Friday, October 21, 2022

Handout - Matthew Chapter 7:13-14 - Narrow Gate

by Stan Feldsine (

Matt 7:13-14 & Matt 7:21-23 (Luke 13:22-30) - The Narrow Gate

This section will also cover Mat 7:21-23 and Luk 13:22-30.

Jesus goes on to illustrate the entrance to the Kingdom. John and Jesus had been proclaiming that "the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand", but many were rejecting this and disappointing the believing Jews. They asked "are only a few people going to be saved?" (Luk 13:22-23). To the Jewish mind, salvation and entrance to the Kingdom went hand in hand, to enter the Kingdom, they had to be saved. The unbelieving Jews believed they were saved by being a physical descendant of Abraham. In response to this misconception, Jesus illustrated what He was saying with a story of a man giving a feast. The context of these passages is the Sheep and Goat judgment at the end of the Tribulation that determines who has an open door into the Kingdom, and who faces a closed door (Luk 13:25-28).

There are many who do not believe God's Word. Various cults, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, orthodox religious Jews who reject Messiah, and those who believe physical lineage to Abraham is sufficient, and many who believe they are working for "God", but deny Jesus as God fall into this category. Also among this crowd are false prophets and teachers.

Those who treat national Israel with disdain during the Tribulation also fall into this category as well, for they reject what God says about His nation Israel. These are all unbelievers who may confess that they know God, but they deny His teachings and prefer another way than Jesus to heaven, universally incorporating works into their supposed method of salvation.

The following passages all speak about this same time period of judgment based on wide and narrow gates, and open and closed doors.

Sheep and Goat Judgment - (Mat 25:31-32, Mat 25:34-36, Mat 25:41-46, Joel 3:1-2).

Wheat and Tare Parable - (Mat 13:36-43)

The 10 Virgins Parable - (Mat 25:1-13)

This parable illustrates entrance to the Kingdom and the wedding banquet, not the Rapture. The people are divided into believers who have the indwelling Holy Spirit and are met with an open door, and unbelievers who do not and are met with a closed door. Luke records Jesus bringing out the fact that the Kingdom is open to Gentiles as well as Jews (Luk 13:29-30).


Gates represent entrances into a course of life. The narrow gate symbolizes less accessibility and popularity, and is a road of difficulty and persecution. The wide gate symbolizes approval and acceptance by the majority of people.

In the context of the Sermon on the Mount, where the Kingdom standards are being revealed, and the lesson being that our righteousness must be greater than that of the Pharisees, the wide and narrow roads can be compared to the characters of the Pharisees vs. that of the saints.

The narrow road represents a life of internal transformation, everything we have talked about so far. It represents the path in which the Holy Spirit brings transformation to the hearts of people bringing a permanent change to their character from glory to glory. We are His people.

The wide road represents the road of external requirements of the religious and self-righteous, having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof. Many will be led to a path of religion and self-righteousness and in the end they will find destruction.

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