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Luke 13:22-30

Sunday Morning Bible Study

June 26, 2016


Do people see Jesus? Is the gospel preached? Does it address the person who is: Empty, lonely, guilty, or afraid to die?  Does it speak to the broken hearted? Does it build up the church? Milk – Meat – Manna Preach for a decision Is the church loved? Regular:  2900 words    Communion: 2500 words  Video=75wpm

Luke was a doctor and a traveling companion of the apostle Paul.

He wrote this book while Paul was in prison.

In writing this book about Jesus, Luke made use of other older documents like the Gospel of Mark, as well as extensive eyewitness accounts.

This Thursday Night in the Truth Project, we begin a two week look at the subject of Science:

Video: Truth Project – Tour Five part 1

Jesus’ ministry is well under way, and the people have been amazed not just at the things He’s been teaching, but the things He’s been doing.

13:22-30 The Narrow Gate

:22 And He went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem.

went throughdiaporeuomai – to cause to pass through a place; to journey through a place, go through


villageskome – the common sleeping place to which laborers in the field return, a village

journeyingporeia – a journey; a going, that is: purpose, pursuit, undertaking

Wiersbe suggests that Luke 13:22-17:10 take place in Perea, which is in modern Jordan, east of the Jordan River. 

The Lexham Bible Dictionary says that Perea was one of the routes pilgrims took on their way to Jerusalem from Galilee, to avoid going through Samaria.

My question is that it would seem that Jesus would have had to back track by Luke 17:10 because He will spend some time going through Samaria as well.

:23 Then one said to Him, “Lord, are there few who are saved?” And He said to them,

fewoligos – little, small, few; of number: multitude, quantity, or size

savedsozo – to save, keep safe and sound, to rescue from danger or destruction; to save in the technical biblical sense.

Present passive participle – continuous present action

:23 Lord, are there few who are saved?

The religious scholars liked to discuss this question.

Jesus isn’t going to answer the question, “How many will be saved?”, but He will respond by asking, “Are you saved?”



I think that today some people aren’t sure what it actually means to be “saved”?
While there are times in the Old Testament where “saved” refers to deliverance from an earthly enemy or army, it shifts when we get to the New Testament.
Here are some New Testament ideas:
God’s kingdom

When Jesus returns, He will set up an earthly kingdom, and only those who are “saved” will be a part of this kingdom.

We will see this concept being used in our passage today (Luke 13:28)

(Luke 13:28 NKJV) 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.

Saved from hell

When the Bible talks about “perishing”, it doesn’t mean that you die and your life is over, “perishing” refers to an eternity in hell.

In our passage today, those in hell are “weeping and gnashing their teeth”.

Hell was designed for the devil and his angels, but it will also be the place where unbelievers will go, as the correct payment for their sins.

Payment for sins requires a perfect sacrifice.

This is why you need Jesus, because you CAN’T pay for your own sins, you need a Savior to pay for your sins.  Only Jesus was a perfect sacrifice.

Jesus said,

(John 3:16 NKJV) For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Eternal Life

Even though technically every human being who was ever born will live “forever”,

The New Testament concept of “eternal life” is used to describe those who will live forever with God.

Unbelievers will also continue to exist forever, but they will exist in hell.

On Thursday night, we looked at this verse:

(John 17:3 NKJV) And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

Eternal life comes from “knowing”, from having an intimate relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

:24 “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.

:24 Strive to enter

strive agonizomai – to enter a contest: contend in the gymnastic games; to contend with adversaries, fight; struggle, with difficulties and dangers

Though we don’t get into heaven because we have worked hard, we need to work hard to make sure we get into heaven.  Going to heaven isn’t something that we ought to take a half-hearted approach to.  It isn’t something that we ought to put off for “another day”.

:24 the narrow gate

I did a wedding yesterday, held in a beautiful backyard.

The only way into the backyard was through a gate, a narrow gate.

The gate was so narrow that the father of the bride and the bride had to come through separately before he could escort her down the aisle.

