In Part 1 of the Violent Take It By Force, join Ashley and Carlie Terradez as they explore the book of Matthew and the example Jesus gives us through John the Baptist. You are fully equipped! Be encouraged to actively pursue the Kingdom of God and everything He has provided for you.

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The primary scriptures explored in this teaching are Matthew 11:11-12, Matthew 13:17, and Hebrews 11:13.


Ashley: Hello and welcome to Abundant Life, we’re so glad you’ve joined us today. We’ve got a great program for you today, praise God. We’re going to be talking about how the violent take it by force. The kingdom of God suffers violence, praise God. That’s a verse that some people get confused about, but today we’re going to look into that passage, praise God, Jesus.

Carlie: I’m intrigued.

Ashley: You’re intrigued aren’t you? I know. The Jesus tool, praise God, but this is Abundant Life, and we love that you’re watching today, praise God. I’m actually with my wife, Carlie and our ministry if you like is empowering believers in the promises of God. That’s what we love to do. So if you’re watching today, we want you to leave empowered in God’s promises, praise God. So if you’ve got your Bibles, we get straight into the word here, we don’t mess around.

We get into the word, praise God. So we have got some fun things kind of we’re going to be talking. We’re going to share a testimony with you from one of the viewers that sent in. And we also got a great question that you sent us. So thank you for sending your questions. We’re going to be answering those in a little bit, but first of all, let’s get right into the word, praise God, because that’s where the life is, amen? So get your Bibles out or your iPhones or iPads or Androids or whatever you use for Bibles now. You know, my pastor gives me a hard time because he still uses a paper Bible. Yes,

Carlie: There’s nothing wrong with a paper Bible.

Ashley: You still like your paper Bible?

Carlie: I do. You know what, it doesn’t need charging, it’s always on, it never crashes.

Ashley: And it’s such a big Bible.

Carlie: I can stand on the word easily.

Ashley: If you can’t reach something on the top shelf, you just stand on the word and reach the things on the top shelf. It is a big Bible.

Carlie: Yeah, it’s great for Bible bashing.

Ashley: So Carlie actually travels with this Bible, which is huge.

Carlie: It is.

Ashley: And is it five pounds?

Carlie: It’s a six pound Bible.

Ashley: Six pound Bible. So she travels-

Carlie: It has it’s own suitcase.

Ashley: You know, we’re in economy, we’ve got little tray tables, she pulls out the big six pound Bible and slaps it on the, on the person in front of it was like rocking with the weight of the Bible. The plane’s like… anyways.

Carlie: Sometimes they have to rearrange the people to balance the weight.

Ashley: Yeah, to balance the weight of your Bible. I use an electronic Bible. So anyway, I’m in my electronic Bible here, but if you’ve got your Bibles turn to Matthew 11. We’re going to look at Matthew 11 here. This is Matthew chapter 11 and verse 11. And these couple of scriptures, they’re actually scriptures that people often get tripped up on or get confused about. And I believe we’re going to be sharing some revelation today. You’re going to love this, praise God. This is Matthew 11, starting at verse 11. This is Jesus speaking, it’s in red. If your Bible has got one of those red letter ones, you’ll see it’s in red, this is Jesus speaking. Matthew 11, 11, he said, “Assuredly. I say to you among those born of women, there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist, but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.”

Verse 12, “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.” I always say, take it by force. Take it by force.

Carlie: You have to grit your teeth.

Ashley: I like to say “Take it by force.” Yeah, it’s like I’m changing gear, isn’t it? Take it by force.

Carlie: There you go.

Ashley: So anyway, the violent take it by force. I don’t know what that is, but if you’re there at home, just take it by force. If you’re driving in your car and you listen to this, don’t change gear, but anyway.

Carlie: So who are the violent?

Ashley: We’re going to unpack it.

Carlie: Oh, sorry.

Ashley: Going to unpack it, don’t get ahead of me.

Carlie: I jumped.

