Not So Random Thoughts 27

Matthew 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. 15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 “You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 “So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 “A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 “So then, you will know them by their fruits. 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.’

The narrow gate is quite narrow and will not allow any false gospel to be a means of entering it. The narrow gate was built by God and shut by God and no one can open that gate and go through but those He has prepared to do so. While this may sound odd to some, that is no argument against the truth of it. The gate is not there for people to walk in and out of as they please. The gate is not there for people to make up their own gate to enter. The gate is not there for just any theological preference to walk through. The gate is not there to allow any proud heart to enter. Jesus told us that the gate is narrow that leads to life and we can are safe in knowing that He (Truth incarnate) meant what He said. Jesus said that the gate was narrow and so the gate is narrow.

In the modern day people think we are to be tolerant and open to many views of the Gospel. However, it is far safer to listen to Jesus and Paul (and the other apostles). Jesus is the only sacrifice for sins and the only Mediator. It is only the Lord Jesus who can give a perfect righteousness as a free gift. It is only the Lord Jesus who can send the Holy Spirit who can regenerate souls and make them new in the new birth. Paul told us with great clarity that anyone who preached a different gospel (which was no real gospel at all) was to be accursed. Yet it is so hard for us to think that way when we like the preacher. It is so hard to think that way when the preacher is nice, is dressed well, speaks well, and is so charming. It is really hard to think that way when the preacher has a lot of knowledge and seems so concerned about people. But Jesus did not say that the gate was narrow but to the nice preachers. He did not say that the way was narrow for all but those who speak well. He said it was narrow.

When Jesus taught that the soul must be turned (passive) and the soul become like a child or it could not enter the kingdom (Matthew 18:1-4), we should not doubt this. He did not say that unless a person prays the prayer or walks an aisle that person will not enter. He did not say that unless a person practices certain forms of religion that person will not enter. He said that a person must be converted or turned and become like a child that person will not enter the kingdom. He then said that the person who was the most humble was the greatest in the kingdom. It is quite a narrow gate if a person must become like a child to enter. It is quite the narrow gate if someone other than the person must turn that person. It is quite a narrow gate when we see that the greatest person in the kingdom is the most humble. This should instruct us as to what it takes to enter the kingdom.

Habakkuk 2:4 tells us that soul of the proud is not right within him. We see that the Scriptures tell us that God is opposed to the proud and yet gives grace to the humble. The narrow gate, then, is so narrow that a person cannot enter with a proud heart. It is only the humble who can enter and it is not just any humility, but it is a humility that comes from the hand of God. It is a form of humility that at the root of it is a life from Christ. Pride is a puffing up of self, but humility is a letting out of that puffing up. It is a returning of the creature (not perfectly) to where it takes its proper place before the sovereign of the universe. It is a return of the proud and self-sufficient creature to the proper place for it and that is utter and total dependency upon God. That is quite a narrow gate and only God can create a new heart in the creature, break the pride of the creature, and deliver the creature from self which fits them to enter the gate where Christ is all.

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