Wrong Question – Right Answer

Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? Luke 13:23

The person who asked this question of Jesus is not identified; we do not know if the questioner was one of the disciples, a Jew or a Greek, a man or a woman. We do not know anything of the questioner’s circumstances, if he was rich or poor, a master or a slave, or if he was young or old. Though the questioner addressed Jesus as “Lord” (kurios) we do not know if the use of this term implied a deeper relationship (one who has supreme authority) or if it was used merely as form of respectful address (sir or Mr.). We do not know the purpose of the question, was the questioner accusing Jesus of being narrowly exclusive? or perhaps the questioner sought to trap Jesus because He did not exclude a particular nationality or include a specific race in His teaching about the Kingdom. It is equally possible that the questioner comprehended the difference between the teaching of the Master and the realities of the world and was really questioning if Jesus’ teachings were “practical” they sound nice but there is no way they can have application for me in the “real” world.

What ever the questioner’s attitude, circumstance, or purpose, Jesus replied by changing the direction of the question from being about “how many will be saved” to “what I must do to be saved”:

And he said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow door” (13:24).

Jesus replied, not only to the questioner but to everyone, to be saved you must “strive” and that the only means of entry is through the “narrow door”. Of Himself, Jesus said “I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved” (John 10:9). That door is narrow indeed and to enter all must be stripped away that is not of Him; through that portal can no man enter that has not denied himself and daily taken up the cross (Luke 9:23). It is not enough to merely seek , but we must strive and “endure to the end” (Matthew 10:22). It is not enough to know Jesus, you must be known by Him (Luke 13:26-27). It is not enough to say “Lord, Lord”, we must be able to say “My Lord and my God”. It is not enough to question, we must strive, as did Jacob, with God in prayer and against sin and this with all our heart.

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