The struggles the believer suffers against the flesh is a sign he is born again. Just like Paul, who had tremendous supernatural experiences, still had to fight the weakness of the flesh. That’s the true meaning of the narrow gate. We must press through it without any fleshly baggage. This is the unnecessary weight that cleverly clings to us; it entangles us on the other side, keeping us out of heaven. YAHSHUA said, I am the Door; anyone who enters in through Me will be saved. (John 10:9a). Many, expect to enter heaven through good deeds, others through the worship of false gods. But YAHSHUA assured here that the entrance to heaven is only through Him. He is the only One Who gave His life for the ransom of mankind. He constituted Himself as a gate to those who not only accept Him as Savior but who will have Him as their Master. Forsaking all to follow the Savior, weightless of all earthly things we can manage to go through the gate.
YAHSHUA said, whoever does not persevere and carry his own cross and follow Me cannot be My disciple. Self- denial is a requisite to be able to follow YAHSHUA. Man must lose sight of himself, his interests and the world. YAHSHUA gave the conditions to enter heaven: If any person wills to come after Me, let Him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever would preserve his life and save it will lose and destroy it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he will preserve and save it. For what does it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and ruins or forfeits himself? (Luke 9:23-25). We cannot carry our cross without first denying self. It is impossible to do so, just as it is impossible to enter the narrow gate with all our luggage. The flesh, and the soul apart from the new birth, are enemies of God, unless under the control of the Holy Spirit, they can never enter through the narrow gate. The believer, like an athlete who strain to get to the finishing line, must agonize to go through the narrow gate.
Our Savior left heaven, a perfect and holy place, to redeem man to Himself and to His Father. Here, He did not even have a place of His own, as He confirmed, Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head (Luke 9:58). If that was the case of our Lord, the Creator of living things, the Creator of the heaven and earth, and the Author of our faith, shouldn’t we also deny all earthly things for Him? He should be the priority in the life of a believer in every circumstance presented to him, even his family as important part of his life, as it should be, should never be before YAHSHUA. In a figure of speech, He said, If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother and his wife and children ad brothers and sisters and even his own life also –he cannot be My disciples (Luke 14:26). The point He is making here is that the love for God should be greater than that of the family. This too is necessary for us to be able to enter through the narrow gate.
Many are those who enter through the wide gate, YAHSHUA said. Naturally, it is comfortably easy. No denial of anything. One can enter loaded with their suitcases of worldly and fleshly pleasures. In the seemly preservation of their lives, they will lose it to eternal death. YAHSHUA warned about the danger of the wide gate saying, Enter through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and spacious and broad is the way that leads away to destruction, and many are those who are entering through it. But the gate is narrow and the way is straitened and compressed that lead away to life, and few are those who find it (Matt. 7:13-14). Life on earth is just but transitory. It is today and gone tomorrow. It is compared to the flowers of the field. It comes with uncertainty of its life’s endurance, and it is gone sometimes faster than it should. Moses so described: You turn man back to dust and corruption, and say, Return, O sons of the earthborn [to the earth]! In the morning it flourishes and springs up; in the evening it is mown down and withers… so teach us to number our days that we may get us a heart of wisdom (Ps. 90: 3,6,12). Meanwhile, life after death is eternal. The spirit of man never dies, but will meet his God either for eternal judgement or heaven, as the letter to the Hebrews said, and just as it is appointed for men once to die, and after that the judgment (Heb. 9: 27). Two gates have been available for men to choose to enter to eternity: narrow or wide gates. The narrow gate offers no room for world’s fat. It is compressed and hard to get through. Believers today must go through a spiritual diet to rid of all the flesh and world’s fats. The mega churches are filled with people worldly overweight, not being able to fit in the narrow gate. The pitiful thing about it is that they do not even know or perceive their spiritual status- far from God and missing all together the narrow gate.
When YAHSHUA called Lazarus forth to life, he came out in his burial cloths. “And out walked the man who had been dead, his hands and feet wrapped in burial cloths, and with a napkin bound around his face.” YAHSHUA then commanded them to free Lazarus up from those burial wrappings to let him go (John 11:44). That’s the condition of many who called themselves believers in YAHSHUA. They have been called from death, but remain wrapped up in their burial cloth, not being able to move about. They continue slaves of the world and of the flesh. The new birth must be followed by changes in one’s life, as proof of his new birth, then for sure the old things are gone, all is made new in the process of him being born again, otherwise, he will be left outside of the narrow gate, still enslaved by the flesh, wrapped in his old burial cloths. Not until all that is removed will he be free to enter the narrow gate and enjoy his new life in the Messiah, YAHSHUA.
Dead to the world, alive to Christ. For I am crucified with Christ, live not I but Christ lives in me, and the life I now live in the body I live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself up for me (Gal. 2:20). Not conforming to the things of the flesh neither to the world, one can enter the gate to heaven, that is, the narrow gate. The three steps to enter successfully through the narrow gate are (1) self-denial, (2) carrying of the cross- dying to self (3) follow YAHSHUA- obedience and submission. On which side of the gate are you today?
THINK ABOUT IT!