The message of the entire Bible cannot get much clearer than it is proclaimed in this passage. Spreading out before you today are two paths. One path, called obedience, leads to God’s eternal Kingdom, to a life of fellowship with the eternal creator; to LIFE itself. The other path of self-reliance and self-indulgence leads to separation from the God of the universe, to isolation from true purpose and fellowship, to Death itself.
Jesus echoes these words in Matthew 7:13-14, ”Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” He said that a man who enters through the wide gate is like a man who builds his house on sand. When the winds blow and the rain crashes down, that house will be washed away. A man that enters through the narrow gate, on the other hand, will be anchored deep into the rock of truth, the bedrock of all existence, the original author, the uncaused cause, the alpha and the omega, the first and last. A house anchored into that kind of foundation will be able to weather any storm.
One of the greatest phrases in the Bible is in that defining moment when Moses burns his piercing gaze into the eyes and the souls of the Israelites and urges them, as a father who is letting his son go to be on his own would urge, “NOW CHOOSE LIFE.” Jesus said, in John 10:10, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the fullest.”
The question that perhaps you have asked about this is, “what is the good life?” Notice how Moses goes on to explain it in the same verse…”so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to His voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life…”
Here’s an acrostic that may help us remember what real life is all about.
Living In Father’s Fellowship Eternally
Death is anything that distracts us from knowing God and being fully filled with His presence.
Each day we are faced with this choice. Will you choose life today, or death? Will you choose to die to your selfish desires, your cherished sins, your self-pity, and lay those things at the altar of sacrifice so that you may exchange those nasty clothes for a brilliant garment of God’s grace and walk in obedience to His leading? Or, will you wake up and say, “What is on my agenda today; how can I build my dreams?”
I am not talking about waking up and risking the loss of your eternal salvation. I’m talking about waking up and risking the loss of your present salvation. Jesus didn’t come simply to give us fire-insurance so that we could pray a prayer and know that we will wake up in Heaven when we die. He came to give us life…right now. He came to give us life abundantly. Even those who have claimed Jesus as their savior, who are eternally secure in their post-mortal destination, can live in death each day. We can wake up and choose to turn aside from the path of surrender, obedience, and love, and walk down our own self-made path. How sad it is that so many Christians are not choosing life each day.
Today, right now, choose life.