Chapter One: Taking the Kingdom of Heaven by Violence

I’ve updated the original reading plan to account for two additional weeks, which you can find here. My thoughts on chapter one are below in both audio and video, followed by an outline of the chapter and questions for reflection and/or discussion.

Chapter Outline

  • Introducing the text (pp. 1-3)
  • Violence Concerning Magistrates (pp. 3-4)
    • In punishing the guilty (p. 3)
    • In defending the innocent (pp. 3-4)
  • Violence Concerning Christians (pp. 4-7)
    • What this violence is not (pp. 4-5)
      • An ignorant violence (p. 4)
      • A bloody violence (pp. 4-5)
        • Toward oneself
        • Toward another
    • What this holy violence is (pp. 5-7)
      • Violent for the truth (pp. 5-6)
      • Violent for our own salvation (p. 7)
    • What is implied in this holy violence? (pp. 7-8)
      • resolution of will
      • vigor of affection
      • strength of endeavor
      • the many ways of offering violence
        • to himself
        • to Satan
        • to the world, and
        • to heaven

Questions for Reflection

  • Do you agree with Watson’s premise that “it is easy to talk of heaven, but not to get to heaven?” Why or why not?
  • How can we both be violent in our pursuit of heaven while also resting totally in the finished work of Christ?
  • How do our will, affections, and strength relate to one another? Is there a significance in Watson’s ordering of the three?
  • In what ways are you hoping the rest of this book will be a challenge to you?

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