The narrow gate?
“Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able. Luke 13:24
Life? What does it truly mean to live a good life? What was God’s idea of a good life when He created people? Is it to work hard to accumulate things? Is it being entertained at every free minute? Is it having a family, working until you are 65 and retiring to live out the rest of your life in comfort and leisure? Well, none of these things are bad, and there certainly are worse ways to live out your days, but today’s text gives us some hints on God’s idea of living life to the fullest.
Jesus said “Enter by the narrow gate. It goes on to say the narrow gate is difficult but leads to life. So why is the narrow gate difficult? Well, first of all, if you picture an actual gate that is narrow, you could imagine that it would require you to unload anything that wasn’t actually part of you to get through it. You would have to put down things that were heavy and burdensome. In today’s world, you would have to enter on foot, not driving a vehicle through or bringing any of your possessions. Mostly, it is taking a path that is purposeful and planned out by the Creator Himself. Most people would follow the path of least resistance. It can seem easier to coast or drift through life without purposefully pointing your life in a direction of intentionality. Some would even purpose to pursue the things of this world that are fleeting and temporary but will dissolve away when they are done here.
I see this as a spiritual gate. Living your life growing your spirit person, that is what gets through the narrow gate. You can imagine in a spiritual sense of laying down your cares and burdens and trusting in the God of the universe to get you through. Notice that He is only interested in a relationship with you, not the things of this world. Of course, it is wise to properly maintain your physical body, but this is not what actually goes through the narrow gate. To truly live this life to the fullest, an individual must have a personal relationship and fellowship with the Father of love. The wide gate is for the masses which many can fit through all at once. Those headed toward this gate give no consideration to a personal relationship with the God of creation, only trying to get to “mine” first.
Today I would encourage you to take a look at which gate you are heading toward. Are you seeking out the precious personal time to fellowship and commune with your heavenly Father? Or are you with the masses trying to secure what is best for me and mine. Have you stored up for yourself treasures in this world, or do you place your treasure and resources in His kingdom where it cannot be eaten away by rust and moths? Decide today that you are going to start making eternal investments by helping others and using your resources to promote God’s agenda. Then spend time each day purposing to press into Him through the narrow gate of relationship and being an example of His love everywhere you go.
Today’s scripture reading: Luke 13:18-33
18 Then He said, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it?
19 It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a large tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches.”
20 And again He said, “To what shall I liken the kingdom of God?
21 It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened.”
22 And He went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem.
23 Then one said to Him, “Lord, are there few who are saved?” And He said to them,
24 “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.
25 When once the Master of the house has risen up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open for us,’ and He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know you, where you are from,’
26 then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets.’
27 But He will say, ‘I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.’
28 There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out.
29 They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit down in the kingdom of God.
30 And indeed there are last who will be first, and there are first who will be last.”
31 On that very day some Pharisees came, saying to Him, “Get out and depart from here, for Herod wants to kill You.”
32 And He said to them, “Go, tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.’
33 Nevertheless I must journey today, tomorrow, and the day following; for it cannot be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem.