01 The Entrance

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Scripture Reading: Matthew 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait [is] the gate, and narrow [is] the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

We have a need of a character of love. We will look at how to obtain a character of love. The scriptures give a clear definition of love;

1 Corinthians 13:4 Charity suffereth long, [and] is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not it’self, is not puffed up, 5 Doth not behave it’self unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; 6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; 7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 8 Charity never faileth: but whether [there be] prophecies, they shall fail; whether [there be] tongues, they shall cease; whether [there be] knowledge, it shall vanish away.

Here in the definition of love is displayed many characteristics. If you had to describe a friend, you might say my friend is a kind hearted man or woman, humble, happy, and joyous. Whatever words describe the character of your friend. These words are used to describe a good friend of ours is a portion of the definition of love. Love suffers long. It’s not just long suffering it’s also kindness and gentleness. It is not rude it is not sharp and unseemly. It is not proud. It loves truth. All these are segments of what love is as love is the all encompassing characteristics of a Christian.

1 John 4:7 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. 8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

This love encapsulates all the meaning of 1 Corinthians. Do you admire Jesus Christs character? When you see and hear the experiences of the gospel especially as it’s written in the Desire of Ages. Do you love that? Are you drawn to the kindness of the saviour? The truth, the firmness, all these attributes. I love the characteristic blends of Jesus Christ. It is something aspire to. To aspire to obtain. All those characteristics to have. All those characteristics in a package, is called love. Some may think I want to be kind but I don’t want to suffer long.

I want to be happy but I don’t want to rejoice in the truth. I want to be happy but I don’t want to be humbled. Sometimes we want to dissect this package and take bit’s to suit us. This package comes altogether or not at all. The old English word is charity but in our English language today we call it love. We call another word the same. Passion we call love. So when we read that we are to love one another. We may not understand what the scripture is saying. We may not understand what love is all about. To understand the title to enter into love we want to understand the meaning of love. The difference between passion.

Love is not unreasonable; it is not blind. It is pure and holy. But the passion of the natural heart is another thing altogether.  {AH 50.5}

Passion is from the natural heart. It comes naturally to you. The word passion is called love. It is so rare, true love, and this rare plant comes not from the natural heart but from Jesus Christ. To compare love, the love of God and the love of the natural heart we read a scriptural comparison of these two types of love. Often we think love happens in married life but God requires we have love for one another. Love has to do with rebirth and the saving of the soul. Love has to do with making it to heaven. It’s a pre-requisite.

Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

The flesh lusts passion against the spirit of God. Our passion is the opposing pole to the love of God.

Galatians 5:18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. 5:19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are [these]; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told [you] in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

Some may argue that these things are not love but from the natural heart. The passion that lies in our heart to love with our feelings is the same ingredient that makes us do all the others.

But the passion of the natural heart is another thing altogether. While pure love will take God into all it’s plans, and will be in perfect harmony with the Spirit of God, passion will be headstrong, rash, unreasonable, defiant of all restraint, and will make the object of it’s choice an idol. In all the deportment of one who possesses true love, the grace of God will be shown {AH 50.5}

An example when people fall in love they think about nothing else. It also applies to things we love, objects, our opinions. This entire attitude is the same source whether it’s toward a girlfriend, boyfriend, object, vehicle, house or in the religious realms of an opinion or belief. Whatever it is. It’s not love, it’s passion.  Human love fails. It can’t suffer long. Some after years of married life, this so called love to this person of our youth goes away and that same passion is ignited for someone else. Whether anything else comes of that or not is not needful for adultery. If you look and think within your heart, you’ve committed it in idolatry to idolise things.

Murder comes from the same place passion comes from. Sometimes we love ourselves so much and someone comes to smite us, we have hatred towards them because they have disturbed the thing we love. That hatred is a form of human love. The love of the bible says if a man smite you on your right cheek, you are to turn the other because love of the bible is not hate. Drunkenness. To love the freedom, drunken in physical wine but also in materialistic things or false doctrine, just to have my own way of thinking is drunkenness and we love it. All this love is the opposing pole of the love required to enter the kingdom of heaven. When the day of reckoning shall come it is not what did you do, but with how much love did you do it?  This identifies the works of the flesh. Now we read of this heavenly package which is rare;

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

The bible here in Galatians draws a fine line between passion and love. Between the natural heart and what you will do naturally. Whatever you do, If it doesn’t contain this package, it is nothing. How do you feel when someone you think may love you says all these beautiful words but doesn’t follow them up? People call it hypocrisy. When the test comes and the going gets hard and we change our minds, it is like a sounding brass. The Spirit of Prophecy declares the promises of man are like ropes of sand. Have you ever tried to climb a rope of sand? It doesn’t exist. For us to suppose that we love without this package of kindness, are we kind, are we gentle?, meek, long suffering, do we rejoice in the truth? Because if we don’t, we are destitute.

