Chris' Corner -- Sunday, September 26, 2021
Jesus told His disciples, there is only one narrow path that leads to spiritual life and eternity. This way is inclusive for the “few who find it.” It is exclusive to the many who choose to follow the broad way “that leads to destruction.”
From the Lord’s message Matthew 7:13, 14, this truth is not something most people want to hear. They reject the idea of one path leading to God and all others leading away from Him. History reveals this line of thinking is constantly expanding to a wider and broader point of view.
The language Jesus used, “narrow is the gate,” suggests some restrictions or obstacles standing close by. ”Difficult is the way” means “pressing upon” as grapes in a wine press. When we walk the narrow path, we can expect trouble, affliction, tribulation, and distress. It is no wonder the numbers are small for those who choose to spend their lives this way.
People would much rather travel the more popular road of convenience and ease. The broad way requires no discipline, knowledge, or forethought. So many are going in that direction without even realizing it. For some, the only effort they seem to be willing to make is to fight against those on the other path—the restricted, narrow one. This criticism is attractive to those who insist on walking away from God and on to their own destruction.
We might think that way would be getting crowded, but theirs still plenty of room for more. However, with the growing numbers of those in error, it is becoming more challenging to reach them and help them to turn around or prevent others from going in that direction.
Just this week, a good friend of ours told us their preacher (of the church of Christ) admitted he no longer believed baptism was necessary for salvation. It’s hard for us to believe this is one of the more prominent issues in congregations today. Some big-name preachers have been very persuasive in convincing those of the “strait and narrow way” to reject the plain truths of God’s Word and change directions.
Paul said, “Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves” (Acts 20:30).
The words of Jesus that follow in this context of Matthew 7:13, 14 should not go unnoticed. “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves” (Matthew 7:15). False teachers who have entered the wide gate and broad way are very diligent in drawing others to travel down the road to destruction with them. No matter what the erring may say about many paths leading to salvation, Jesus said, there is only one.
When Jesus was preparing His disciples for His journey back to heaven, He told them He would get everything ready for them to come and live with Him there. He said, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.” Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:3–6).