The way is narrow
(Greek stenos, meaning pinched and
difficult to navigate: strait). It takes sober judgment to find, enter and
remain in the narrow path. Read Proverbs 2:1-15. From who should you seek wisdom? What does the Lord’s wisdom teach you? Read Proverbs 1:23-33. What happens when you reject the wisdom of the Lord? Why do you think complacency is a factor in
straying from the narrow path (verse 32)? The word translated as complacency in the NIV is the Hebrew word shalvah, meaning: security, abundance, peace, prosperity or
quietness. These words spell out comfort zone. Is your comfort zone
preventing you from finding and walking the narrow path? What will your comfort zone do to you in the
end (verse 32)? Read Luke 13:23-30.
What is required to enter the narrow gate? Why will some not be able to enter? The story given here is very similar to the picture painted by
Jesus in Matthew
24:37-39; Matthew 7:21-23 and Matthew 22:1-14. Why were all these people denied entry into
the Kingdom? All these involve you
shedding your comfort zone to enter through the narrow gate into the Kingdom of
Heaven. The word translated as every effort in Luke 13:24 (NIV) is the Greek word agonizomai, which means: to fight, labor
fervently, strive, to contend with an adversary. The verb to agonize is
derived from this Greek word. Why does
the flesh agonize to enter and remain in the narrow way?
The gate to the narrow way must be entered. You must walk through it. It cannot just be admired or mulled
over. Read Jude 1-5. Why does Jude feel motivated to urge us to contend for the
faith? What happens when godless
men/women are received in full fellowship without the church addressing their
moral licentiousness? Is it possible to
be led astray? What happens to those
who do not believe after being delivered from sin? How do these licentious men/women show their disbelief (verse 8, 10, 12, 13)? Have they remained
in the narrow path? Read Matthew 24:3-13. What does Jesus say will happen to many
because of the increase of wickedness (verse
12)? Who will be saved? Read 1 Timothy 6:12.
The term translated as fight
is, again, agonizomai. What must we do with or in our faith? What happens if you don’t fight?
Who or what are you fighting (Ephesians 6:12; Romans 7:18-25)? Only when we are
agonizing to continue our walk in the
narrow path will our sins be forgiven (1 John 1:7).
What does walking in the light also involve (verse 9)? Can we have
forgiveness when we walk in darkness (broad road)? If you are not having a struggle with something in your life,
can you say you are agonizing as you
walk the narrow path? Name some of the
things that make the narrow path difficult for your flesh.
Read Revelation 22:12, 16. Who is coming soon? Who
is He (verse 13)? Who can enter the gates of the Holy City in
Heaven? Who must remain outside the
Holy City? How can we be sure that we
are washing our robe so we can enter the Holy City (1 John 1:6-10)? The gates of the city (Revelation 21:10-27) are not
necessarily there to keep people out, but to serve as an invitation to enter (John 3:16-21). Jesus Himself is our invitation and our gate
(John 10:7-10). The gates are always open, but each gate is
so narrow that nothing vile can enter in God’s Kingdom (Revelation 21:27).
Who will have a tough time entering the gate? Read Matthew 19:23-30. Who will have a hard time entering the
Kingdom? Why do you think this is
so? Even if you don’t have worldly
riches, could you possibly fall into this category? Why? What must we strive
for instead of riches (remember our Prime
6:33)? Read John 5:39-44. Jesus is rebuking the Jews who were seeking
to kill Him (verse 18). Did these Jews diligently study the
Scriptures? But, did they come to
Jesus? Why did Jesus say they didn’t
have the love of God in them? What was
their focus on (verse 43, 44)? What did Jesus direct them to do (verse 44)? If you seek honor from the flesh, will you be able to enter
through the narrow gate? Seek the honor
from the Lord, not the flesh.
The most difficult thing in the navigation of the narrow way
is balance. Read Ecclesiastes 7:18. What causes us to go wayward and follow
14:12; Jeremiah 10:23; Jeremiah 13:10)? Should you take yourself too seriously (Ecclesiastes 7:4, 9, 10, 16, 21,22)
and forfeit your crown of life by thinking you can navigate the strait on your
own? Or should you take your work in
the Kingdom seriously and have the hope of Heaven (Philippians 2:7-16)? The broad path
is flat and smooth—comfortable and appealing to the flesh. Self-serving and self-preservation pave the
broad road. Read Isaiah 35:8-10. Are you on the Way of Holiness? How will
those on this Way enter Zion, the Holy Hill?
What overtakes those on the narrow Way?
What flees from those on the strait Way?