Summary: The Sermon on the Mount is not just a nice collection ethical rules. There is a clear invitation for you to make the two most important decisions of your life. These are the decisions of a high impact Believer.
"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 NIV).
Throughout life we have to make a number of very important decisions. The Sermon on the Mount is not just a nice collection ethical rules. There is a clear invitation for you to make two decisions. First, what you are going to do with Jesus Christ? And second, if you choose to follow him, what kind of follower will you be?
Jesus starts by talking about two roads. There’s a small gate and a narrow road - and there’s a wide gate and a broad road.
(Source: The outline for the first half of this message is taken from "A Challenging Lifestyle" by Nicky Gumbel)
A) WILL YOU FOLLOW JESUS?
1. What’s the difference between the two roads?
a. The broad road
The broad road is clearly a place where there are no boundaries and you can do whatever you like. You don’t have to worry one iota about the standards that Jesus has just set out in the Sermon on the Mount.
But the problem with the broad road is that where there are no boundaries, people get hurt.
b. The narrow road
This is the road that Jesus has just outlined in the Sermon on the Mount. It’s a life surrounded by loving boundaries. Life on the narrow road is not just difficult, it’s actually impossible to live it without Jesus’ help and intervention in your life.
2. Where do the two roads lead?
a. The Broad Road
In v13, Jesus warns us that the broad road leads to “destruction.” Jesus says, if you want to live without his loving boundaries guiding your life you will be destroyed. Now, that’s not a threat, it’s a loving warning.
b. The Narrow Road
The destination for those who choose the narrow road is eternal life (v13).
3. Who is on the two roads?
a. The broad road
Sadly, the broad road with the wide gate has “many” (v13) people on it.
b. The narrow road.
Those who have the courage to stand for Jesus even against popular opinion; these are the people that Jesus says are on the narrow road.
4. How do I get into each gate?
If you’re on the broad road you don’t have to do anything in order to stay on it. But if you want to get off the broad road and enter a new life with Christ through the narrow gate – you must surrender your whole life to Jesus Christ.
Friends, this is the single most important question you could ever answer in your life.
B. WHAT KIND OF JESUS FOLLOWER WILL YOU BE?
The second most important question is this – what kind of Christ follower will you be?
a. Will you be a high impact Believer?
Why is this question so important? Because the broad road is packed with people who desperately need you to be a “high impact” – “salt and light” kind of Christian. The kind of Christian Jesus has been describing throughout the Sermon on the Mount.
Ephesians 5:1 says, – “Be imitators of God,” God is a high impact God. God is a missionary God. As the man Jesus Christ, God came to seek and to save what was lost. The Bible says that God wants you to be like that.
b. How do I know if I am a high impact Believer?
Answer this question, “Does Australind Baptist Church exist primarily to serve you, God’s children in this district – or does it exist to serve those who are not here yet – those on the broad road?”
How you answer that question will indicate whether or not you are a high impact Believer.
This church exists for both for those who are already here and for those who are not here yet – but a high impact believer will choose to serve those who are not here yet FIRST. Both groups get served, both get their needs met – but a high impact church will see to it that those people who are still on the “broad road” entering eternity through the “wide gate” – they will see to it that these ones get served FIRST. Yes, this can make life very inconvenient and uncomfortable; But Jesus didn’t have comfort on his mind when he said, “I send you out as sheep among wolves” (Matthew 10:16)
So church, this morning you have some decisions to make. They are the two most important decisions you will ever make in your life.
Will you follow Christ along the narrow road and enter eternity through the narrow gate? And if you have already made that first decision, now decide what kind of Believer will you be?