Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:1-2)

The Sermon on the Mount concludes with five contrasting images. The first one concerns the entry point for his Kingdom.

Jesus proclaims that the gate and road to life are narrow and that most people choose the wide path that leads to destruction. The choice is not simply between good and bad, but rather between life and death.

We would be mistaken to think that the door and the path represent religious rules. They do not. Rather, Jesus himself is the Gate (John 10:9) and the Way (John 14:6).

Christ is not telling us we must be more pious in order to be acceptable to God. Rather, he’s saying that he alone makes us righteous before God and that our relationship with him enables us to live lives that are pleasing to his Father.

Yes, the gate and the road are exceptionally narrow: Christ-wide, to be exact.

The world might criticize the apparent exclusivity of his claim, but Jesus lays down his life so that we might enter his Kingdom. His offer is infinitely generous and open to all. But this invitation to live forever will not last forever.

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