Luke 13:24-25 (ESV Strong’s Bible)
” 24 “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 When once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, I do not know where you come from.’”
From the Greek language, the word strive is a command to continue to make every effort and the word enter, is a word that means to enter once and for all. Therefore, to strive to enter means to continue to make every effort to enter once and for all through the narrow door which comes with obstacles, pain and discomfort. We know from Matt 7:13-14 that this door leads to eternal life. So, the temporary and earthly pain that we feel going through this door is nothing compared to the glory that we will recieve when Jesus comes. The choice of the use of the word to strive, alone should indicate that, it will not be easy to enter through this door and every effort is required.
There are three reasons why many who seek this door will not be able to enter. Let’s look at them.
This first reason why Jesus is saying that many will seek to enter but they will not be able to, is purely because they either cannot cope with the requirements to enter the door or the requirements to stay inside the door and walk the narrow path that they are required to walk after entering the door (Matt 7:13-14).
Jesus said in John 6:37 that whoever comes to Him, He will never cast our or expel. This brings us to the second reason why the will seek but not able to enter. It is because it will be too late and the door will be shut and it will not be open again. These are the people who spend their lives in sin, obeying the devil and living out the desires of their hearts, body and mind. These are the people who said to themselves, there is still time, just before I die, I will repent. For now, I am still living a sinful life because I am enjoying it. One day, this door will be closed and the opportunity to enter would have been missed and all that will be left, will be hell fire. Matt 24:44 tells us that we don’t know when Jesus is coming so, we cannot bank on some future even that we don’t have control over.
Thirdly, Matt 24:44 and 25:10-13 inform us that we need to be ready for we don’t know when Jesus will come and if we are not ready, the door will be shut and we will be left outside where there will be gnashing of teeth and weeping, when you see everyone in the kingdom of God and you on the outside as indicated by Luke 13:28. Once you die, the door automatically closes for you. This is because you can still enter this door while you are still alive, once you die without having entered this door, it is too late.
So, as Jesus said, continue to make every effort to once and for all enter through this narrow door. Repent and put your trust only in Jesus and you will be saved and you will be able to enter this door. Jesus said in John 14:6 that I am the way the truth and the life and only through Him, will we enter heaven. Acts 4:12 clearly indicate that Jesus is the only name given under heaven and earth by which anyone can be saved. Now since Jesus did say in John 10 that He is the door, this means you need to confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and beleive in your heart that God raised Him from the dead and this is the only way to be saved.
Jesus is the only door to heaven. Jesus refers to himself as the narrow door, meaning that to follow Him, requires self sacrifice. Jesus did say that those that want to follow him must deny themselves and pick up the cross. This is what makes this door narrow. It is the requirements that makes people uncomfortable in following Jesus or entering this door. Make every effort to follow Jesus, make every effort to deny yourlsef, make every effort to pick up the cross as this will allow you to enter the narrow door.