International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
vı̄´ṓ - lens ; vı̄´ṓ - lent : Chiefly for גּזל , gāzal , חמס , ḥāmaṣ ; βια , bı́a , and their derivatives. Difficulty is offered only by the very obscure passage Matthew 11:12 parallel Luke 16:16 . Both Matthew and Luke contain the verb βιάζεται , biázetai , but this form maybe either a middle, "presses violently," "storms," or a passive, "is forced." Matthew, in addition, contains the adjective biastaı́ , but whether this is a term of praise, "heroic enthusiasts," or of blame, "hot-headed revolutionaries," is again a problem. Nor can it be determined whether the words "from the days of John the Baptist until now" are meant to include or exclude the work of the Baptist himself. The difference in wording in Matthew and Luke further complicates the problem, and, in consequence, scholars are widely at variance as to the proper interpretation. "The Baptist has fanned a new Messianic storm of ill-advised insurrection," "the Pharisees have shamefully used forcible suppression of God's teachers," "the Kingdom of God comes like a storm and is received by those who have used drastic self-discipline," are instances of the differing explanations proposed.
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Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. Entry for 'Violence; Violent'. International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. http://www.studylight.org/enc/isb/view.cgi?number=9007. 1915.