Friday, April 13, 2012

THE NARROW GATE LEADS TO WIDE LIFE

Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. For the gate is small , and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.

It says the way is narrow that leads to life. The church has misstepped due to this passage. We have formerly interpreted it to say the way is narrow which leads to narrowness. Communities are dotted with little groups called Church of Christ who represent a premier stance of narrowness.

Jesus is the narrow; he is the singular way to life....no others....no one else...no other doctrine....no other pattern. Jesus is the only gate to life.

Yet this life through the narrow gate is quite the opposite of narrow. It is wildly, uncontrollably, mysteriously, and unfathomably abundant. We enter through the one; not the several. God gives not options. Entrance is through Jesus or else there will be no entrance.

The narrow gate leads, though, to life!

If there would be any one quality the church should and could exude, would it not be what the narrow leads to....life? When guests are in our circle, do they experience life or narrow-mindedness? Are the children given us by God reared in life abundant or the fearful need to be narrow?

The narrow gate leads to freedom. Some self-appointed deputies (of which I was trained to be one) believe it our calling to monitor the straight and narrow path to the extent no one would call it abundant life.

It could be called abundant commitment. It could be called abundant awareness. And it could be called abundant duty. But....it would not be called abundant life.

Jesus came that we might have life. Our goal should be that our flocks learn all we can about the narrow gate as well a experience all we can of the wide and abundant life which would be reflective of resurrection power.

Yes! The narrow gate leads to wide life!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I grew up in the Church of Christ, absorbing a skewed concept that the "narrow gate" was actually through the front doors of the Church. (I honestly mean no disrespect here) But I never, ever experienced abundant life because life was all about The Church and nothing about The Man, Jesus.
Sadly, it wasn't until I was an adult, broken and fallen flat on my face, did I finally come to The Man Himself. The Church got me nowhere. The narrow-mindedness I had been taught as a child got me nowhere....it wasn't a gate, it was a complete dead-end. It took me many years to reconcile my upbringing with what Jesus was really all about. He is the antithesis of narrow-mindedness. My "conservative" background kept me from experiencing Him in His Fullness, but as the Holy Spirit gently asked me "What exactly is it about Me that strikes you as conservative?" He is Wonderfully, Abundantly WILD. I am so taken by Him I hardly know what to do.....I feel like a kid in a candy store these days.