Google+ 11/05/12 The Narrow Way

Matthew 7:13-14

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. 

Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life,

and there are few who find it. 

 

For the last 17 years, I have faithfully read through the Bible each year.  I am not boasting.  I tell you this because in all those years of reading, along with leading worship virtually every Sunday during this time frame, it was not until today that The Holy Spirit imprinted this Scripture on my heart and showed me how vastly important these two verses can be in our lives.  I read through the Bible each year as God teaches me something new each time.  Do you ever feel as a Christian that you are in a boat alone, paddling as fast as you can and not seeing anyone else along the way?  If so, take great comfort in this passage of scripture.  Matthew explains that it is going to be a lonely ride.  After all, he states that the narrow way is the only way to go, but few find it.  This brings up an age-old question about everyone's salvation.  The Bible is full of references where God's people are invited to accept Jesus Christ as the answer, the one true path to the throne room of God.  What we Christians often miss are all the Biblical references to the fact that there are few that actually accept the offer.  This fact is really hard to believe, isn't it?  While God wants everyone to live their lives for Jesus, few choose that path.  Matthew tells us why.  The narrow gate is difficult.  The wide gate leads us to destruction.  No one in their right mind would intentionally be pursuing destruction for themselves or their family of God.  Matthew again clarifies for us by implying that the wide gate is so much easier and because so many are going that direction, we get caught up in the 70's saying and book by the same title "I'm Okay, You're Okay".  While we are not to judge, we are to discern and the Bible simply does not state that everybody is "Okay" no matter which path you take.  Those of you that are my age will remember the old joke about the guy who was driving the wrong way on a one-way street and when the police officer stopped him and said "Where are you going?" he answered "I don't know, but I must be late, because everyone is coming back!".  It is interesting that Matthew includes this instruction immediately before he warns in verses 15-20 of false prophets.  Choose the narrow path by accepting Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.  When you do this, Jesus becomes your personal advocate to God the Father.  The day you accept Christ, the Bible tells us that you become filled with the Holy Spirit.  That means we all become Pentecostal (this statement just made some of my very liturgical friends and colleagues nervous)!  This is what Jesus means when He says "I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one can come to the Father except through me".  Beware of those who wish to lead you down the wide path.  How can you tell?  Discern their intent.  Use the Scripture to judge the validity of their words and actions.  Using your "free will" that God gave you, choose wisely.  Matthew tells us the wide path will bring certain destruction.  Live in the light and choose the narrow path.  It is where Jesus will walk with you and show you His way.