Ashley: We’re going to unpack it here. So let’s start off, in the with the first part of this verse, Jesus says “Among those born of women, there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist.” Let me clear this up for you real quickly. Okay. John, the Baptist, he’s the greatest person to ever live outside of Jesus. So that’s why Jesus says born of a woman. Basically he’s excluding himself. Jesus was the greatest person to ever walk on the earth. He was a hundred percent God, and he was a hundred percent man. Jesus was deity. He had everything. Colossians two talks about how he had the fullness of the Godhead dwelling in Jesus was complete, praise God. He was the greatest person ever to walk the earth. But outside of Jesus, John the Baptist was the greatest person to ever walk on the earth. That’s what Jesus says right here.

He says “Outside of those born of women, there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist” But ready for this? This gets a little crazy. “But he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than him.” He who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater, and here’s what Jesus is saying right here. He’s saying the new covenant is so powerful. See John the Baptist was born under the old covenant and Jesus is saying those born under the new covenant, it’s such a difference being born in the new covenant compared to the old covenant, that if you’re the least in the kingdom of heaven, if you just scraped in, if you got born again on your death bed and you did no good works, you just got born and you scraped in, you are greater than John the Baptist under the new covenant.

So what Jesus is saying, every person born again under the new covenant, every person born again is greater than John the Baptist, is greater than every person born under the old covenant. Now this is a big deal. You think about this. We’re talking about everyone in the old covenant. Now us, being in the new covenant are greater than them. And this may sound sacrilegious. You might say, “Hang on a minute. You’re talking about some of my big Bible heroes.” We can look at those in a minute. Yes, you watching at home right now, wherever you’re watching from, if you’re born again, if Jesus is your Lord and savior, you have more than the old Testament prophets had, than the old Testament heroes have. Choose your hero. You have more than them.

Carlie: Wow.

Ashley: Isn’t that amazing?

Carlie: And when you just think back on some of the accomplishments… the walls of Jericho coming down, the crossing of the red sea, the destroying of armies of millions of people. I mean some of just the battles alone that they won. Some of the exploits that they did. And then you think us as new covenant believers have more power, more authority, more anointing than they had? But look at what they accomplished with their little, that they did have.

Ashley: What they’ve got. [Crosstalk] in fact, I had a dream. The way this teaching came about is I had a dream, and in my dream I was in heaven and I was running up to Noah and King David and all my Bible heroes, you know all the old testament Bible… I’m sure you’ve got your own Bible heroes, but some of my Bible heroes, I was running up to them and I was… I go up to Abraham and I was like… Well, you got to remember sometimes it’s good to think things through a little bit here. Sometimes we read the Bible and we hear these stories, don’t think about it. You understand Noah, Abraham, Moses, whoever you want to talk about, they had the same God as you have.

Carlie: They were real people.

Ashley: They were real people. And God is the same God. He’s not God old testament, God new testament. He’s the same God. They had the same God as you and I have. It’s the same God, he doesn’t change. He’s the same yesterday, today, and forever. So God was the same God that they were having relationship with. So in my dream, I went up to Abraham said, “Abraham, what was it like to be called a friend of God?” I said, “What was it like, God called you a friend?” And I went up to King David, I said, “King David, what was it like to be called a man after God’s own heart?” And I was going up to these Bible heroes, like, “Noah, what was it like to build an art? It never rained before, how’d you work that out?” And I was going up to Elijah and prophets of power and all that, “What was that like?” And Elisha, and running and all these heroes, I was picking all my favorite Bible heroes.

“Moses, what was it like seeing the red sea part? That’s pretty cool. What was it like to do these things?” And I was really excited to meet these old Testament Bible heroes. And what happened in my dream was it went [inaudible] and in my dream, those Bible heroes came to me and they stopped me and they said, “Ashley”, and there’s nothing special about me. You watching at home or wherever you are, you listening, they could say the same about you if you’re born again. They came up to me and they said “Ashley, what was it like to have the Holy spirit indwell you?” Because they said, “We had the Holy spirit visit us now and again, if we were fortunate, and that was it.”

