Jesus traveled from town to town, teaching as he made his way again to Jerusalem.
Someone asked him, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” Here was his response:
Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading, “Sir, open the door for us.”
But he will answer, “I don’t know you or where you come from.”
Then you will say, “We ate and drank with you, and you taught in our streets.”
But he will reply, “I don’t know you or where you come from. Away from me, all you evildoers!”
There will be weeping there, and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but you yourselves thrown out. People will come from east and west and north and south, and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God. Indeed there are those who are last who will be first, and first who will be last.
Let’s look at our 2 BIG Questions:
1. Who exactly is Jesus?
Many in Jesus’ day believed that the entire nation of Israel would be saved, with the narrow exception of notorious sinners like tax collectors.
Jesus turned that expectation on its head.
First, as before, he proclaimed himself as “the narrow door” through whom people must pass to enter the Kingdom of God. Religious roots and rituals won’t get you in. Rather, it’s a real relationship with Jesus.
Then he blew their minds by proclaiming that not just Israel but people from all over the world — from “east and west and north and south” — will enter the Kingdom.
Last, he proclaimed that there are many who seem “last” on this planet will be “first” and many who are “first” will be “last.”
2. What exactly should we do?
It’s right there in the first sentence: “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door.” Over and over Jesus makes it clear that he’s the one and only way and that the door is only open for a limited time.
Take him at his word. Listen hard to him and follow him through the power of the Holy Spirit even if it costs you everything on this planet.
(Image credit: Shutterstock.com / sergeymansurov)