“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.14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13-14, NKJV).
In the above passage, Jesus envisions man at the crossroads of life. Here, Jesus indicates there are two very basic choices—the broad and narrow way. Let’s consider the implications of the language of Jesus more closely and take His call to make the right choice seriously!
“Enter” implies deliberation. We have a choice in life. Will we enter the path where God Himself would guide us or will we make choices to do what and go where God forbids? We need to be deliberate about our choice. We need to choose with thought. Going down the wrong road can lead us into bad neighborhoods, dead ends and into fearful terrain. Choose with care.
“By the narrow gate” implies restriction. When a gate is narrow, you might have to squeeze through and make adjustments. Repentance, the call of Jesus to sinful man, also requires such changes. God’s restrictions are because God knows what is for our own good. He is our Creator and we need to trust His path is the best for us.
“Difficult is the way” implies self-discipline. Success often comes with self-discipline. The elite athlete has had to work out while others slept. The valedictorian studied while others partied. The CEO often worked while others were arriving late and leaving early. The Christian keeps walking with Christ while others wander off and fall away. It takes discipline to follow Jesus, the Way (John 14:6).
“Which leads to life” implies the ultimate destination. The “broad way” allows us to be carefree and is the path of least resistance, but its destination is a fiery crash into a brick wall of destruction. Living the path of God is like climbing a steep, rocky terrain which leads to a beautiful view at the top of the mountain. The hike may be tough, but you will be smiling when you stand at the top victorious. This is a matter of life and death. So, keep climbing. You haven’t reached the top yet.