13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. – Matthew 7:13-14
There are many gates that lead to various paths of destruction.
Jesus is the only way out. There is no other. He is the gate. He is the only way that we can embark on a journey of life that leads us to the Kingdom of Heaven. It’s also important to know that Jesus has a strict and narrow way that He wants us to live.
So, there seem to be two core issues here.
First, we accept that this world is full of destruction and the only escape is Jesus.
Secondly, we understand that Jesus has standards that we are supposed to live by as we walk with Him in faith.
My personal experience make this difficult to write about because there is just so much to consider. This is my Christian walk in a nutshell, as is the case for many of us. There are many ways in which we can go astray from putting Jesus first as the only way to salvation. Then, once we accept Jesus as our savior, there are many who come in His name who would lead us astray. Many lead us astray with false teachings that mischaracterize God, the gospel, and the Christian experience.
It’s truly remarkable that any of us find the straight gate and narrow way. It is the grace of God.
The best thing I can think to say about this is to humbly seek Jesus in faith. If we recognize that we are lost and confused and if we truly want to know what is true, He will show us. At times, we might not like what we see, but if we wrestle with the truth in faith and continue seeking Jesus then He will make us strong as the Spirit of Truth works in us.
The manner in which He teaches us can vary for each individual, but the lessons we learn are the same in the end. We are learning how to be a son of God as we follow the life of the Son of God in faith, trusting in His forgiveness and relying on His Spirit to guide us and equip us along the way.
It’s important that we value the truth. Read 2 Thessalonians 2. If we do not love the truth, then this means we take pleasure in unrighteousness and God will allow us to be under strong delusions.
Many in this world are under strong delusions because they do not love truth.
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father but by me.”
Yet, even in seeking Jesus many things come against us as I experienced and as the Parable of the Sower describes (Matthew 13).
Despite it all, nothing can come between those who are chosen by the Father to be raised as sons of God through the adoption of Jesus Christ.
It is truly remarkable and although the process can be difficult, painful, and confusing at times, we will get to a place of being more established in the faith as we see Jesus working in our lives, showing us what His narrow way means, and changing us so that we can walk in Spirit with Him better overtime.
I apologize if I’m being too generic. Like I said, it gets complicated for me and I know that we all have our own experiences. It’s easy to point to the gate. It’s Jesus. Period. As for His narrow way, it can seem broad at times because He has a lot to say. Though, it isn’t really. The gospel is simple and as Jesus said, “my burden is easy and my yoke is light.” It’s this world that complicates things and our walk can get messy because we are flawed, but if we follow Him in faith, He will lead the way.
If we follow Him, we can expect to live like He did in some measure.
We should testify to the truth, even when the world hates the truth. We should use the gifts Jesus gives us by His Spirit to reach those who are spiritually blind, maimed, and enslaved to the destructive and deceitful ways of this world. We should submit our will to the will of Jesus, just as He submitted Himself to the Father. We should expect to be hated, maybe even killed. We can also expect to live forever despite it all, knowing that nothing can separate us from the love of God. If His grace is for us, nothing can come against us.
This article is part of a series that considers the Parables of Jesus. Right now, we are looking at the statements Jesus made during His Sermon on the Mount, to which He referenced in His Parable of the Building on Rock and Sand. Visit the link for quick access to all articles written within this series.
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