I have been reading news of the horrendous treatment Christians living in North Korea are receiving. This is not new within the borders of North Korea, but as people who once persecuted step forward we learn more of life under Kim Jong-un.
One statement that struck me was from a ex-military guard at the political camps. He said that those men and women who walk through the gates are never meant to be released; they are sentenced for a life of hard labor until they die of exhaustion, malnutrition, disease, abuse, or execution.
Therefore Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep. All who ever came before me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.”
Jesus is the gate, and those who walk through Him are given eternal life. In this earthly life, we will have trials and persecutions. Yet through Jesus, our Gate, we have peace with God, joy by the Spirit, and ultimately Heaven through the Son. How different this gate is than those in the North Korean prisons.
Kim Jong-un demands that the people of North Korea believe that he is the one who controls their destiny. In America, we are told that there are many gates through which a person may be saved: through the gates of Islam or Buddha, man-made rules or even through self-effort. But this is not true. Salvation comes though one gate: Jesus Christ.
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Matthew 7:13-14.
The narrow path must be a walk of repentance that leads to faith in the One who died for us. A narrow path is always hard to walk. Weeds and growth along the way try to overtake that path, and rocks and grooves don’t allow for sure footing. But do not become disheartened.
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I HAVE OVERCOME THE WORLD.
This Easter, consider the path you walk. Is it one of ease or difficulty? The path that Jesus walked to Calvary was one of rejection, self-denial and death, so too will be the path of His disciples, but it was also the path that led to victory.