They said “Ashley, what was it like to have the complete word of God from the beginning to the end? We only had a small fraction of the word, and we didn’t even have access to it all the time. What was it like to have the whole word of God, access from the beginning of the word to the end of the word?” They come to me and said “What is it like to know Jesus, to know that God himself would come down and die in your place? What was it like to have a relationship? What was it like to have Christ in you? The hope of glory? What was it like to have the church? What was it like to have your own prayer language? And we had to pray in tongues.”

They were asking me these things and I realized all these things the old Testament heroes never had.

Carlie: Right.

Ashley: They didn’t have these things. They didn’t have the Holy spirit indwell in them. They didn’t know Jesus. They didn’t have Christ in them. They didn’t have their own prayer language. They didn’t have the full Bible, the full word of God. They didn’t have church. They didn’t have these things. And it blew me away. I was like, “Wow.” And I said “It’s awesome.” And then in my dream, this is my dream, and in my dream they said, “What did you do with all that?” because you know, there’s a scripture here, I love this, this is in Matthew 13. Matthew 13:17, Jesus puts it this way “For assuredly, I say to you,” Matthew 13:17, “that many prophets and righteous men desire to see what you see and did not see it. And to hear what you hear and did not hear it.”

And then I like this as well, in I believe it’s Peter, it talks about how they long to look on these things. In first, Peter says they longed to. So I realized, you know what? They never had these things. So they said to me, “What was it like actually to have the Holy spirit and dwell in you? What was it like to have the church and the Bible and all these things?” And I said it was awesome. They said, “What did you do with it?” They said, “We did these exploits, we only had a little bit of the Holy spirit now and again visit us. Only a little bit of the scriptures, we never had the full word of God. We never even knew about Jesus, we never had Christ. We never had that concept. We never had a prayer language. We didn’t have the Holy spirit, but we did all these things.”

And you know, some of the things they did, we know they obtained promises, they stopped the mouths of lions. This is out of Hebrews 11. They quenched the violence of fire. They went through a fiery furnace and survived. They shut the mouths of lions.

Carlie: They saw people raised from the dead.

Ashley: They saw people raised from the dead. Like you said, they marched around the city seven times and the walls fell down. They saw these supernatural things, returned to fight armies. They raised people from the dead. They escaped the edge of the sword. All these exploits that the old Testament heroes did I suddenly realized all these things and they said, “This is what we did with the little bit, now what did you do?” And they looked at me, not in a condemning way, but they looked at me, these old testament heroes said “Ashley, what did you do? You had so much more equipment. You had so many more tools than we had.”

Carlie: What did you do with what you had, yeah.

Ashley: And I was like “Well”

Carlie: Worried a bit.

Ashley: “Worried. I mean, gas prices are going up and I had to pay the rent.”

Carlie: Moaned a bit, worried a bit.

Ashley: “I was discontent with some things and I’ve gotten strife for my brother. I was upset about brother and sisters at church because they wanted to change the color of the carpet.”

Carlie: Oh no. You’ve killed some sacred cows, right?

Ashley: And what I realized was how, and again not a condemning way, but I’m here to tell you what we have in Christ is so powerful. We can do greater things than what these old testaments did. That might be different now under the new covenant, we’re not going to call fire down from heaven and things like that, but we can do exploits, praise God. And we have so much more available to us. We have so much more than our old Testament heroes had. So pick your old testament hero, and think you have more than them. You’ve got more power than them. You’ve got more anointing than them. You’ve got the Holy spirit indwelling you. You’ve got the full word of God. You’ve got all these things. If you’re a born again believer today, you have all these things.

That’s the truth about you. And you have more than all the old Testament people. You’re greater than every old Testament believer.

Carlie: What if I don’t feel like it?

Ashley: I don’t feel like it. I mean, one preacher said this. He said, “I don’t ask myself how I feel. I tell myself how I feel.” Now, I’m not saying discount your feelings. I believe feelings can be good. I believe feelings can be an indicator of things going wrong, just like pain. You know, if you put your hand on a hot stove and it hurts, you move your hand away. That’s a good use of pain if you’d like, but we can’t be driven by our feelings. See our feelings will follow what we think on. This is another whole lesson now.

