THE NARROW GATE OF THE CROSS

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“Some who call themselves ‘Christian’ in fact have never taken up their crosses. Being ignorant of the experience of self–execution, of self–denial, they are of necessity strangers to Christ. Our Lord Himself intended His illustration and His demand to deepen alarm in such individuals…Without a cross there is no following Christ! And without following Christ there is no life at all! An impression has been given that many enter life through a wide gate of believing on Jesus. Then a few go through the narrow gate of the cross for deeper spiritual service. On the contrary, the broad way without self–denial leads to destruction. All who are saved have entered the fraternity of the cross.”

—Walter Chantry

Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

Matthew 7:21-23 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Luke 14:27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.

 

THE NARROW WAY OR THE BROAD WAY?

Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Let’s look at the verses and see what it says. There are two gates—the strait gate and the wide gate. The strait gate is narrow which leadeth unto life and only a few people will find it and enter in. The wide gate is broad which leadeth to destruction and many people will enter in and go through that gate.

The strait gate is the way to life (heaven) and it is a difficult path to follow. Why? Because it is filled with many struggles of temptations, persecutions, afflictions, obedience to Christ, infirmities, self denial, reproaches, separation from the world, loneliness, trials and tribulations, humility, and more. A remnant few will find and enter the narrow way of life because of the sacrifice and suffering that goes along with it.

Titus 2:11-12 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

2 Corinthians 4:8-9 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

Mark 8:34-35 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.

The wide gate is the way to destruction (hell) and it is an easy path to follow. It is filled with worldly pleasures and self indulgence, pride of life, lusts of the flesh and eyes, fun and entertainment, all forms of idolatry, fornication and adultery, false religions, friendship with the world, tolerance for every sin, and more. Many people are on the broad way of life because it is fun and attractive, full of the pleasures of the world.

Proverbs 27:20 Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied.

1 John 2:15-16 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Mark 8:36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Eternal life or eternal destruction– which gate will you enter in?

Luke 13:23-24 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.