The Narrow And Wide Gates
Study Notes and Slides
We have seen through the former teaching on the rebuilding of Yerushalayim (Jerusalem) that it was rebuilt through much struggle and that truly is the picture of the life of the believer, so today I hope to reveal how by looking at the Hebrew language within the Scriptural writings whether greater revelation can be gleaned. We previously saw that though YAHWEH always desired that his people live in prosperity in a land that was flowing with milk & honey the reality was that they only returned to him & his Torah when the road became Narrow while they were in captivity stripped of pleasures and deprived of the Temple. Today we will address some rather interesting truths hidden within the Brit Chadashah the Nazarene writings to ascertain how the nature of our faith is revealed within the words of Yahshua our Master and the soon returning King.
The Wider Gate:
In the Scriptures when YHWH completes the Marriage ceremony on Mount Sinai and gives his people Yisrael the Torah which is his Eternal covenant there is a perceived thought that the way to Salvation & blessing has a wider sense found in obedience to his Covenant. We know that obedience is the standard that YHWH has and will always use. We read in Debarim (Deuteronomy) 28 how exceedingly blessed the people would be if they did not turn to the left or the right but did all according to his Commandments (Mitsvot). To the people this must have seemed like an easy way to blessing and having the Presence, the Shekinah of YHWH in their midst making them a force to be reckoned with, so they said the following and I am sure they said it with all good intention:
Shemoth (Exodus) 19:7- 9 So Mosheh came and called for the elders of the people, and laid before them all these words which YHWH (the Lord) commanded him. 8 Then all the people answered together and said, “All that YHWH has spoken we will do.” So Mosheh brought back the words of the people to YHWH. 9 And YHWH said to Moses, “Behold, I come to you in the thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with you, and believe you forever.”
So Mosheh told the words of the people to YHWH (the Lord).
Rather than being an easy & wider road to Salvation & Blessing we find that the people of Yisrael were quick to turn from his ways even before the Ketubah the Marriage contract was given them, this being the words of YAHWEH written for them as the Ten Covenant Words the ten Commandments which Mosheh smashed before their eyes because of their disregard for the oath they had made to YAHWEH only 40 days earlier after which they made a golden Calf to worship in total disregard of his commandment. From this incident we find Yisrael living in constant struggle to uphold the Covenant resulting in many attacks of the enemy through the many years of the Judges & the Kings that finally led to the exile for Yahudah (Judah) as we dealt with in the Rebuilding of Yerushalayim (Jerusalem) & the dispersion among the Assyrian Empire for the Northern Ten Tribes. The point of all this struggle and failure however was in fact to help the people see that the Gate for their Salvation & Blessing was not as wide as they thought but very narrow and only found in the “Chesed” (Favour or Grace) of YAHWEH according to his promises that go right back to Bereshith (Genesis) 3:15 where the promise is first given that the seed of the woman will crush the head of the Serpent revealing the promise of the Machiach (Messiah) but also to show all mankind that there is a perpetual struggle between the Kingdom of light & the Kingdom of Darkness.
Romans 10:4 For Messiah is the goal of the ‘Torah unto righteousness’ to everyone
who believes. 5 For Mosheh writes about the righteousness which is of the Torah,
“The man who does these shall live by them.”
What this scripture suggests is that from the very beginning the Torah had the purpose to show the people that they, in their own strength could not attain to the righteousness of YAHWEH and that this knowledge would bring them to the Machiach (Messiah) a road that by all rights is not easy and wide but difficult and narrow.
The particular section we will look at today centres on the beginning of Yahshua’s ministry and is usually referred to as “the Sermon on the Mount.” Yahshua is dealing with many aspects of the life of a faithful believer giving many instructions & directions. The particular verses we will extrapolate are found in the following:
MattithYahu (Matthew) 7:13- 14 “Enter in through the narrow gate! Because the gate is wide – and the way is broad – that leads to destruction and there are many who enter in through it. 14 Because the gate is narrow and the way is hard pressed which leads to life
and there are few who find it.
To fully appreciate the depth of meaning within these verses we need to investigate various words from the Hebrew meaning & breakdown of individual words something that will bring to light some amazing truths.
The first word to analyse is the Word “Narrow”: rye Hatsar with the following meaning:
Strong’s Number H6862 – enemy, distress, narrow, small, tribulation etc.
