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The Narrow Way

One of the things that gave weight to the authenticity of Christianity is the fact that its followers were persecuted. The martyrs who marched to their deaths in arenas and burning stakes never died for anything that was vague or iffy. They knew what they were giving their lives for.

However much of the Christian world today has become so gray in matters of right and wrong that little has been left to stand for. The rules of right and wrong seem to have changed in favor of Tolerance, or trying to go to where people are. Jesus did go to where people were but He did not leave them where they were, but always called them to follow Him and leave the old life behind.

Elton Trueblood in calling this gray mindset a "Tolerant Pantheism" said: "People never oppose that which is vague" Christianity is the opposite of vague. It is not some nebulous cloud of ideas people hold to , but is plain and so clear that by its very nature it creates opponents. When I speak of Christianity coming under attack, I do not mean persecution because of foolishness done in the name of Christianity, but persecution for following Jesus.

Has our Christianity become so unclear that we no longer have to fear persecution, but are welcomed with open arms as just another view to tolerate? Or put another way, if our faith is not worth dying for that what are we living for?

The whole idea of the narrow way Jesus spoke of is that it is not for the gray and ambiguous which represents the wide gate, but for those whose lives would funnel down into living the sermon on the mount. The narrow way is constricting only to the flesh that always seeks a way out instead of a way in. It is neither legalistic or law driven, but is people and God driven. The love for God and our fellow man is the goal. This is one part of becoming like Jesus. The other part is the consequences of following Him.

Matthew 10:2425 (NRSV) 24 A disciple is not above the teacher, nor a slave above the master; 25 it is enough for the disciple to be like the teacher, and the slave like the master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household!

The one test that something is clear and specific whether its good or bad is that draws harassment. It becomes polarizing as people either love it or hate it. I believe those martyred for Christ in communist countries and the middle east were killed because they had a clear faith. I wonder however if it were a western Christian in the same place with an unclear faith, would they even be noticed enough to be opposed?