what does Jesus say?
He says that loving your neighbor is of utmost importance (Matthew 22:39).
He says blessed are the merciful and the peacemakers (Matthew 5:7 and 9).
And to make it quite clear, Jesus ordered us to love our enemies (Matthew 5:44).
As Jesus stated in today’s scripture verse, “The kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent are taking it by force.
How is it that those who call themselves Christian can condone the use of violence when Jesus specifically speaks against it?
Is killing your enemies loving them?
The way of Jesus is love and forgiveness.
It’s not an easy way.
It may appear impossible.
But it’s the way we’re called to.
It will likely get you persecuted.
But as Jesus said, “Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (Matthew 5:12).
I choose the way of Jesus.
What will you choose?
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Remember: God loves you!