Carlie: And they don’t always tell the truth.

Ashley: They don’t always tell the truth. We can feel… I’ve had feelings. I mean, I’ve felt… like the one time when you went out in my buggy, do you remember that?

Carlie: Oh, I’ve got to tell this story, okay? Because we had this, it was like a dune buggy thing and it didn’t have any seatbelts on and Ashley-

Ashley: Hadn’t gotten around to fitting the seatbelts.

Carlie: It was a recreational thing and Ashley would drive it around.

Ashley: It was road legal. I got it road legal.

Carlie: He promised me that it was perfectly safe, has a roll cage. And it has no restraints. Perfectly safe when he’s driving it.

Ashley: I told you it’s perfectly safe. But the truth was, it was just a challenge to keep it in a straight line. This thing was a bad deal. It was. And anyway, and I told Carlie it was safe so she won’t worry about,

Carlie: So then Violet took it by force that day and decided to go out with her friend, me and my friend, we went out.

Ashley: In my buggy.

Carlie: In the buggy. And Ashley was absolutely convinced that we were going to crash.

Ashley: Well, I phoned you on your cell phone, and you didn’t answer.

Carlie: I was driving. I couldn’t answer the phone.

Ashley: I couldn’t leave the house because I had three little toddlers at home. This was many years ago. And I phoned and you didn’t answer, and half an hour turned into an hour. And all I knew was is that she’d gone out in my buggy. And I said to her, I said, “She’s going to [inaudible]. “You told her it was safe.” I said, “Not that safe.” So I was convinced anyway, you’d wrecked. It was raining, you’d wrecked, and you’d died. And you’d left me with three kids. And I started to feel grief and remorse.

Carlie: So your feelings were lying to you.

Ashley: My feelings lied to me, but I actually felt real grief.

Carlie: Because none of those things obviously happened.

Ashley: They weren’t true. You came back and you was fine and you drove it fine and everything else. And I did fit seatbelt safety harnesses after that, so it was safer. But maybe you’ve been in a point of fear. You know how many times have I done this? You know, in the night or something there’s a noise or you see something and all of a sudden you had that experience of fear. You know, that flight or-

Carlie: Fight or flight.

Ashley: Fight or flight.

Carlie: Your imagination starts running away with itself.

Ashley: So your thoughts, if you think on something, your feelings will follow what you think on. You can actually seriously feel those feelings. You can actually feel those feelings and they feel real. They really feel real. So what you’re saying is what if you don’t feel like equipped?

Carlie: You’re talking about people in the old Testament that when we read them today, I mean they seem so strong and powerful, and they seem like violent people, right?

Ashley: Oh, yeah.

Carlie: I mean, there’s a lot of violence in the old testament.

Ashley: Literal violence, but also violence of attitude. And that’s what you’re talking about today.

Carlie: Right, and violent in different areas. But I’m just thinking about people that are watching that maybe feel depressed, maybe feel like they’re victims rather than victorious.

Ashley: Yeah. And I know the neat thing is is that God used real people in the Bible. So again, choose your old Testament hero and go and look at them. Or new Testament, doesn’t matter, really. Anybody that God used in the Bible outside of Jesus was not qualified to be used by God. In fact, they had some serious baggage.

Carlie: And God used them anyway.

Ashley: God uses me, right? I mean, we’re talking about cowards, which I’ve got to be careful, I’m going to meet these people in heaven one day. So I don’t want to be-

Carlie: I think by the time you get to heaven, you probably won’t really care.

Ashley: It’ll be okay. But you know, we’re talking about cowards, we’re talking about, you know, Peter denied Jesus.

Carlie: Adulterers.

