(CP also Lu 16:16). This enables us to better understand Mt 11:12. In both these passages Jesus is referring to those who, in spite of violent opposition, press in with ardent zeal and intense exertion to secure their place in God's eternal kingdom. It expresses the earnestness believers must have in getting rid of sin and walking in complete obedience to God's word (CP Lu 13:23-24). Strive means to contend for; to compete for a prize; to labour fervently; to take pains; to wrestle as in an award contest, straining every nerve to the uttermost towards the goal. This typifies the force required to take hold of the kingdom, and is presented as the life-task of every Christian in the New Testament church (CP Mt 7:13-14; Jn 6:27; 12:25-26; Ro 8:1-13; 1Cor 9:24-27; Ga 2:20; Eph 4:17-32; Php 2:12; 3:8-16; Col 3:1-10; 1Ti 6:12; 2Pe 1:10-11; 2Jn 8). It is the responsibility of everyone who professes to believe in Christ for their salvation to seek unceasingly in all its manifestations the kingdom of heaven; to strenuously contend for the things of God, and to reject the things that cause enmity with God. The violent are those who will allow nothing to hinder them from ensuring their place in the eternal kingdom of God.
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