In the Blue letter Bible we can see it used in Proverbs 23:27 to demonstrate its usage as “Narrow.”
Mishle (Proverbs) 23:27 For a whore is a deep pit, And a strange woman is a narrow well.
In the Blue letter Bible from 1 Samuel 2:32 it is used as “Enemy.”
1 Shemu’EL (Samuel) 2:32 And you shall see an enemy in My Dwelling Place, despite all the good which Elohim does for Yisra’ĕl and there shall not be an old man in your house forever.
Since Hebrew is such a deep & intricate language we need to understand how the same word can mean Narrow & enemy in a different context or at the same time.
Note: It is also interesting to note that the word Tsar or Tzar was also formerly the Ruler of Russia and gives the sense of a person with “Dictatorial powers” therefore truly an enemy in the sense of the Hebrew Word.
To grasp how the way “the Derek” in Hebrew from which we get direction is linked to an “Enemy” is that the way of Salvation & Blessing is obstructed by an array of Adversaries or Enemies to make the Way extremely difficult & concealed that only a few find it.
Note: (Hidden Truths Hebraic Scrolls NT) The Earlier manuscripts have the word “door” instead of “Gate” which was used in later manuscripts. The Aramaic word “Tarea” can be translated as “door” or “gate”. Since the tent had a door this could be appropriate as well, since this ties in with the words of Yahshua in:
Yahuchanan (John) 10:9 “I am the door. Whoever enters through Me, he shall be saved, and shall go in and shall go out and find pasture.
Also often Yisrael is used for a title of the Machiach (Messiah) therefore the way to enter is through Yisrael the door since we know the Covenant was made with the House of Ya’acov (Jacob) & the House of Yisrael.
This also takes us back to Ya’acov in Bereshith (Genesis) 28:17 which is hinting at Yahshua being the narrow door:
Bereshith (Genesis) 28:17 And Ya’acov was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of EL, and this is the gate of heaven!”
It also gives us a Remez level (hint) in the following where we see Balaam’s donkey which stood in the narrow path and saw the Malak of YHWH who is Yahshua giving also the Sod level (the hidden) meaning. We walk through the “door” being Yahshua Ha Machiach (the Messiah).
Yahshua’s ways however are the ways of the Mosaic Torah which are hard for many who recoil at keeping the Biblical feasts calling them legalistic. Also Sabbath keeping makes the path even more “Narrow” but according to his Word we read in:
Chazon (Revelation) 14:12 Here is the endurance of the set-apart ones; here are those who keep the commandments of Elohim and the faith of Yahshua.
Chazon (Revelation) 22:14 Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.
Each Shabbat we read the importance of Shabbat found in:
Shemoth (Exodus) 31 in which we read that the Shabbat will be “the sign between YAHWEH and Yisrael (His people) for the generations to come.”
We see from all this just how “Narrow” the way is with Yahshua being the “Door” or gate and the path being the Torah of truth bringing us to completeness in Yahshua. No-one gains entry without Yahshua but the way is the Torah also and not living a lawless life since Yahshua said:
Yahuchanan (John) 14:15 “If you love me, obey my commandments.
In the time of Yahshua there were the Pharisees some of which believed that by following their weighty commandments which were derived from the Written Torah as well as the Oral Torah that were passed down and eventually written in the Talmud which we read as the traditions of the elders they could be totally righteous. However Yahshua spoke the following to demonstrate just how “Narrow” was the way of Salvation that could only be received by the “Chesed” favour of YAHWEH and not by their works:
MattithYahu (Matthew) 5: 27-28 “You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
Yahshua in revealing the difficulty of being without sin which makes the path of redemption come down to the favour of YAHWEH which we know is in him so as to direct all those who desire righteousness to find it in him without neglecting the Torah which is still the way of righteous living.
- The Wide or Broad:
This Word is the Word “M’ruachot- thfrm ” with some interesting truths:
H7305 from the Blue letter Bible: Means space, respite, and enlargement.
What is most amazing is that the root word is “Ruach” which means Spirit (H7305- H7308).