Ashley: Adulterers, cheaters, murderers, people that are hiding, people that were deceitful, people that sold their wives off as their sister. I mean, all sorts of crazy people. Swindlers, people that were depressed, people that were downcast, people that gave up and things like that. These are the people that God used. And it just shows you that God can use anyone, praise God. And God loves to take the seemingly small things, the weak things, praise God, to show his strength through them. He takes the lowly things, amen? And exalts them. He takes the seemingly foolish things to profound the wise. And that’s what God does. And that, that means God gets all the glory because none of these people were really qualified. You could go through all the old Testament characters, none of them were really qualified. It was God who qualified them, it was got who used them. I mean, it’s because God was with them, that they were used. So these people, they did some great things in the Bible. They did it all by faith.

Hebrews 11, we may get there later… Or Hebrews 11:13, let me read you this scripture. Hebrews 11:13 says it this way. It says “These all died in faith.” Talking about the old Testament believers, the old Testament heroes, Hebrews 11, we call it the faith hall of fame, right? Hebrews 11, so “These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.” So these old Testament heroes, they had an idea or a picture or a shadow of Jesus and of the promises. And that’s how they believed, but they never experienced them like we get to experience them today.

Isn’t that amazing? They never get to experience the supernatural power of God, and they never get to experience the spiritual gifts, and never get to experience some of the things we experience. That we get to experience today. They never got to experience those things. They saw them from afar off, but yet they were still courageous, and they still went after those things. This is first Corinthians, in your Bible it’s First Corinthians 10:11. Let me read you this, first Corinthians chapter 10 verse 11 puts it this way. “Now all these things happened to them.”, talking about the old Testament heroes, “All these things happened to them as examples. And they were written for our admonition.” That’s how you say that right, for our admonition?

Carlie: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ashley: “Upon whom the end of the ages have come.” So they were written for our example, to encourage us, to give us an insight into accomplishment, to show us, to give us a reference point if you like. They were written for us, these things were written down. There’s another verse talks about a great cloud of witnesses and things like that. So these things happened to these old Testament characters for our benefit, so we could learn from them. But the fact is we have more as born again. Believers, praise God.

Carlie: Yep.

Ashley: So that’s Matthew 11:11. We have more as born again believers, praise God. And what happened in that dream showed me we are fully equipped. If you’re a believer today, you are fully equipped. God has provided everything you need to life and godliness, praise God. God has provided everything you need to be a success. In fact, God sees you as a success in Christ already. Even if you don’t feel like it, even if your circumstances don’t look like it, God sees you as a success.

Now, Jeremiah 29:11, everyone knows that verse as a fridge magnet verse, I call it. A verse you put on your coffee mug. I haven’t got it on this one, but Jeremiah 29:11, we’ve actually got this over our fireplace haven’t we?

Carlie: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ashley: “For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord.” One translator says “Plans to prosper you, and to give you a long and prosperous future.” The New King James says “To give you an expected end.” God has plans for you. He sees you as a success in Christ. Now how can two walk together unless they agree? We need to agree with how God sees us.

Carlie: Right.

Ashley: We’re already fully equipped. We need to agree how God sees us. And if your circumstances don’t look like it, your feelings don’t look like it, even your thoughts don’t look like it, it’s up to us to agree with how God sees us.

Carlie: Amen.

Ashley: Start agreeing with how God sees us.

Carlie: And start speaking over ourselves and our situations what the word of God says about us. And it’ll have an impact.

Ashley: Amen. Rather than just speak out of circumstances.

Carlie: Amen, if we want word of God results, we need to be speaking the word of God.

Ashley: Amen. Before we get into the next verse, this would be a great time to share a testimony.

Carlie: Oh yeah, sure. I have it.

Ashley: We have a testimony. Thank you for writing in. If you want to write in, we want to make sure we voice your testimonies. We believe it’s powerful because when our daughter was healed, many years ago, we saw a testimony of someone else receiving their healing. And that inspired our faith. Now we overcome by the blood of the lamb, what Jesus has done and the word of their testimony, so when you share your testimonies, it helps you because it makes it more real to you and it helps others. So we’ve got a viewer testimony coming in here.

