Advent Day 41 of 50: The Gate to Here
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14)
This passage is often misinterpreted by connecting it to some future existence, that is, to an afterlife. It is taught in a way to suggest that the “gate” leads to rewarded afterlife, let’s call it heaven. But today you have been through the Advent journey and are nearing the end of these lessons about Christ’s essential teachings. You are taking this passage in context of the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus has enacted the Kingdom of Heaven. Now you are listening carefully to what the Lord is saying here, as well as throughout the Sermon on the Mount, and you find that Jesus steers us to a life lived in harmony and purpose in the here and now. The warning in this passage is to avoid destruction which is the characteristic of a life lived without purpose, a life void of meaning.
The narrow gate, indeed, is a more difficult path, but it leads to life. Jesus tells us that he has come so that we “may have life and have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10)
We near the end of the Advent journey understanding that life finds meaning by the life we live, by good we do, and the love we share.
Let us pray, Lord Jesus Christ, you have given us the gift of life and the ability to share its goodness with our fellow man. Forgive me my sins so that I may forgive others. Let me enter my new life free from the weight of yesterday and allow me to build my life on a new and fresh foundation. Amen.
Cover: Fr. Vazken 2012