You can choose to watch the video here or read the reflection below:
Day 9- Matt 7:13-29
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. 15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
28 When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, 29 because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.
We typically think of the small gate and narrow road as exclusive, but I want us to view it in light of everything Jesus has just said before this passage. To travel on a narrow road or go through a small gate requires more focus and more intent, and I believe that is what Jesus is referring to. It is not about a life lived saying the right things or even doing the right things. It is about living a life that is centred around and focused on God. We have seen Jesus give instruction to “ask, seek and knock”, we have heard about turning the other cheek, and about how we cannot serve two masters. This whole section of Matthew from chapter 5-7 are not instructions on what to do, they are directions on who to focus on. Jesus is again the example of all this. We see him through his life live out every single teaching he has given, and how was he able to do this? He was focused on the Father. It is about choosing a path that is not easy, it will require a lot of sacrifices. But it is greater and better than anything else we could hope for. So, let us not take the easy and broad path, but let us fix our eyes on Jesus and walk through the small gate on the narrow path that gives life.