3/14 Luke 13:24

24 "Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able."

Someone asked Jesus if many would be saved. It is still a hot topic today. Many reject Christianity because of the answer Jesus gave to this question. His answer began with our verse for today. Many will seek to enter the narrow door but will not be able. That will never be a popular answer. Man wants everyone to enter so that we can be sure that we will. Popular opinion rarely recognizes truth.

We know from the rest of Scripture that salvation is by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8-9). What does Jesus then mean by "strive"? And what is the narrow door? We can see in John's Gospel that Jesus referred to Himself as the door through which we must enter to be saved (John 10:9). How can we strive to enter into Jesus to be saved? Paul the apostle told Timothy to fight the good fight of faith and lay hold of eternal life (1 Timothy 6:12). Paul's words are very similar to what Jesus was saying in our passage for today.

While salvation is a free gift of God's grace that we receive by faith, we must exercise that faith through a great effort. It is a fight to leave the desires of the old nature and the selfishness that have enslaved us for so long and enter the door of unselfish love for God and our fellow man. Yielding to the life of Christ in us is not for wimpy, apathetic slackers. Jesus said we must force our way into the kingdom of heaven (Luke 16:16). We recognize that we cannot be good enough to earn salvation. However, once we recognize that salvation was earned for us, then we must strive to take hold of what is truly life (1 Timothy 6:19). We misdirect seekers when we tell them all they have to do is receive the free gift and they are set for eternity. Life in the Spirit is a spiritual battle.

Consider: For many readers, exercising one's faith day by day is a concept you may have never heard before. I encourage you to read the references above, along with Ephesians 6:10-18 and Matthew 25:31-46. Do-nothing Christianity is not the life of the redeemed.