Sobering Thoughts 12

Mat 7:13 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. 14 “For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.

Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’ 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. 26 “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 “The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell– and great was its fall.”

There are very many in the world who are almost and yet but almost Christians…A second proof of it is that of the parable of the virgins in St. Matthew. See what a progress they make, how far they go in a profession of Christ.

The reason that people must go through the narrow gate is because of three things. One, the gate is wide that leads to destruction. Two, the way is broad that leads to destruction. Three, there are many who enter through that wide gate. (from Sobering Thoughts 10)

The way to life is through a narrow gate, even a very narrow gate. There is no room for a person to enter that gate with pride and self, or with love of the world hidden in that heart. This does not mean that a person is perfect, but simply that God has broken that heart until it wants nothing of self, pride, and the world when it enters that narrow gate. Later on, however, the person will fight those things as God shows the heart deeper levels of pride and self, but that inwardly taught heart will fight and claw against those things as the Lord humbles it more and more.

Not only does the heart have many sinful and deceitful things standing against it to deceive it, the heart has many religious things that are deceitful as well. There are many pastors, theologians, and apparently well-meaning people who are so willing to stretch the gate as wide as needed for others to enter (they think). Not only are they willing to stretch the gate wide to allow more and more people to enter, they are also willing to make the narrow path that Jesus speaks about very wide. As one man said about various psychologists and theories of psychology, if you keep looking you will find one that you like. This is what appears to be true in the modern United States of America. Not only are people deluded enough to think that there is freedom of religion in the States, they believe that they are free before God to sincerely practice the theology and religion of their own choice. In other words, there are many, many broad roads out there for people to be deceived by.

There are broad roads that are filled with legalism and very strict moralists, but those people have yet to understand that they have broadened the road to make room for their self-efforts. The broad roads are filled with those who have made it through the wide gate (even if they think it was narrow and costly) with their pride and self still intact. Oh yes, the self is like a chameleon and will change itself and take on the glittering colors of various theologies and various moralities, but that ole self is still there and it has adapted to the theology and the morality of those around it. Oh how beautiful it looks in its own sight, but the devil appears as an angel of light as well.

The true gate and the true road that lead to life is a narrow one. It is not narrow according to the dimensions (so to speak) that men measure with, it is narrow in precisely the way God has measured. Many want to broaden the path to allow for worldly pleasures, but many want to make the path very narrow in their own way of measuring with their theology and their morality. Jesus spoke with clarity when He said that those who were poor in spirit were those who were blessed. The narrow gate and the narrow path are for those without any righteousness of their own and yet at the same time they are not living in open sin and are not pursuing sin. The narrow path has many ways to broaden it on either side. Christ alone and His free-grace alone is the narrow gate and the narrow path.

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