NOW DEPARTING AT GATE NARROW
How narrow [is] the gate and having been constricted [is] the way which leads to the life, and few are the ones finding it! Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. Matthew7:14 Luke 13:24
NARROW PATH TAKES PLACE FROM THE INSIDE OUT - IT IS HERE YOU WILL FIND THE LORD
AND IT IS TO THIS THE LORD ASKS, WHAT WILL A MAN GIVE IN EXCHANGE FOR HIS SOUL?
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform [it] until the day of Jesus Christ: For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure. Phi 1:6 Phi 2:13
It is from these verses we understand that God is Sovereign and that He has purposed to carry out His will in our lives. That will, God's purpose, is embraced EXCLUSIVELY on the Narrow Way. And It is only when approach Him in true humility and have completely emptied ourselves of self that His will is revealed to us. The work from start to finish is His. Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but [how] to perform that which is good I find not.
The Lord makes it clear that there are but two paths in life yet only one of them leads to "the life". Jesus declares that He is the Way, The Truth, and The Life. Sincere as you may be in your endeavors, in the end you will find yourself to be sincerely wrong. The Sovereign Creator warns us; "Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not into the way of evil. Ponder the path of your feet, and all your ways will be established. Do not turn to the right hand nor to the left; remove your foot from evil." Pro 4:14 Pro 4:26,27.
The flesh will always try to lead us astray. No matter how determined or resolute we our in our thinking we cannot enter the path that leads to "the life" without the aide of the Almighty. Many people are trusting in their own wisdom to succeed even though the Scriptures warn us "that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps. And that there "is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof [are] the ways of death. " Pro 16:25 Jer 10:23
The path that leads to "the life" signifies a departure from the old way of living. We have as Romans 13:11 states, "Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts." But this does not come without a cost and great opposition.If we are going to enter the path to "the life" it is going to take great effort and thought. The phrase "strive to enter" in Luke 13 means to; to struggle, literally to compete for a prize. Figuratively it refers to contend with an adversary, or generally to endeavor, fight, or labor, to accomplish something.
We are on either one of two paths right now. The path that leads to "the life" or the path that leads to death and destruction. The path that leads to "the life", which is the less taken of the two, can only be entered and traveled by those who have already put their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Isaiah 26:2 says, "Open the gates, and the righteous nation shall enter in, keeping faithfulness. "
The path that leads to "the life" can not be attained through means of trickery or self sufficiency. Only when one has truly died to self and has trust solely in the sufficiency of Christ is this possible. Galatians 2:20 says; I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
In Romans 7:24,25 the Apostle Paul says, " O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin." And in 2Corinthians 3:5 he declares, "Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our [is] of God."
What path are you traversing today? Is it one of self reliance and vain glory? And how do you know if you are really on the path that leads to "the life" anyway? You can know for sure. For one thing the path that leads to the life is one of delf denial.
Matthew 10:38,39 "And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it." Have you lost you life? Have you died only to find you life is hid in Christ? The path to leads to "the life" we are told intersects the Kingdom of God. Whose Kingdom are you striving to promote and advance?
We must heed the Lords voice by striving to enter the Narrow Gate. To go against His advise is to subject ourselves to a life of futility. Job 12:24 declares, "He takes away the heart of the chief of the people of the land, and causes them to wander in a wilderness where there is no path." Such is the plight of those who would live life on their own terms.
The path that leads to the life may be one of great difficulty but it is where we will find our Lord waiting for us. It is here He has promised to meet with us in order that He may direct us. "And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This [is] the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Isaiah 30:21 Proverbs 3:5,6
And so we are encouraged, "to continue in the faith, realizing that it is through much tribulation that we will enter into the kingdom of God. Act 14:22 My brothers and Sisters take hope and be of good cheer, though you may be going through what appears to be the trial of your faith, yet like the Psalmist we also can declare with all confidence; "But as for me, how wonderful to be near God, to find protection with the Sovereign LORD." GNB Psa 73:28
The path that leads to "the life" is also one of true humility. "That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: For of him, and through him, and to him, [are] all things: to whom [be] glory for ever. Amen." 1Corinthians 1:29,30 Rom 11:36
SURRENDER IS A WORK OF GOD CARRIED OUT THROUGH THE POWER OF THE SPIRIT
BUT THE CHOICE MUST COME FROM US.
The path that leads to "the life" requires that we chose life over death. Death meaning life as we now know and have worked it. Death as in maintaining our own little empire. Death as in our effort to obtain and accumulate things. Death as in trusting in our selves. Death as in being concerned how people view us. Death as in living for our own wants and desires. True living is the life of self denial. This is the road to success. Deuteronomy 30:14 states, "But the word [is] very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it. 15 See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil; 19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, [that] I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live."
THINK ON THESE THING AND CHOSE LIFE!
For The Glory Of His Name
Whether By Life Or Death