Thursday, November 30, 2006


Matthew 7:13 The Two Ways.

“Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. 14 How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it.”

Chuck Swindoll, in his book, Strike The Original Match, tells of a fellow who fell in love with an
opera singer. He hardly knew her, since his only view of the singer was through binoculars – from the third balcony. But he was convinced he could live 'happily ever after' married to a voice like that. He scarcely noticed she was considerably older than he. Nor did he care that she walked with a limp. Her mezzo-soprano voice would take them through whatever might come. After a whirlwind romance and a hurry-up ceremony, they were off for their honeymoon together. She began to prepare for their first night together. As he watched, his chin dropped to his chest. She plucked out her glass eye and plopped it into a container on the nightstand. She pulled off her wig, ripped off her false eyelashes, yanked out her dentures, unstrapped her artificial leg, and smiled at him as she slipped off her glasses that hid her hearing aid. Stunned and horrified, he gasped, "For goodness sake, women, sing, sing, SING!

Some choices are certainly more important than others. Some choices change your life forever. And every day in our society people make choices that not only change their earthly lives, but also change their eternal destinies.
In the classic Alice in Wonderland, Alice comes to a crossroad and asks the guide which way she should go. The guide asks her, “Where are you going?” Alice replies, “I don’t know where I am going.” The guide then responds, “Well, if you don’t know where you are going, it doesn’t matter which road you take.”
Where you wind up depends on which road you take! In other words, you cannot go south from here and expect to go to Brisbane. You can not go east from here and wind up at the Wallsend. I realize you could do this if you were to circumnavigate the globe, but using the roads which are in place now, it would be absolutely impossible for you to do that. Just as this is true in the physical realm, it is also true in the spiritual realm.
Where you wind up in eternity will be determined by the road you take here on earth. It is impossible to take the wrong road and go to Heaven, and it is impossible to take the Heavenly road and go to Hell. What you do while in this world will determine forever, where you spend your forever.
Our world is faced with the question of eternal life. If there is a Heaven and a Hell, what are we to do about it? After concluding that there is a Heaven and a Hell, the next question is - "How does one get there?" What is the road to Heaven? What is the road to Hell?
Billy Graham was interviewed once with Australian television interviewer Mike Willessee.
MW “We’re all headed to the same place, just on different roads!”
BG “ That’s not what Christ says, John 14:6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
MW “You are divisive! You divide people!”
BG “I don’t divide people. God does. Saved and unsaved!”
There are the saints and the aints.
The saints have received Jesus, the aints have not received Him.

1. You Have A Difficulty To Face
A frank statement of the hardships and difficulties involved in a course of conduct does not seem a very likely way to induce men to adopt it, but it often proves so. There is something in human nature which responds to the bracing tonic of the exhortation: ‘By doing thus you will have to face many hardships and many difficulties which you may avoid by leaving it alone; but do it, because it is best in the long run, being right from the beginning.’ So the story of the martyrs’ fires has lighted many a man to the faith for which the martyr was burned.
A. There Is A Narrow Gate Of Concentration
When you come through a turnstile, you come alone and cannot carry baggage
with you. You must strip off everything that’s surplus. Story of butterfly struggling out of cocoon.
The narrow gate is a tight squeeze.
There can only be one goal, to get right with God.
I have met a lot of people who have become “Christians” for all the wrong reasons. In the end there is only one reason to become a Christian: to get right with God.
B. There Is A Difficult Road Of Consecration
Clearly the narrow way is a different way. Its Different to that of most people in our world.
Its different in its lifestyle.
Have you been considered narrow?
Peter spelled this out succintly
! Petr 4:2 live the remaining time in the flesh, no longer for human desires, but for God’s will. 3 For there has already been enough time spent in doing the will of the pagans: carrying on in unrestrained behavior, evil desires, drunkenness, orgies, carousing, and lawless idolatry. 4 In regard to this, they are surprised that you don’t plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation—and they slander you.
And they do!
Its An Individual Journey
We have to go in one by one. But we have God.
We have to go along through a difficult way, but we have a guide.
In his poem The Ways, John Oxenham, the English poet , wrote:
To every man there openeth A Way, and Ways, and a Way,
And the High Soul climbs the High Way, And the Low Soul gropes the Low,
And in between, on the misty flats, The rest drift to and fro.
But to every man there openeth A High Way and a Low,
And every man decideth The Way his soul shall go.

