The Narrow Path

Rob Stroup
Written by Rob Stroup

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.

There has been confusion about these verses – do they teach about the way to heaven and hell? Does this teaching from the Sermon on the Mount mean that life choices are how God determines who has eternal life?

By meditating on the passage, it is clear that the narrow path or the broad path can be chosen by believers. Think about it. This statement was made in the midst of principles for sincerity in worship, kindness, and prayer. These are things that Jesus would teach to believers, not the unsaved. Also, we know that salvation is not based on our works, but on our belief in Jesus.

John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

Based on this truth about salvation, we can then understand that the two paths, one toward “life” and the other toward “destruction” are ways that we Christians choose to live our lives. It seems incomprehensible that a believer would choose a path that leads to destruction, but here Jesus states that more people choose that path than choose the path that leads to life! Is it true that most Christians are lackluster in their walk with God? Is it true that most believers spend most of their time in serving self? This is the broad path to destruction for a Christian! It is not an eternal damnation, but it is destructive. Consider the natural consequences of a selfish life – less friends, and less influence – is that not destructive? Contrast that with a Christ-like, giving life that results in greater impact and more friends! This is just one of the ways that choosing the more difficult, narrow path will result in life.

We could draw the same comparisons in many areas of our lives. Does immorality lead to destruction of a Christian home and does morality strengthen the ties between spouses? Which is the narrow path? Jesus knew that He was calling believers to choose a less traveled, more challenging lifestyle so He reminded us that this path leads to life – the wonderful, abundant life of a follower of Christ! In John 10:10 He states, I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

The message is clear: Most Christians will not make the more difficult choices and will suffer for it.  Christian, choose to live as Christ teaches! Though less popular and more challenging, walking in the narrow way will result in God’s blessing in your life.