1 Corinthians 13:1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become [as] sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2 And though I have [the gift of] prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed [the poor], and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

If we do not have this package of love we will not make heaven, we will only make hell.

Matthew 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: thereat: 14 Because strait [is] the gate, and narrow [is] the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

There are two classes of people here. One walk after the flesh and one seeks after the spirit. Multitudes fall down to destruction where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth. Do you desire to be happy and have these characteristics of Jesus Christ? There is only one way to be happy and that is through the straight gate. Jesus is on his way to Jerusalem and someone asks him, how many will be saved?  How many people will have love? All those that have true love will be saved. How many will have love?

Luke 13:24 Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. 25 When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are: 13:26 Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets. 27 But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity. 28 There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you [yourselves] thrust out.

Who is Jesus speaking to? One of his followers. I say unto you. I say to you, that many will seek to enter in but won’t be able. In Matthew there were two roads. Many go through the broad road and few find the straight gate. Do the few that find the straight gate all enter?  The majority of this planet has chosen to go down the broad road and few have chosen the narrow path. Those who have chosen it will not find it. Some will say this is discouraging me, how can I be saved? We must heed the first word of verse 24. Strive to enter in. Many who can preach a sermon, do missionary work, who can have a high standard of profession, many will seek to enter in but won’t be able

Luke 13:25 When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are:

It’s interesting the words Lord, Lord. When do you say something twice? When you really feel the need. If you just say help once, but help, help, you are in dire straits. It’s not just Lord, it’s Lord, Lord, open. The Lord will say I don’t know who you are because he that loveth not, knoweth not God. Some people join a church for position and strive to enter in. Strive to enter in, enter into what?  A state or place?  Strive to enter in. Do we believe in the shut door theory? Do you believe there came a time to the antediluvian world and the door was shut? Those who professed godliness but denied the power of the Lord came and said Lord , Lord. The weeping and gnashing of teeth comes from those professions who don’t pave the way. The scripture sounds the trumpet turn from your wicked ways. To the professor it is a greater wrong.

Hebrews 6:4 For [it is] impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, 5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, 6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put [him] to an open shame.

Woe unto you scribes and Pharisees. Woe unto you professors are the words of this text. Unto you when you are thrust out.  When you are out then you will begin to say Lord, Lord. This is a straight testimony to us sitting today. Many of the few won’t make it. Apostle Paul wanted all Israel to be saved. Once the master has risen up, there will be a time of trouble and many will say Lord, Lord but the door is shut as there is no love. The Lord will say I know you not.  Without the plant of love, you and I can I never be saved. We cannot be saved without love. As we continue in a series of studies, we can understand how to enter into love, not passion, the world has a love heart and they say you fall into love but the scripture says you fall into lust. The bible says you fall into perdition. Have you seen the heart with the arrow through it? Weeping and gnashing of teeth. The world is not covering their type of love. It is weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Ecclesiastes 7:26 And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart [is] snares and nets, [and] her hands [as] bands: whoso pleaseth God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her.

More bitter than death. This is not just a sermon to say that there is damnation at the end of the road that leads to destruction. This is true and the master of the house has gone on a journey and has given us talents. Soon he is to come back and see if we have love. Someone may be kind but they may not be patient. Someone may have aspects, I’m kind, generous, but unless we have the whole package, the master of the house will say why have you buried my talent? You are to take it to the exchanger. Strive to enter in. To enter in to the state of being before you enter into the place, indeed Jesus is talking of heaven, strive to enter in. Heaven is not a place for those who do not have love.  Many will seek to enter in. How many of us do seek love? Do we long to have a life where people are kind? Do we long for that? I pray we do. Many will seek to enter in but won’t be able. What is it that stops us from entering?  The flesh lusteth against the spirit and these are contrary to one another as half our heart is still attached to idolatry. Our prayer should be cleanse me from secret faults. Here is a picture of a person. Someone who has a high standard, someone who is a professor. It’s talking of a young man.

Proverbs 7:1 My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee. 2 Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye. 3 Bind them upon thy fingers, write them upon the table of thine heart. 4 Say unto wisdom, Thou [art] my sister; and call understanding [thy] kinswoman:

Have a relationship with these beautiful attributes of the spirit of God.  Al these things, love them. Love them like you love your wife. I want to be kind and patient, I don’t want to speak rash words.

