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This is the Way

Sermon on the Mount  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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The Sermon on the Mount comes to a close and Jesus brings everything to a point of decision: will the people become people in God’s Kingdom or will they remain a part of the corrupt world?
Decisions and choices are constantly before us.
The greatest decision has to do with the direction of our lives.
Most decisions narrows down to two choices.
The choice between two diametrically different directions has biblical precedent:
Deuteronomy 30:19-20I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying his voice and holding fast to him, for he is your life and length of days, that you may dwell in the land that the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.”
Joshua 24:15 “And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Psalm 1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
Jesus concludes His sermon by contrasting two ways (broad & narrow), two trees/fruit (bad & good), two claims (false & sincere), two foundations (weak & strong), two houses (foolish & wise).
With these pairs, Jesus insists that every person is on one of two ways or paths.

I. Two Ways

A. The Broad Way

1. It is open

(illus.) The Widest Highway in the US is on Interstate 10 in Houston, Texas, which at one point has 26 lanes of traffic including six feeders and four HOV lanes. The widest highway in the world is the G4 in China which at one point has 50 lanes of traffic.
a. No restrictions: You can believe what you want to believe.
b. No rules: You can do what you want to do.
c. No rails: You can go where you want to go.
You can live whatever way you want to live.

2. It is attractive

3. It is popular

It is the road that everyone seems to be on
(Matthew 7:13b) “for those who enter it are many”
It is a way that is hard to resist because it is so easy to get caught up in the flow

B. The Narrow Way

1. It is restrictive

a. Truth about God is revealed
b. Truth about right and wrong is not relative
c. Truth about life is reality (not fantasy)

2. It is hard

There will be temptations
There will be persecution

3. It is unpopular

Who wants to be considered “narrow”?
a. There is no room for people pleasing
b. There is no room for popularity polls
God’s opinion is the only one that matters

II. Two Destinations

A. The wide way ends in a bad way

1. Deception is common

The crowd on the broad way seldom thinks about what will come at the end.
The crowd on the broad way always thinks there is more time
(Luke 12:16-20) And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.” ’ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’

2. Destruction is coming

The dead end of the broad way is a cliff that falls into an eternal abyss
(Psalm 73:4-5, 16-19) For they have no pangs until death; their bodies are fat and sleek. 5 They are not in trouble as others are; they are not stricken like the rest of mankind.
16But when I thought how to understand this, it seemed to me a wearisome task, 17until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end. 18Truly you set them in slippery places; you make them fall to ruin. 19How they are destroyed in a moment, swept away utterly by terrors!
(Romans 6:23)
(Proverbs 14:12) There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.

B. The narrow way ends with a new day

1. Eternal life is promised

(Psalm 73:25-28) Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. 26My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. 27For behold, those who are far from you shall perish; you put an end to everyone who is unfaithful to you. 28But for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.
(John 14:1-3) “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.
(Revelation 21:1-5) “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”

2. Eternal hope perseveres

(Romans 8:18-21) “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”

III. Two Gates

A. The Wide Gate

No decision is needed to walk through this gate since everyone has already gone through it and by nature we are on the broad way

B. The Narrow Gate

1. It is the Lord

(John 10:9) “I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.

2. It is limited

a. You must go solo

b. You must strip down

There is no room for baggage of worldly things
“Nothing in my hand I bring, but simply to the cross I cling.”
There is no room for both the new man and the old man
There is no room for your way, your wisdom, and your will

c. You must stoop low

There is no room for pride
The entrance is marked by the first two beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-4)

d. You must surrender all

(Luke 9:23)

IV. Two Decisions

A. Deny Christ

B. Come through Christ

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