In this Sunday’s Gospel passage (Luke 13:22-30), Jesus is on his way to Jerusalem to complete His mission: to die for us, to open the door of heaven for us. He is asked whether only a few will be saved. He does not give a direct answer but he goes on to speak about the personal effort that is demanded from those who wish to enter the kingdom. ‘Try your best to enter by the narrow door, because, I tell you, many will try to enter and will not succeed”. What does Jesus mean by this expression? He is the door. He speaks of that in the earlier chapter….. I am the door; if any one enters by me, he will be saved (John 10:9).
Jesus opens the way for us to enter into God’s kingdom through the cross where he has laid down his life as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
He then gives a parable, pointing out that merely hearing his message or being in His company does not guarantee salvation. What is needed is personal commitment – a commitment to grow in friendship with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and in authentic love of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Those who seek to please God must use the means of grace that deepen friendship with the Lord: the sacraments, prayers, and the works of love.
God Bless, Fr Michael