March Like Jesus
… Using the Narrow Gate
Scripture Reading: Matthew 7:7-14
Key Verse: Matthew 7:13
“You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way.
If we believe that the Bible is trustworthy and true, then our Key Verse for today ought to remind us NOT to look for the easiest path in life.
Our human tendency is to make our decisions based upon the smoothest and easiest way. That may work in some situations, but for spiritual and moral decisions it usually does not. To do the “right” things we usually must take the tougher path, the one that probably is a path of sacrifice.
Jesus never promised that following Him would give us the easiest life. He was quick to tell His followers their path is the “narrow” way. In this context “narrow” means hard to get on and tougher to walk through.
Our choice of paths is harder by the fact that we have a choice of paths. The “broad” path is easy, demanding little to no sacrifice.
Of course, the evil one blinds people to the horrible result of going the “easy” way, but this becomes clear only when it is too late to avoid the pain.
The word “only” shows that his this is non-negotiable: “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate”.
We may hope that there could be another way… an easier way, a gate through which does not demand so much sacrifice. However, down through history, Christ-followers have paid a heavy price to follow Jesus.
Even today, unnoticed by our world, about 100,000 Christians die every year because they refuse to deny their faith in Jesus (estimated by “The Center for the Study of Global Christianity of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary). I am challenged by these statistics to stand firm in my faith and trust God despite any negative circumstances I find myself in.
I want to rejoice always, not worry about anything, pray about everything, and rest in God’s peace (Philippians 4:4-7).
Jesus did not shy away from the realities of Hell. He understood that no one wanted to hear that Hell waits for those who reject Him. It may not seem like a loving thing to talk about, but how loving would it be to know the consequences of rejecting the Gospel but never tell anyone?
Jesus is sounding the alarm, in our verse for today that the “broad” way leads to Hell. Jesus describes Hell as being a place where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew13:42). Suddenly, choosing the sacrifices of taking the “narrow” way does not seem so bad!
Father, help me to have Your wisdom when presented with life choices, to choose Your way! Grant me strength to overcome the evil one’s temptations. In Jesus’s Name I pray, amen.