Carlie: And this is from Lori. And Lori says “C arlie, pray for people who were dealing with skin rashes. She says, I received my healing. When you took authority over skin rashes. It didn’t go instantly, but I knew that it was dead at the root, and a week later, it was completely gone from my face.” I mean, that’s a great example there about somebody that heard that they weren’t a victim, but they were victorious. That they had authority. That they received a word spoken in authority, and more than that, they hung on to that word, even when it took a process for that word to manifest.

Ashley: Yeah, that’s good. So why wasn’t it instant then in this testimony, it was a week. Is it God’s will for us to wait for our healing?

Carlie: That’s a great question. You know, sometimes… and we actually have a whole teaching series called Manifesting Miracles, which deals with this topic in detail. Sometimes it we know that God’s promises are yes and amen, but sometimes there’s a period of time between the yes and the amen. Now God’s not-

Ashley: Seed time.

Carlie: Right? And God’s not up in heaven deciding how long it’s going to take you to receive an implanted word in your heart and for it to bear fruit. In other words, from the point in which somebody maybe lays hands on you or speaks a word in praise for you and the healing to manifest in your body. God’s not deciding how long that takes, but sometimes there is a process of time. We can see this in scripture. It says as they went, they were healed. Now I don’t believe that this period of time needs to be years or, or months, or a long time.

Ashley: It could be instant, right? God’s best is instant.

Carlie: It could be instant, God’s best is instantaneous. But what I want you to understand is the minute that we receive a word spoken in authority and put faith to that word, it goes to action immediately, even in an area where we cannot see it. And oftentimes people give up in the middle of a process of something that’s happening. There are many times that I’ve prayed for people and they’ve received instantaneously, but there are many more times when I’ve prayed for people and they’ve had to take it by faith because the word of God is working on the inside of their body, in an area maybe where we cannot see just yet. And the temptation is to think, “Well, I can’t see any different. I can’t feel any different.” And almost dig up the seed of faith that we’ve just sown with what I called the shovel of unbelief.

Ashley: You dig up the seed.

Carlie: You dig up the seed with the shovel. And just like if you were to plant a natural seed in the ground and dig it up to see if it was growing, it would die, we need to take the word of God at face value. Use our authority, just like you said at the beginning, “I’m taking it. It’s mine. I don’t care what my feelings are telling me. I don’t care what it looks like. I’m not living in the realm of my five senses.” And we take it by faith knowing that the word of God is working on the inside of us. Even if we don’t see it yet. And the scripture says we walk by faith and not by sight. And so sometimes it does look like there is a period of time. Lori said it was a week later it was completely gone from her face. And she didn’t see that rush out instantly, but she knew it was dead at the root. And that’s the key. You know, when Jesus spoke to the fig tree, it started to wither up from the roots .

Ashley: Yeah, because one account of the fig tree, when Jesus cursed the fig tree, one account of the fig tree said that the fig tree instantly died. And then another accounts said 24 hours later.

Carlie: It was the next day.

Ashley: So what is it?

Carlie: Both accounts are true. The minute the words leave our mouth, they’re that powerful. Our words contain power. Life and death are in the power of our tongue. The minute we speak this word of God out, we release power and faith in those words. And they go to work effectively in the very area in which you send to them.

Ashley: The minute Jesus cursed that fig tree, it did die, but it was in the root, so they didn’t see the physical results to that until 24 hours later.

Carlie: Because the word was working below the surface.

Ashley: Even though it happened instantly.

Carlie: Yes.

Ashley: So it’s always God’s will for instant results. That’s his best.

Carlie: Amen.

Ashley: But I say to people, if you’ve been living with something for months or years, then what’s another few weeks. But you don’t have to, you can believe [crosstalk].

Carlie: Well if you’re in pain, it means a lot.

Ashley: What I’m saying is is that God wants you well, is the bottom line of this. And Lori, thanks for your test. And that’s a great testimony, especially a rash on your face, I’m so glad that’s gone. That must be a big relief for you. And it must be awesome for you to experience that. And we believe it’s God’s will to heal every time. And we know that because Jesus showed that when he was on earth, he said, “If you see me, you’ve seen the father.” Jesus healed everybody that came to him right away, Amen?

