And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.
If the wrestler must use force when the athletic arm is raised against him, then must we. for we wrestle with principalities and powers. If the warrior must use force when the army cometh against him, then must we use force, for there are squadrons between us and everlasting rest. If the captive must use force when he would wrench off his chains, then must we use force, for the fetters of an evil nature bind us to the earth. If the traveller must use force when there are mountains to be scaled, then must we use force, for a rugged land is before us, and the rocks and the torrents block up our path. Or if the suppliant use force — the force of earnest entreaty, unwearied solicitation, burning tears, and passionate cries, when he would gain a favour from a great one of the earth; then must we use force; we must "pray always and not faint;" we must besiege the mercy-seat, seeing that all we need must come from God; and earnest supplication is the condition on which God bestows.
(H. Melvill, B. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.