Just How Narrow is the Narrow Door?
TRUTH is one thing that is avoided by many, in fact I would go as far as to say by all. We all shy away from speaking truth and accepting truth. However, it is the only thing in this world that can break the yokes and bonds of man and free him from them.
We find most times we tend to deal complacently with ourselves in terms of our moral failures, getting easily defensive and offended when corrected.
I have been doing a small survey on people’s views on weighing the gravity of sin. And I have found that, for the majority, telling small lies in comparison with committing murder or any other heinous crimes are not weighed the same.
In fact, the liar gets away with his sin but the murderer must pay. The argument being, that a small lie does not injure somebody else as much as murder would.
This goes to show that even man is incapable of executing perfect justice. However, God is perfectly just and perfectly merciful. He is able to judge perfectly. It does not matter the magnitude of sin. In God’s eyes, sin, no matter how big or small the sin is, it is still sin regardless. And we, therefore, recognizing the holiness of God, know that no sin can dwell in His presence. And He MUST judge all sin, for in Him dwells all TRUTH.
Thus, how can we approach God seeing that we are bombarded with sin, left, right and center? How can we dwell in the presence of the LORD in such circumstances?
If we review the sacrificial system in the Old Testament, we find two interesting things:
✓God established it as a way of covering of sin. However, this covenant was mainly based upon the faithfulness of man toward God – of which man failed.
✓The whole system pointed to one ultimate sacrifice that would be made once and for all, for the propitiation of sins for all who would believe.
God made a new covenant not based on man’s faithfulness but on His faithfulness; a covenant that was not possible to fail.
For God unlike man, is faithful and cannot disown Himself. The new covenant was not based on our own works of salvation but on the grace of God. However, this covenant just like the old one, is extremely narrow.
Now, in as much as we all know about the love and grace of God, I fear as well we neglect the most crucial aspects of understanding God, which we can only receive by having the knowledge of God, through seeking Him.
Hosea 6:6 For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.
For if we searched for God with all our hearts, we would find treasures of the kingdom of God in His word that are beyond human understanding; treasures only revealed by the Holy Spirit of God.
When Jesus spoke to the multitudes in His time, He made some bold and radical statements that anyone who reads them ought to meditate upon them, interrogate them and ultimately make the choice of whether, He was a liar or meant exactly what He said.
One time, He went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem.
Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And He said unto them, strive to enter in at the strait (narrow) gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. Luke 13:23-24
As discussed in a previous blog post, the terms of God were, “I will meet all humanity at the cross.”
And Jesus said, I AM THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE and no man cometh to the Father but by Me.
Now, here we find we have a bit of an obstacle, because that one statement makes the road extremely narrow. How about the many religions in the world? What about religious freedoms and beliefs? What about cohesion and unity? What about uniting nations and world wide peace? Wouldn’t be Jesus simply saying, I am an exception and the only true way?
Jesus Christ —The Stumbling Block
And here is where — just like in His day— most people docked their boats, and abandoned their nets. This is why the gospel of Christ is an offence to many, a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the gentile nations.
Unto you therefore which believe He is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the Word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
The multitude reject the gospel of Christ and the undecided just assume it. For it is not a message of uniting people together under one umbrella. But a message of division.
Jesus Christ— The Narrow Door.
And any man who shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and believe in his heart that God raised Him from the dead, shall be saved.
Any man that shall follow Christ shall encounter persecution. Suppose a man/woman, boy/girl is raised in an unbelieving home turns to Christ, how difficult will be his/her journey. Jesus said:
For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. Matthew 10:35-36
Nevertheless, Jesus vowed, He would never leave nor forsake His disciples.
Now, personally I do not presume to understand all God’s mysteries but this one thing I know, there is no salvation outside of Christ.
And this applies to all humanity, regardless of color, race, religion, ethnicity or gender.
Many though, have a problem with this because they don’t believe that God could be that narrow, in terms of accepting all people as His children.
But God searches and examines the hearts of men, and a heart that seeks the Lord, despite what conditions and circumstances they have encountered, which family they have been raised in, He will bring them to the TRUTH of the full knowledge of the cross.
I firmly believe GOD will never allow anyone to perish who desires to know Him. That is why His love is long suffering, that is why He waits for all who are willing to come to Him, to make that choice and receive salvation.
I always like to use the example of the Ethiopian eunuch. Here is a man reading the scriptures in Gaza, trying to understand the meaning of what He is reading. And here too, we see God leading Philip— so as to use Him— to explain to this Ethiopian eunuch, this mystery he is trying to comprehend.
26 And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.
27 And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,
28 Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias (Isaiah) the prophet.
29 Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
30 And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
31 And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me?And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
32 The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened He not His mouth:
33 In His humiliation His judgment was taken away: and who shall declare His generation? for His life is taken from the earth.
34 And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
36 And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
38 And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
39 And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.
Jesus Christ is the narrow door and the only door. He stands at that door everyday knocking gently – for those who do not believe in Him, those who have fallen away from Him, those battling with sin, and those who are broken hearted… He stands knocking at the door of every single person’s heart.
It is my hope and prayer, that all men and women will open the door and strive to enter that narrow door. For a time is coming and is already upon us; when the hearts of men will wax cold and be too hardened to hear that gentle nudge by the Holy Spirit, and will fail to recognize the hour of their visitation.
Wishing you all a blessed week ahead.
May the Lord bless you and keep you and be gracious unto you. ~
Well written Shiko! May all who read believe and enter in the narrow Gate who is JESUS, the Savior of the world…