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: 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 KJV
Every day we make decisions based on the choices we have before us. Do we want a chicken salad sandwich or a burger or salad or pizza? Do we take the north route or the south route that is more scenic? Do we wear this outfit or that one? Normal, everyday choices.
Jesus gave us a choice when He spoke of the two gates, the wide gate and the narrow gate. The choice He gives is a life choice. It is a decision of who we will follow, which gate we will choose.
There was a time when I was straddling and dangling my feet on each side of the “indecision fence,” enjoying, or at least I thought I was enjoying, both the broad path and the narrow path. I found out that you cannot serve both God and the world.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Matthew 6:24
We may fool ourselves for awhile, but as I did, sooner or later, we need to make a decision.
As in other studies I have published, I like to use the King James Version, so if you have your own favourite version, please use it to read along with us.
Let’s look at the options we have.
Wide Gate and Broad Road
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: Matthew 7:13
First, Jesus mentioned the strait gate but then described the second gate that is wide leading to a broad road. This road has many attractions to allure people and there are many who are walking this road. It is a road of no restrictions and travelers have access to all lustful things, passions and unhealthy appetites for any kind of addictions and sinfulness.
On this road, travelers can do what is right in their sight, they can enjoy any kind of sin, they can walk down any side path to see what will satisfy them. Travelers on the broad road will find like minded people who enjoy their sin, share sin with and all who travel this road walk in evil as their deeds are evil. They plan and devise evil schemes. They practice lawlessness. They do not care who they hurt as they live only for themselves. Even unbelief in the Almighty God is a sin and those who do not believe in the Triune God are on this wide road.
Following the crowd that is going the wrong way leads to destruction and everyone should be cautious about considering this road.
Strait Gate and Narrow Road
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Matthew 7:14
It is good that Jesus gave us a choice. If the first option is a gate that leads to a path of destruction, then the second gate must have something better behind it. It is reassuring to know that it opens to a path that leads to life.
To enter through this gate, we must experience conversion and redemption. One cannot walk this path without first making a life altering decision of following after Christ and His righteousness. Entering through the gate is the beginning of a life of faith and requires godly living. We must put off the old carnal nature and put on the new nature that is clothed in righteousness. This means that we forsake all the desires we had for the old way of living, we let them go so we can give our full undivided attention to Christ Jesus.
The way is narrow and is protected by the commandments and instructions that guide and direct us in how we ought to live. Daily we must deny ourselves, forsake the old way of living, and though the way may be difficult at times, as we grow in our faith and understanding of the Word of God, the path will become more pleasant. Yes, we live under Grace but the narrow road is still a difficult road.
Because the gate is straight and the path is narrow, there are few that find this way. It is not a well traveled road as many pass right by it in pursuit of their passions. The few who do find this path and travel on it will be the few who find heaven as their reward. This may be a path that is hard to walk on at times but the eternal rewards are far worth the pain we endure to get there. We must persevere in prayer, persevere in living holy and blameless before God, persevere in running the race. This path is not an easy path to take, that is why there are few who find it. It is a path that leads to life and is well worth the pursuit.
Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. Luke 13:24
…choose this day whom ye will serve; … but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. based on Joshua 24:15
Do we choose the wide gate and broad road that leads to destruction or choose the strait gate and narrow road that leads to everlasting life?
…Come out from among them…be separate…put on the new nature…renew your thinking based on the Word of God…live holy and blameless…
The case is closed. My choice is to follow hard after God…is that your choice as well?
As always, I invite your thoughts and comments. I’d love to hear what you think about the two gates.