2. You Have A Destiny To Find
"God hath set eternity in our hearts" — that innate, instinctive consciousness that Longfellow glimpsed when he wrote, "Life is real, life is earnest And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou art to dust returnest Was not spoken of the soul."
From the most primitive to the most cultured of the human race there has been felt the inherent realisation that this life is only the doorway to a larger experience. Victor Hugo eloquently and logically interpreted his own great urge towards the immortal realities in these mem­orable words, "I feel in myself the future life. I am rising, I know, towards the shy. The sunshine is over my head. Heaven lights me with the reflection of un­known worlds. You say the soul is nothing but the result of bodily powers; why then is my soul the more luminous when my bodily powers begin to fail? Winter is on my head and eternal spring is in my heart. The nearer I approach the end, the plainer I hear around me the im­mortal symphonies of the worlds which invite me. It is marvellous yet simple. It is a fairy-tale and it is history. For half a century ^ have been writing my thoughts in prose, verse, history, philosophy, drama, romance, tradi­tion, satire, ode, song—I have tried all. But I feel that I have not said a thousandth part of what is in me. When I go down to the grave I can say like so many others, "I have finished my days work"—but I cannot say, "I have finished my life." My day's work will begin the next morning. The tomb is not a blind alley. It is a thoroughfare. It closes in the twilight to open in the dawn."
Hugo expresses what is in all our souls. Within the walls of our decaying physical abode there dwells an undying guest, call it the ego, the personality, the soul, or what you will. That is why Jesus said, "Pear not them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do." The undying spirit is untouched by the hurts that wound the body. God hath set eternity in our hearts. I want to sug­gest, then, that we live in the consciousness of the great­ness of our destiny, and that we prevent it from becom­ing just a blind groping in the dark. How may we do this? Jesus Christ is the answer.
2 destinies destruction and life.
There Is A Place Called Hell - Jesus tells us here that the broad road leads to "destruction." When we think of something being destroyed, we usually think about something be annihilated and forever done away with. This word, however, refers to "loss". It speaks of total and absolute ruin. In all honesty, it refers to loss one suffers in the fires of Hell. My friends, the broad road ends in Hell. Every person who chooses the broad way will eventually find themselves in the fires of Hell. That, to me, is the most awful thought my mind ever tried to understand. What makes it so terrible is that some of you are headed there right now! Allow me to give you a little insight into this place where the broad way ends.
1. Unquenchable fire - Mark 9:43; Luke 16:24
2. Memory and Remorse - Luke 16:25; 27-28
3. Unsatisfied Thirst - Luke 16:24-25
4. Frustration and Anger - Luke 13:28; Matt. 24:51
5. Unspeakable Pain and Misery - Luke 16:24-26; Rev. 14:10-11
6. Eternal Separation - Rev. 21:8; 2 Thes. 1:9
7. Undiluted Wrath - Rev. 20:15 (Ill. There will be no more mercy or respite. Hell will be eternally real and eternally awful.)
Regardless of what men think, Hell is real and every second lost souls drop off into the searing heat of that horrible place. No matter how I tried, I could never adequately describe Hell, but if I were to be able to exhaust all the vocabulary of English and paint word pictures that conveyed the truth of that place the half would be told as to the horror that awaits everyone headed to the land of the damned. A place from which there will never be deliverance. A place to which you will surely go if you choose to follow the broad and easy road through life. Where will you end up?
B. There Is A Place Called Heaven - Just as the broad road has its destination, the narrow way does too. This road doesn't end in Hell, but it ends in Heaven above. Jesus promised those who would follow this way life. Not just life down here, but everlasting, glorious life in the realms of light above this wicked, perishing world. If Hell is a place of horror, pain, separation and suffering, then Heaven is a place of joy, rest, peace, unspeakable beauty and glory. Everything that Hell isn't Heaven is! Just a brief glimpse at the glories of that city tell me that that's where I want to end up. Consider these truths about that splendid place.
1. No Tears, pain, sorrow, death, etc - Rev. 21:4
2. No Sin - Rev. 21:8
3. No Night - Rev. 21:25
4. No Curse - Rev. 22:3
5. With God and Jesus - Rev. 21:3; 22-23; 22:4
6. A Glorious City - Rev. 21:11-24
7. Glories beyond description and beyond the ability of man to comprehend and understand - 1 Cor. 2:9.
William Hauptman writes: "My brother lived in Wichita Falls, and when he saw the tornado coming, he threw his family into the car and took off. This was not a good idea, but my brother was already a storm chaser, and this was the first thought that came into his head. The tornado followed him all the way across town. What he remembers most clearly are the people who were not seeking shelter. As he passed a shopping mall, he saw scores of people standing in the parking lot, watching the tornado approach. He met other cars and blinked his lights at them -they kept driving right into the funnel. He passed people mowing their lawns, painting their houses, going about their business with death right on top of them."
Prov.14:12 says, "There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death."

C. An Individual Judgement
Sir Thomas Smith 1577 secretary of State to Queen Elizabeth 1 Dying words “it is a matter of lamentation that men know not for what end they were born into the world, until they are ready to go out of it.”

3. You Have A Decision To Face
No one enters this gate by accident. Jesus said in Luke 13:24, "Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able."
You Are Free To Decide “enter”
God’s invitation is open.
Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
Isa 55:1 Come, everyone who is thirsty, come to the waters;and you without money, come, buy, and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost! 2 Why do you spend money on what is not food, and your wages on what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and you will enjoy the choicest of foods.3 Pay attention and come to Me; listen, so that you will live.
Matt 11:28 “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
Rev 22:17 Both the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” Anyone who hears should say, “Come!” And the one who is thirsty should come. Whoever desires should take the living water as a gift.
You Are Forced To Decide
You are free to decide, but You are not free not to decide. Pilate’s indecision, washing hands and walking away, was a decision. Not to decide is to decide! There is no neutrality on this issue.
You Have Fruits From your Decision
You are free to decide, but you are not free to choose the consequences of your decision. You are free to jump out a window of a high rise building, but you are not free to choose whether you’ll get splattered on the ground or not. Once you make your decision there are consequences!
I recently had email contact from a 26 year old muslim fellow who was ready to become a Christian. An Iraqui. Said he was worried about going to church in Syria because that would mean a death sentence for him. He was worried about becoming a Christian. His choice has real consequences.
So does yours.
You are free not to choose Christ, but there are consequences to that decision. The consequences are eternal Acts 4:12 There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to people by which we must be saved.”
You have An Individual Choice
Its your decision! John 6:37 Everyone the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will never cast out.
There Are Two Possible Directions In Life; the narrow and difficult, or broad and easy.
There Are Two Possible Destinations In Eternity : you may go to destruction or you may have life?
It finally is all about Jesus. What will you do with Jesus who died to be your Saviour and who has been raised to be your Lord and friend.
“There is a line by us unseen that crosses every path,
A line that marks the boundary between God’s mercy and His wrath.”

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