Proverbs 7:5 That they may keep thee from the strange woman, from the stranger [which] flattereth with her words. 6 For at the window of my house I looked through my casement, 7 And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding, 8 Passing through the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house, 9 In the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night: 10 And, behold, there met him a woman [with] the attire of an harlot, and subtle of heart. 11 (She [is] loud and stubborn; her feet abide not in her house: 12 Now [is she] without, now in the streets, and lieth in wait at every corner.) 13 So she caught him, and kissed him, [and] with an impudent face said unto him, 14 [I have] peace offerings with me; this day have I payed my vows. 15 Therefore came I forth to meet thee, diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee. 16 I have decked my bed with coverings of tapestry, with carved [works], with fine linen of Egypt. 17 I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18 Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves. 19 For the goodman [is] not at home, he is gone a long journey: 20 He hath taken a bag of money with him, [and] will come home at the day appointed. 21 With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him. 22 He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks; 23 Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it [is] for his life. 24 Hearken unto me now therefore, O ye children, and attend to the words of my mouth. 25 Let not thine heart decline to her ways, go not astray in her paths. 26 For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong [men] have been slain by her. 27 Her house [is] the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death.

What is this talking about? Sometimes we can set the trumpet to the open harlots and sinners like the Pharisees did. The unclean. We can say to the literal drunken, there is no heaven for you.  Jesus said the publicans and harlots will enter the kingdom of heaven before you because spiritual idolatry and witchcraft are worse to God than the physical. So it is to the professors, this is a woman but it’s none other than the Babylon, the world. It’s at every street corner and will seduce any that is void of understanding and seduce them into paths of living that are wrong.

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

We can have a high profession, we can do missionary work and yet the mentality of the world can be whispering in our ear and we can be subtly brought into the ways of Satan. We can think, I’m leader, I‘m this or that or I have this and that ability but love is not puffed up. Flattering lips shall be cut off.  The way to hell is the works of the flesh. Proverbs 7 uses the allegory of physical lust that we as professors can fall into. As we seek to enter we find we are unable because there is the pride of life and emulation. I need to be better than the. To try and be spiritually holier than anyone else is the works of the flesh. Revelation 18 is the message we are to bear in these days.

Revelation 18:5 Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.

What spirit dwells within you? The works of the flesh? Every foul attitude and block in our character is in this cage of Babylon. We can say we don’t go to the catholic church, we’re Sabbath keepers, we’re free from Babylon. Babylon holds every fouled spirit. Many desire to not follow God, they will choose to walk down the broad road of folly. Of the few will enter in at the straight gate. Strive to enter in.

Revelation 18:3 For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. 4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.

Strive to enter into the straight gate. No sin will get through. The gate is broad for the biggest sinner to get through but no sin will get through. If you saw a picture of man lying would you say he is striving? Or if you saw a man training for a race, would you say he is striving? Run that you may win the prize. Peter tells us that the entrance of how to enter into love starts not necessarily from the whole package at once but adding from what you already have. What God has already given you. The master has gone but has left us with many talents and the day of reckoning is upon us. What will you tell God who will say I gave you talents, why did you bury them? Strive to be diligent.

2 Peter 1:5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; 6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;  7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. 

We can’t say to god, I didn’t read the book you gave me. I put it on the shelf. But God wanted the book written in the heart. The whole package is now complete. Charity is the characteristics of God. Be ye therefore perfect even as my father in heaven is perfect. We need to have attitudes which are becoming of heaven. We need not be rash. We need to add to what we have got, what God has given us. Till we come to charity.

2 Peter 1:11 For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

To enter into the state of love is the only way to enter into the place of love. If we can add these things, so an entrance, so God can swing the gate wide and say enter in. An entrance will be ministered unto you abundantly. How do you feel to have the angels awaiting your return? They don’t keep the doors open a little bit but they rejoice saying come in brother. Come in. The gate is straight but it’s huge, a huge gate. Strive to enter in. To enter in we must have the state of love. God is desiring that he could give us this life.

John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have [it] more abundantly.

What quality of life do you have? Are you suffering? Are you stressed? Anxiety? Guilt? What sort of life is that? Is that really life? It’s not life. It’s the beginnings of death. The moment we are born we start to die but Jesus Christ will give us life and life more abundantly.  As we have the abundance of life, meekness, temperance, abundantly, so the door will be swung abundantly.  Whosoever asks, receives. Who soever seeks finds and whosoever knocks shall be opened. Many will seek and find but shall not be able to enter because they don’t knock. When they do eventually knock, the door is shut for good. Not today for life more abundantly. We know where it is. We have tasted of the good word of God. I want it. I want joy. I want every aspect of this package of love. Lord, Lord while you are there help me. Whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. May God help us to enter in and to knock and ask today while we can. Today if you hear his voice, harden not your heart. By the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, this is the beginning of how to enter into love. We want to understand how to have attitude with love. May the Lord help us to remember. May the Lord give us grace.

Amen.

 

Posted on March 6, 2010, in Divine Service Sermons, Sermons For Sabbath and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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