Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.
Jesus said unto them “Strive to enter through the narrow gate”. The English word strive means to make much effort to achieve something. We only make effort to achieve something we have recognized is of great value.
In our text today Jesus refers to the path in entering the kingdom of heaven as narrow. A path which has few people on it in contrast to the wider path which leads to destruction ( Matthew 7:13-14).
When asked how many people will make it into heaven, he advised them to strive to make it into the narrow gate.
Striving to enter through the narrow gate is determining to carry the cross of Jesus daily. It is surrendering totally to his will. On the path leading to the narrow gate we may find rejection from friends, we may be lonely, we may be mocked. But the treasure we see ahead and the encouragement of the Holy Spirit is enough to keep us going. The Apostle Paul said for the glory that was set before the Lord, he endured the cross.
Jesus gave us an example of walking through the narrow gate. He was chastised, mocked, spat on, He was beaten, He faced rejection, yet he endured because he understood the glory that was set before him (Hebrews 12:2). This same glory was the reason the Apostles endured when they faced diverse trials.
You have not been called into light to sleep on bed of roses on earth. You have been called to carry the cross of Christ. Since you are no longer of the world, be rest assured the world can never love you. You must endure the present sufferings of this world in other to enjoy the glory set aside for you.
Strive to enter through the narrow gate: as long as we are still on earth, wars are constantly waged against our souls, we must be determined to overcome the devil by standing firm. Destroying all demons of sins and oppression, holding on to the plow and never looking back.
By our strength we can do nothing, for this reason we must submit to the Holy Spirit in sincerity of heart and a will to change from glory to glory. The Holy Spirit is seeking a heart that is determined. Once your heart is determined to serve Jesus, the Holy Spirit steps in and leads you through the narrow gate.
Many times we struggle because we have not surrendered totally to Christ. We have not given him all. Paul said in Romans 8:38 “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[b] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.” Can you really say this of yourself? What can take you away from your promise to God? Do you say no to sex because you do not have an opportunity with a beautiful lady? Do you say no to stealing because you have not been tempted with large sum of money? God is always faithful to his promise of never leaving us, what about us…? is our promise to God based on circumstance?
Our repentance must be genuine, it must be whole, it must be in season and out of season. The Holy Spirit is there to walk you through the narrow gate, But you must be totally sold out for him.
Take sometime today to evaluate your life. Ask yourself these questions:
- What is my reason for following Jesus?
- Am i ready to die for Christ?
- Have i really given all to him?
Prayerfully ask the Holy Spirit to help you answer these questions. As he reveals to you areas you need to fix, pray to him for help. He is always ready to work with us.
The christian journey is a race: you must run with the mind of winning a price