The Challenge of the Difficult
Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. Luke 13:24.
A strait gate means a gate difficult to enter. By this illustration Christ showed how hard it is for men and women to leave the world and the attractions it holds, and heartily and lovingly obey the commandments of God. The wide gate is easy to enter. Entrance through it does not call for the restrictions which are painful to the human heart. Self-denial and self-sacrifice are not seen in the broad way. There depraved appetite and natural inclinations find abundant room. There may be seen self-indulgence, pride, envy, evil surmisings, love of money, self-exaltation.
Said Christ, “Strive”–agonize–“to enter in. . . .” We must feel our continual dependence upon God and the great weakness of our own wisdom and our own judgment and strength, and then depend wholly upon Him who has conquered the foe in our behalf, because He pitied our weakness and knew we should be overcome and perish if He did not come to our help. . . . Think not that by any easy or common effort you can win the eternal reward. You have a wily foe upon your track. “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne” (Revelation 3:21). Here is the battle to overcome as Christ has overcome. His life of temptation, of trial, of toil and conflict, is before us for us to imitate. We may make efforts in our own strength, but not succeed. But when we fall all helpless and suffering and needy upon the Rock of Christ, feeling in our inmost soul that our victory depends upon His merits, that all our efforts of themselves without the special help of the great Conqueror will be without avail, then Christ would send every angel out of glory to rescue us from the power of the enemy rather than that we should fall.
We need to see that the way is narrow, and the gate strait. But as we pass through the strait gate, the wideness is without limit.
That I May Know Him p. 304
—–Please pray for a situation that a family member is going through. A
—— Please pray for the evangelism events that are taking place now or in the near future. Diane [If you want a list of the events, let me know and I will email them to you.—Rose]
A few years ago, one of the churches invited a group who have put together a model of the tabernacle in the wilderness. It was very informative and really made this important subject to life. This quarter the Sabbath School lessons are on the Sanctuary. Even though I am familiar with this great type of the Heavenly Sanctuary, it has been good to review.
With great care, our Loving Father gave Moses the pattern for the sacrificial system that pointed to Jesus and His great sacrifice for us. It serves “unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern showed to thee in the mount.” Heb 8:5. As Moses met with God face to face upon Mount Sinai, he was shown and given a blueprint, so to speak, for the tabernacle He was about to build that was be but a dim reflection of the great sanctuary in Heaven. Each piece of furniture, each ceremony, was to point to a Heavenly reality. Yet how rarely we study this revealing of the plan of salvation.
Each piece of furniture, each ceremony pointed to Jesus and His great work for our salvation. The sacrificial alter that stood in the courtyard pointed to the “Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.” John 1:29 The golden candlestick represented Jesus, the Light of the World. (John 8:12) The table of showbread illustrates Jesus, the bread of life. (John 6:35) The alter of incense exemplifies our prayers mingled with Christ’s righteousness. And in the Holy of Holies, the ark stood for the very throne of God. Paul tells us, “Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.” Heb 8:1, 2 Indeed, the book of Hebrews (especially chapters 7-9) is full of detailed information on Jesus’ High Priestly ministry in the Sanctuary Above.
. Let us daily read and meditate upon His Love Letter through the sanctuary system that we may be overcomers and inherit eternal life. Let us with joy and gratitude accept His Great Gift and Sacrifice, that we may bring joy to His Great Heart of Love. Let us daily kneel before our Saviour and give Him the thankyou gift He longs for—our undivided heart.