|Church School Lesson: Come In|
July 22, 2018
Background: Matthew 7:15-23; Luke 13:22-30; Print: Luke 13:22-30
Key Verse: Luke 13:24; Devotional: Psalm 1
Luke 13:22-30 (NKJV)
22 And He went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem.
23 Then one said to Him, "Lord, are there few who are saved?" And He said to them,
24 "Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.
25 When once the Master of the house has risen up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying, 'Lord, Lord, open for us,' and He will answer and say to you, 'I do not know you, where you are from,'
26 then you will begin to say, 'We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets.'
27 But He will say, 'I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.'
28 There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out.
29 They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit down in the kingdom of God.
30 And indeed there are last who will be first, and there are first who will be last."
Luke Chapter 13 (Commentary)
13:22: This is the second time Luke reminds us that Jesus was intentionally going to Jerusalem (the other time is in 9:51). Jesus knew he was on his way to die, but he continued preaching to large crowds. The prospect of death did not deter Jesus from his mission.
13:24, 25: Finding salvation requires more concentrated effort than most people are willing to put forth. Obviously we cannot save ourselves--there is no way we can work ourselves into God's favor. We "work hard to enter" through the narrow door by earnestly desiring to know Jesus and diligently striving to follow him whatever the cost. We dare not put off making this decision because the door will not stay open forever.
13:26, 27: The people were eager to know who would be in God's Kingdom. Jesus explained that, although many people know something about God, only a few have acknowledged their sins and accepted his forgiveness. We may not necessarily see the people we expect to find in the Kingdom of God. Some perfectly respectable religious leaders claiming allegiance to Jesus will not be there because they were not true followers and secretly were morally corrupt. Just listening to Jesus' words or admiring his miracles is not enough. We must turn from sin and trust in God to save us.
13:29: God's Kingdom will include people from every part of the world. Israel's rejection of Jesus as Messiah would not stop God's plan. True Israel includes all people who believe in Christ. This was an important fact for Luke to stress as he was directing his Good News to a Gentile audience (see also Romans 4:16-25; Galatians 3:6-9).
13:30: God's Kingdom will have many surprises. Some who are despised now will be greatly honored then; some influential people here will be left outside the gates. Many "great" people on this earth (in God's eyes) are virtually ignored by the rest of the world. What matters to God is not a person's earthly popularity, status, wealth, heritage, or power but his or her commitment to Christ. How do your values match those of the Bible? Put God in first place, and you will join people from all over the world who will take their places at the feast in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Life Application Study Bible.