With this understanding we can say that Yahshua is saying that the way of Destruction has been widened by these evil Spirits (Ruachot). By the work of Ha Satan the way of Destruction is broader since Scripture says:
Romans 9:27 Yeshiyahu (Isaiah) also cries out concerning Yisrael: “Though the number of the children of Yisrael be as the sand of the sea, the remnant will be saved.
Though in the Natural Yeshiyahu (Isaiah) was speaking in the P’shat or direct about the returning Yisraelites from the exile when only 43,360 people returned from Babylon while many were enticed to remain within the prosperity of Babylon as it is today, on the other hand Sha’ul is writing in the “Darash” or comparison of those that are truly saved since Yisrael is notably a reference to those in Covenant whether in a physical or Spiritual sense. This reminds us of the Words of Yahshua:
MattithYahu (Matthew) 7:21- 23 “Not everyone who says to Me, Adoni, Adoni(Lord, Lord), shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, Adoni, Adoni (Lord, Lord), have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
The practising of Lawlessness is equivalent to being without Torah. To do the will of the Father is to be obedient to his Word the Torah but not to do as these were doing though the works appear honourable as representing him but these people still had no love for him in their heart because they did not know his heart which is his Torah. We must consider carefully to whom Yahshua is referring in these verses. We must ask ourselves who in the World is doing the Works of healing and casting out of Demons but not doing the will of the Father which is clearly revealed in his Torah since Yahshua did not come to abolish Torah.
Sadly the modern Church has tried to broaden the way of Salvation by simply focussing on Yahshua (Jesus) but has neglected the path to him which has always been the Torah as he is its goal. The verses in Chazon (Revelation) 14 & 22 previously Quoted in slide 10 however challenge that thought and should be seriously considered.
- H’abdun or Abadon
Strong’s Number H12 – meaning Destruction or known in Hebrew as “Abadon” (Nfdba) or in Greek as “Apollyon”.
Referenced in the following:
Esther 9:5Thus the JewsH3064 smoteH5221 allH3605 their enemiesH341 with the strokeH4347 of the sword,H2719 and slaughter,H2027 and destruction,H12 and didH6213 what they wouldH7522 unto those that hatedH8130 them.
Chazon (Revelation) 9:11 And they had as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, but in Greek he has the name Apollyon.
What we see is the hidden teaching in the Hebrew language that is never revealed in the English since Yahshua is teaching that there are Spirits (Ruachot) working to widen and to bring many to destruction and through the above verse we know that this is a Malakim (Angel) who is also known as the Angel of death:
1 Corinthians 15:25-26 For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy that will be destroyed is death.
We are talking about a being that was cast out of Heaven with Heylel or Ha Satan:
Chazon (Revelation) 20:14 Then Death and Hades (Sheol) were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
- Ashar or Asher
This word is the name of one of the Tribes of Yisrael and can mean to walk straight, upright & knowing you are on the right path or Derek (the way). Alternately it can mean to be happy.
We could say that people are happily walking into destruction thinking they are upright like those who think they are righteous as in MattithYahu 7:22. Yahshua also said that these will deliver you up thinking they are doing the right thing therefore the broad road is full of people who think they are doing righteousness and this is not about just unbelievers. Sha’ul (Paul) understood that he was one of these before the favour of YAHWEH found him.
1 Timothy 1:15 This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it: “Yahshua the Messiah came into the world to save sinners”—and I am the worst of them all.
- M’tsuq or Mutsaq
Strong’s Number H6693 – meaning to oppress or distress.
The reason the way is hard pressed is that the enemy is oppressing & obstructing the way to the gate because Yahshua said that those that endure to the end will be saved.
- Mathy’m or M’atiym
Strong’s Number H4962- The root word is Math and means few as in Mankind therefore a few of Mankind in a limited time frame.
From this one verse by using the understanding of the Hebrew & its root words imbedded within we come to some interesting conclusions:
- This teaching reveals to us that the Gate to life is Narrow but also that we are hard pressed on every side but we also know that the Favour of YAHWEH is with us through his RUACH (Spirit) and by his strength we will endure.
- Though the path & the Gate is Narrow we have been given the revelation of the path being the Torah that has narrowed the way to the Gate but we have the Key to the Gate being Yahshua the joy of our life for through him & his Torah has the way been cleared of all obstacles since he promises blessing and Salvation in this life and the World to come if we are faithful.