Carlie: Yep.

Ashley: So praise God, you can receive your healing. So let me read you the second part of this verse. So in verse 12, so we’ve already read verse 11. This is Matthew 11, verse 12 now it says, “And from the days of John the Baptist until now,” in the new covenant basically, “the kingdom of heaven suffers violence and the violent take it by force.”

This word violent here is talking about to see something, is talking about to press into, to take it, to push into, to actively pursue, okay? It doesn’t necessarily mean violent as in chopping people’s heads off. It can mean that.

Carlie: It doesn’t sound polite.

Ashley: It’s not polite. Faith, if you really believe something, you’re not going to worry about what other people think of you. You’re not going to worry about what your family are thinking or what your friends are thinking. If you really believe something, you want to go after it. The promises of God, praise God, the kingdom of God is worth going after with gusto. It’s worth going after with everything you’ve got.

Carlie: Yeah, it’s a pressing in, isn’t it?

Ashley: It’s a pressing in. The woman with the issue of blood? She pressed into the crowd, somewhere she shouldn’t have been. She shouldn’t have even been there. She could have been stoned just for being there. She pressed in, she took it by faith. The violent take it by faith. The four people who lowered the sick man through the roof.

Carlie: Yeah.

Ashley: They ripped up the roof of the house. Some people believe that was Jesus’ house.

Carlie: You’re talking about people that they didn’t give up when there was opposition or when it was slightly difficult.

Ashley: When they didn’t feel like it, or when the circumstances didn’t line up, when they didn’t see it instantly. We believe in God and we don’t see it instantly, how many times do we give up too soon? So the violent take it by force. I’m telling you, God wants us to rise up and be violent. That means be passionate, press into, go after the things of God, pursue them. A friend of mine puts it this way, says that the proof of desire is in the pursuit. If we really want something, if you really want to get the promises of God at work in your life, then you need to pursue them. Faith is a having and a taking. I love this definition of faith. I know you have your own definition of faith, this is my definition of faith.

One of them, if you like, it says “Faith is believing so deeply that the kingdom of God, with all its authority and all its promises are already ours for the takings.” They’re already ours, all we have to do is take them. They’re already ours for the taking, but it drives us to passionate action, sometimes illogical or even irrational or even dangerous action. Faith could be spelled R-I-S-K, risk. Sometimes faith, walking by faith, is risk-taking. But the return on the investment of that is immeasurable, praise God. So that’s a lot to explain, praise God.

Carlie: It’s a risk worth taking.

Ashley: It’s a risk worth taking, walking by faith, praise God. But let me say that one more time. Faith is believing so deeply the kingdom of God, with all its authority and all its promises, are already ours for the taking that it drives us to passionate action, sometimes illogical, irrational, or even dangerous action, praise God. I’m here to tell you today, you need to go for it with God. The promises of God are yours, he’s already provided them for you.

Take them by force. The violent take them by force, praise God. We’re going to be back real soon to explain some more of this, praise God. I know I may have opened up a can of worms, but we want to pray for you before the show is out, praise God. We want to make sure that we pray for you, praise God. And right now I thank you, Lord, for everyone watching. I thank you that you’ve already provided these promises for them. I thank that it’s already ours for the taking, and I pray Lord, you’d give people boldness. I thank you holy spirit, you’re our greatest cheerleader as we step out and take a step of faith. And whatever it is we’re believing for, whether it’s provision, whether it’s for healing, for whatever it is. I thank you as we step out by faith Lord, you’re right there with us and you give us everything we need to live a life of God in this. Praise God. Thank you, Jesus. Amen.

Carlie: Amen. Let me encourage you. You’re going to win if you don’t quit.

Ashley: You’re going to win if you don’t quit, praise God. You can do this. You can do this, you’ve got everything you need, praise God, to win. We’re out of time, we’ll be back real soon with another episode of Abundant Life. Remember until next time, don’t just settle for living a normal life when you could be living the abundant life. We’ll see you next time.