56 The Narrow PathPosted: April 2, 2013
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life and only a few find it. Matthew 7:13-14
Jesus is “the Way, the Truth and the Life”. John 14:6
The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul. He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:1-4
Jesus is the narrow path. How do we live under Jesus’ Lordship and authority? Matthew 7:12 gives a clue in this direction. “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”
When we try to earn God’s love, acceptance and approval, we will veer from the narrow path. At the same time, we disregard God when we use grace as an excuse to sin. “Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God…What shall we say, then? Shall we do on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?” (I Peter 2:16, Romans 6:1-2) Herein we see the two sides of the narrow path, namely, grace and obedience. In other words, one side is to receive grace and forgiveness as a gift, unmerited, undeserved and based solely on Who God is; the other side is to respect and revere God as Lord as shown by our obedience to Him.
If we are not trying to earn God’s approval, why obey? Because God is worthy of our obedience! Also, His love motivates our love in return. “We love because He first loved us.” (I John 4:19) Jesus parable in Luke 7:47 states, in essence, that those who are forgiven much love much. When we encounter God’s love for us, we naturally respond by loving Him back which leads us to obey. “If you love Me, you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15)
Trying to keep to the narrow road may seem like trying to keep rules which hold us in a double-bind. If this is true it would only add to our perfectionism. We need help to heal from perfectionism. Paul in Philippians 3:12-14 states, “Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Pressing on to know Jesus, my Lord and Savior,
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