Summary: Studies in the Sermon on the Mount about the two ways
Title: The Two Ways
Theme: To help people to understand the two ways of life.
Text: Matthew 7:13-14
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. (Matthew 7:13-14 AV)
For the rest of the sermon on the mount Jesus deals in twos. The narrow way and the broad way. The good prophets and the false prophets. The saved and the unsaved. The wise and the foolish builder.
I believe that he is trying to make a clear distinction between what it means to be a Christian and not. Sometimes it is easy to gray the areas of Christianity. Especially when dealing with ones convictions. But many times in scripture Jesus will come and clear it up.
For centuries people have been tempted by “the other way”. In their mind they have convinced themselves that there is another way to heaven. That God would never say that there is just one way.
This is what Adam & Eve dealt with. Was there another way other than what God was telling them? Although he told them not to eat of the forbidden fruit surely he was not being honest. Is there something that they are missing by following such a narrow strict code?
My desire here tonight is to convince you that there is only one way to heaven but many ways to destruction. There are so many people who are deceived into believing that there are many ways to heaven. They are convinced that their religion or religious duties will take them there if they only follow a strict code of conduct.
Maybe some even here tonight are not convinced of the one way to heaven. I dare say that some amoung us has not been convinced that only by belief and trust in Christ will salvation come.
Because even amoung church attendees we find many who adhere to a certain believe system. People who have convinced themselves that if they are a good enough person and do enough for the church even attend church once and a while that this will keep them out of hell.
But if there is anything we see from this passage that is this is a false assumption.
There are only two religions in the world-that which has emanated from the heart of man, and that which has come out of the heart of God. The one is only an imagination, the other is a revelation. In these verses we notice two gates, two ways, two companies, and two ends.
Let us pay close attention to the two ways
I. The way into life
What does life mean? “The gate” suggests the idea of a city, a place of safety, fellowship, and plenty. The life which is in Christ is a life of –
1. Safety from sin and wrath
2. Fellowship with God
3. Satisfaction in the fulness of God
There must be a passing from death into life
A. It is an Open way
It may be strait, but, thank God it is not shut. “Behold, I have set before thee an open door” (Revelation 3:8). This way was closed up by sin, and fenced in by the Law. Christ opened it through the bearing our sins and becoming obedient unto death. It is a new and living way consecrated (set apart) for us. There are no back doors into the kingdom of God.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6 AV)
B. It is a Narrow Way
“Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way.” Perhaps the gate on the side-walk may be referred to, where even camels were sometimes dragged through after stripping them of everything. Men needs a stripping to enter here. Self-righteousness is not admitted. This gate is as narrow as the new birth. This straitness is not with God, but in man’s utter unfitness. If the way be narrow it leads to a large place.
C. It is the Way of the Few
“Few there be that find it.” There are few on it, because many shun it, preferring the darkness to the light, because their deeds are evil. Some put off, others hope to stumble into it by chance. This is no chance work. “Strive to enter.” “Ye shall find Me when ye shall seek Me with all your heart.” (Matthew 6:33)
II. The way of destruction
The word “destruction” here means “loss”, and is awfully significant. It is the loss of that which alone can save and satisfy. Like a watch losing its mainspring, like a plant losing the earth from its roots, a man losing all his privileges and hopes.