Enter the narrow door

On the way to Jerusalem, someone asks Jesus if it is true that only a few will be saved.

Jesus does not respond directly to the question. For Jesus it is a question of the heart and not the intellect.

“Struggle to enter through the narrow door, for many, I tell you, will strive to enter but will not be strong enough.” (Luke 13: 24)

Reading this, I thought of the door of the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem. It is low and narrow, probably made so that soldiers couldn’t enter on horseback.

Bethlehemdoor

They would need to dismount and maybe even leave aside their shields and large weapons. They could not enter, trusting in their horses and swords (Psalm 20:7; Psalm 44:6). Their horses and weapons are not the strength needed to enter the cave of Bethlehem.

What do we need to leave behind to enter the door?

Jesus continues his answer to the question in a very unusual way. He tells us that it is not enough to be one of the inner circle or to be someone who hangs around him. In fact, he suggests that the hangers-on will be cast out and the strangers will be welcomed into the Reign of God and will sit at the banquet table.

Maybe we need to leave behind all our efforts to determine who is in and who is out and find ways to welcome all into the Reign of God.

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