Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Narrow Gate

“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and those who enter through it are many. How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few.” Matthew 7:13-14

Many, many years ago, before Korea was divided into North and South, a theological professor from Yale visited a country church in a rural Korean village. He had an interpreter with him. But when he began by saying, “All thought is divided into two categories, the concrete and the abstract,” the interpreter made a quick decision. 

The small congregation was composed of barefoot schoolboys and toothless grandmothers all eager to hear what this man from far away had to say. The interpreter began his own sermon, “Dear friends,” he said, “I have come all the way from America to tell you about the Lord Jesus Christ.” From that point on, the sermon was firmly in the interpreter’s hands (Samuel Moffet, Christianity Today [11/14/94], p. 55).

I am sure the Koreans profited more from the simple sharing of the interpreter rather than if the interpreter used the high falutin’ words of the esteemed theology professor from Yale. God is not distant and Jesus used stories that his listeners would be very familiar with, shepherds and sheep, vineyards, masters and workers, etc. In the gospel of St. Matthew, Jesus speaks of a narrow gate and another gate which is wide. We should choose to go through the narrow gate, not the gate which leads to destruction. The meaning is fairly simple. Fewer people will choose the narrow gate which is the way of Jesus, the way of the humble, generous servant full of faith who seeks not his advantage but for others’ good. More people would rather live their life their own way, choosing worldly pleasures, putting their personal interests first, and relegating God on the side. 

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:^) Patsy