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Last week I opened up the topic of hearing God’s Voice and I gave you the list of ways in which God had spoken to our Jakarta based Cell Group over th...

Are you Filtering God Out? (Hearing God’s Voice 2)

May 15, 2020

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Bible Gem 1068 - Forcing Your Way In or Just Eager To Get In? (Luke 16:16)

July 2, 2019



The Pharisees, who dearly loved their money, heard all this and scoffed at Him.

ThenHe said to them, "You like to appear righteous in public, but God knows your hearts. What this world honorsis detestable in the sight of God.

"Until John the Baptist, the law of Moses and the messages of the prophets were your guides. But now the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is eager to get in.

Butthat doesn't mean that the law has lost its force. It is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the smallest point of God's law to be overturned."For example, a man who divorces his wife and marries someone else commits adultery. And anyone who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery." (Luke 16:14-18)


What is the meaning of "everyone is eager to get in." 


A survey of the versions give us the following alternatives: 



(AMP)   everyone strives violently to go in [would force his own way rather than God's way into it]. 

(ASV)   every man entereth violently into it. 

(BBE)  everyone makes his way into it by force. 

(CEV)  everyone is trying hard to get in. 

(EMTV)  everyone enters forcibly into it. 

(ESV)  everyone forces his way into it. 

(GNB)  everyone forces their way in. 

(GW)  everyone is trying to force their way into it. 

(ISV)  everyone is trying to enter it by force. 

(KJV)  every man presseth into it. 

(LITV)  everyone is pressing into it. 

(MSG)  compelling invitation to every man and woman. 

(NASB)  everyone is forcing his way into it. 

(NLT)  everyone is eager to get in. 

(RV)  every man entereth violently into it. 


Notice there is a harder interpretation and a softer interpretation. 

The harder interpretation is force a way in, entering violently, taking something by force.

The softer interpretation is trying hard to get in, pressing in, compelling invitation, eager to get in. 

So which is it and why is there this difference? 


The answer lies in the verb βιάζεται from the root βιάζω. It all depends on whether the verb is active or passive. 

If the verb is active then the sense leans toward the harsher interpretation. 

If the verb is passive then the sense leans toward the softer interpretation. 

The problem is it could be either. You make up your mind which do you think is meant given the context.

The object of the action, in other words the "it" referred to is the Kingdom of God. 


There has been much debate over which aspect of the verb holds the focus of this passage. Also what is the interpretation of the passage as Jesus intended it and how does it fit the passage. 


Therefore the options are:

  1. This refers to all those who accept the Good News and eager to enter into the Kingdom. The difficulty here is that everyone doesn’t accept the Good News or have an earnest desire to enter into the Kingdom. 

  2. This refers to those who do not accept the Good News and try to force their way into the Kingdom by some other means. 

  3. This refers to those who refuse to accept the Good News of Christ being the Messiah and actively resist the Kingdom of God.  

In this Gem I am only interested in giving you the alternatives and no more. I am not planning to give you any conclusion. Only to alert you to the range of meaning contained within this verb and lay out the options available for interpreting what is being said here. Tomorrow I will move on to the next verse in this series and deal with the inferences contained within that verse. Then finally the last verse. After that it is a case of us trying to put all of what we know together in order to solve the mystery. Remember the quote I shared with you the other day "

Life is less a matter of getting the right answers and more a matter of asking the right questions." But some of you are not interested in asking any questions are you? You would much rather have the answers given to you.  As Rick Godwin said, "

It's the START that usually STOPS most people!" 



But If You Don't Start, It's Certain You’ll Never Finish. Robb Thompson


You cannot gain experience without paying a price. Bob Gass


You cannot judge what the price will be until after you have gained the experience. Bob Gass


It's tragic to pay the price for experience and not learn the lesson. Bob Gass


Some drink from the fountain of knowledge. Others just rinse and spit. Ian 


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