Christ swiftly moves from point to point, each seemingly more solemn than the last.  The way of salvation, He tells us, is no broad and easy way.  It almost seems as if this were spoken to counteract the delusions of our own generation, but truly it fits every generation.  How many have there ever been at any given time in history who were truly willing to take up their cross and follow Christ?  Many have been religious, but very few have been willing to build their house of faith upon the solid rock of Christ and His teachings.  We must enter in through the strait gate of faith.  This means that we must disdain all fleshly confidence, forgetting every notion that we can satisfy God through the works of our flesh.  By such works no flesh can be justified in His sight.  This condemns most of the religious world out of hand, which looks for acceptance with God through the practice of ordinances and acts of personal righteousness, rather than submitting themselves to the righteousness of Christ.  How few there are who wish to believe that salvation is summed up in the great transaction of II Corinthians 5:21: Christ made sin for us, we made the righteousness of God in Him!

The only way we can know if we are in the narrow way or the broad is by paying close heed to the teaching of the Word of God.  Is our faith placed squarely and solely in the person and work of Jesus Christ?  Are we trusting to anything other than Christ crucified and resurrected to make us right with God?  The Scripture teaches that as many as are under the works of the law are under the curse, and this goes for all who are outside of Christ, through Whom alone acceptance with God may be found.  But then we must remember that saving faith is not simply the act of assenting to the facts of the Gospel.  A living faith is one which first of all clings to Christ; but because of its vital connection to Christ, it goes on to manifest itself in good works.  It takes to heart, for example, Christ’s teaching that we ought to do unto others as we would have them do unto us.  It takes very seriously that those who know God will walk in His commands, that we ought to present our bodies a living sacrifice unto God, that if we would know that we have passed from death unto life, we must love the brethren.  Saving faith must match how the Scripture defines genuine faith.  It must first hope for justification only through Christ and His work, but then it must manifest itself in bringing forth fruit into God.  This is the narrow way, and any doctrine opposing this, be the error on the side of justification through fleshly works or on the side of turning the grace of God into lasciviousness, they are both the broad way which leads to destruction.  God preserve us from traveling that well-worn path!

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