As Jesus was making his way toward Jerusalem, he was passing through towns and villages. Someone asked him, “Lord, will those who are saved be few?” (Luke 13:23 ESV). This was an important question that may be a lot more about quality than it is about quantity. It’s doubtful this person was asking about statistics on those who would be saved. Even if he intended to learn about quantity, Jesus responded in a qualitative manner.
Jesus’ reply was, “Strive to enter by the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able” (vs. 24). Jesus then went on to describe what he meant by this by concluding, “And behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last” (vs. 30). This language was often used by Jesus to talk about the importance of humble servanthood. Disciples should consider other people more important then themselves. We should empty ourselves for the sake of others. We should give and serve without expecting anything in return.
This is the narrow door. The door is narrow because there are no shortcuts. There are no get into heaven for free cards. There are no gimmicks or shortcuts to get into heaven. Salvation requires service, dedication, and sacrifice. And Jesus pleaded with his listeners to enter by the narrow door. It was not popular to enter by this path. It required breaking from traditions. Often it meant breaking from family and friends. The narrow gate isn’t comfortable, but the reward is eternal!