13 Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it (Matthew 7:13–14, NKJV).
Which path are you walking today? That depends on which gate you choose. One gate is wide, accommodating many, and puts you on the path leading to eternal destruction. The other gate is narrow with strict access and puts you on the path leading to eternal life. On another occasion, Jesus said we must “strive (endeavor, JRP) to enter through the narrow gate” to be saved (Luke 13:23-24). Jesus said many “will seek to enter and will not be able” (Luke 13:24). We conclude that desiring to be saved and being saved are not the same. Why not? Because effort is required. We must walk (live) the straitened path of kingdom righteousness (Matt. 7:14; 5:20; 6:33). The gospel call requires repentance, sacrifice, and conversion (Luke 6:46; Rom. 12:1-2). When many hear this, they refuse the narrow gate and confined way. Consider the rich young ruler who, in sorrow, turned away from following Jesus. He lacked one thing to have eternal life; He loved his wealth more than Jesus (Luke 18:18-23). He chose the wide gate and the broad way that leads to destruction. By contrast, saved ones make the kingdom of God their priority (Luke 18:24-29; Matt. 6:33). They enter the narrow gate, walk in the righteousness of the kingdom, and receive abundant spiritual blessings now and, finally, eternal life (Luke 18:30). So, which gate will you enter today? Where do you want to go? Jesus is the Way to eternal life (John 14:6).
13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13–14, NKJV).
We look for ways to make our lives easier, more convenient. Innovations in industry, transportation, technology, and communication produce greater efficiency for countless lives. However, striving for convenience can also have unintended consequences. It can lead to neglect and unrealistic expectations. A harmful entitlement mentality may develop, expecting and demanding comfort and convenience. Jesus uses the simple desire for things to be easy to teach a crucial spiritual truth. The broad path is easy, convenient, and desirable but leads to ruin and loss. Sin is easy, and its outcome is eternal death (Rom. 6:23). Many people walk this spiritual path. All of us have entered the wide gate at some point, for we have all sinned (Rom. 3:23). But we can choose a different path. The narrow gate opens to a path that is “difficult” (confined, like the walls of a narrow canyon) yet leads to life. Turning from sin, seeking, finding, and following Jesus is possible for all, but few choose this path (Matt. 11:28-30; Luke 13:23-24). Following Christ demands self-denial (Luke 9:23). The road to heaven is not lined with the pleasures of sin (1 John 2:15-17). Trials will come when we choose to follow Jesus. Convenience is not the motto of Christians. Faith is refined by trials, strengthening us as we live for heaven (1 Pet. 1:6-9).
13 Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. (Matthew 7:13–14, NKJV)
00:05As Jesus preached the gospel of the kingdom of heaven, He discussed entry into it. Far from teaching there are “many ways that lead to heaven and everyone must find their own way to God”, Jesus Christ said there is a narrow gate through which one must enter, and a difficult or confined way one must walk. Few find it. Few are willing to jettison sin for the disciple’s life of submission, sacrifice and service. In stunning contrast, the entrance is wide and the path is broad that leads to eternal destruction. The wages of sin is death, and many choose to travel the easy freeway of sin. The implication is clear: You are not on your way to heaven when you are walking the path of sin. Jesus is the only way to the Father (Jno. 14:6). He demands all your faith, all your obedience, all your love (Jno. 14:6; Lk. 9:23-24; Matt. 22:37). His gospel reveals the narrow gate and difficult way to eternal life. Which way are you traveling today?