In every country where democracy is practiced, there is election and voting. Voting is the sacred right of every citizen to decide those who get into elective office (we pray that will be our case in Nigeria some day).
In voting, there are three categories of voter/votes for every candidate seeking office; there are voters/votes for the candidate; there are against the candidate; and there are voters/votes neither for nor against the candidate. These last sets of voters abstain from voting for any or all the candidates for the contested office for varied reasons.
Abstaining from voting is like been neutral in a matter regardless of the reason. That is very possible and in some instances, good judgment and Wisdom but in matters of life and death abstaining is a very dangerous thing because it could be misconstrued to mean a lot of thing not envisaged by you or out rightly detrimental to your wellbeing and safety.
Whilst it is possible (but very difficult and not advisable) to abstain from physical activities and decision no matter how dire they are, being neutral or more or else seating on the fence over life and death issues(over spiritual matters like the salvation of your soul; heaven or hell) is simply impossible.
Why you may ask? Let’s look at this seemingly unconnected Scripture…Matthew 11:28-30
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
. Now, this is the KJ version of this Scripture but to have a better understanding, let’s see other version.
God’s Word translation says;
“Come to me, all who are tired from carrying heavy load and I will give you rest. Place my yoke over your shoulders, and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble. Then you will find rest for yourselves because my yoke is easy and my burden is light”
New International Version says:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light”
From keen observation and verses before these ones, it is clear that this Scripture is first referring to the Human spirit and not his physical body and a human spirit that is suffering/struggling under a kind of influence/bondage placed/laid on it by some persons/powers known or unknown to them either by their actions, inactions, words, birth circumstance, tribal practices, etc. but definitely not “deliberately” by themselves because the ways of everyman seems right in his/her eyes.. ..Proverbs 16:25 and no Man will knowingly place a burden upon himself/herself but with the sole aim of destroying them…John 10:10(a)
What this means is that, once you feel depressed, frustrated, sad, unsatisfied, lonely, incomplete, unfulfilled, emotional tired and drained, mentally fatigued, spiritually in the dark, etc and you see No Hope, No Joy, No Peace which is the same as “labor and are heavy laden/ tired from carrying heavy load and/ weary and burdened”, it means there is a yoke and a burden upon your life.
A Yoke is described a heavy wooden structure that is placed upon an animal (Bull or Ox) to subject it to working in a particular direction and pace you desire. The animal cannot go its own desired direction or work at its own pace and neither can it decide to stop at its own time. Placed upon a human being, it is a tool of oppression, manipulation and ultimately destruction.
How does this Scripture and all these relate to our premise? The subsequent statement from Jesus is the answer to this question.
Jesus says “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
We have earlier established that the Satan places yokes (burdens) on people in the form of negative thoughts and negative outcomes to their life’s pursuit and hopes without their direct permission (in most cases). Now Jesus also says He too places yokes (burden) on people but with their permission, knowledge and Will.
So there is Jesus yoke/burden and Satan’s yoke/burden. So at every given time of a Man’s life, it means he is yoked. He is either yoked for God or yoked for Satan; there are no neutral zones.
God’s yoke is easy and His burden light (…I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly) and Satan’s yoke is manipulative and destructive (The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy).
What this means is that if you don’t give God a chance, Satan will step in (Luke 11:24-26) whether you like it or not and if you want Satan to leave then God must be invited in voluntary…Revelation 3:20
So there are no neutralities; no seating on the fence when it comes to the salvation of your soul because your decision/action or indecision/inaction will not prevent you from being yoked, you will still be yoked but the key question is; Whose yoke?
There are no bystanders; there are no on-lookers; no observers in spiritual matters as it affects the salvation of your soul…you are either hot or cold, no midway house…Revelation 3:15
I pray in accordance with Ephesians 1:18 that our eyes of understanding be enlightened and we will see and know the hope of the salvation of our souls in Christ Jesus and take a definite stand to invite Jesus into our lives to rule and reign because is yoke is easy and His burden light in Jesus name…Amen.