The “gate” into heaven is also narrow – only allowing one person in at a time.

You can’t get in on your parent’s coattails.
You can’t get in because you’re an “American”.
You can only get in by yourself, by you trusting in Jesus.

narrow stenos – narrow, strait

gatepule – a gate; metaph. the access or entrance into any state

be ableischuo – to be strong; to have power; to exert, wield power, to have strength to overcome; to be a force, avail; to be able, can

:24 many…will seek to enter and will not be able

will seek zeteo – to seek in order to find; to seek a thing

We usually consider it a “good” thing to be “seeking”.
But here it isn’t enough to be a “seeker”.  God is looking for “strivers”.  Not those who are trying to earn their way to heaven, but those who are going to work hard to make sure they are going through the right gate.
Some churches have adopted the phrase “seeker sensitive”.  Perhaps we ought to start a new trend and become a “striver sensitive” church.


Fewer than you think

There is a belief in the world that just about everyone and their dog will make it to heaven.
Some people who think it doesn’t matter who your “god” is, as long as you are pretty good in this life…

Video:  The Truth Project 04 – Views on who God is

Do “all roads lead to heaven”?  Jesus will tell you that’s a bit too wide of a gate.
Earlier in His ministry, Jesus taught,

(Matthew 7:13–14 NKJV) —13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

There is only One Way into heaven, and it’s through Jesus.
That may sound narrow-minded to some, but listen closely, I didn’t make up the rules.  Jesus did.
Jesus said,

(John 14:6 NKJV) Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

He also said,

(John 10:7–10 NKJV) —7 Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.


Suppose you decided to go to Hawaii for vacation this year.  You buy your tickets, you go through airport security, and you finally get your seat on the plane.

Then the pilot gets on the intercom to welcome you to the flight and declares to you that he’s decided not to be so “narrow-minded”.  He knows that Hawaii is “that-a-ways”, so he’s turning off his navigation equipment and we’re all going to fly off in that general direction.

Would you want to run screaming to get off that plane?

Video:  Is Math the Only Way - BelAirDrama
Why is Jesus narrow-minded?
Because He’s the only one with the solution.
Our problem is that we are all sinners.
Our sin has cut us off from God.
For God to forgive us and still be a “just” God, someone would have to pay the price for our sins.
Paying for sin requires a perfect sacrifice, and only Jesus qualifies as the perfect sacrifice because He didn’t sin.

When Jesus died on the cross, He was being your sacrifice.  He paid for your sins.

Now all God requires of men is to accept the free gift of eternal life that He offers to those who will believe in Him.

Have you received God’s free gift?

: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,’

the master of the houseoikodespotes (“house” + “master”) – master of the house, householder

shutapokleio – to shut up

doorthura – a door; used of any opening like a door, an entrance, way or passage into; the door of the kingdom of heaven (likened to a palace) denotes the conditions which must be complied with in order to be received into the kingdom of God

you beginarchomai – to be the first to do (anything), to begin; to begin, make a beginning

Aorist middle subjunctive

knockkrouo – to knock: at the door

knoweido – to see; to perceive with the eyes; to know; to know of anything; to know, i.e. get knowledge of, understand, perceive; to see with the mind’s eye, signifies a clear and purely mental perception

wherepothen – of place: from where, from what condition; of origin or source: from what author or giver; of cause: how is that?, how can that be?

:25 risen up and shut the door

Jesus is describing a time when God will close the door to heaven.


Too late

There are some things in life that you will have problems with if you’re too late.
If you arrive at the airport ten minutes before your flight leaves, you’re too late.
If you are a kindergarten teacher and one of your students has to go to the bathroom, you better help them before it’s too late.
If you have tickets to the Angels’ game this afternoon, and you don’t go until tonight, you’ll be too late.
The same goes when it comes to your ticket to heaven.  The point here is that there will be a time when the “door to heaven” will be shut.
It took Noah a few years to build the ark, and during that time that Noah warned the world about the coming flood.  Peter called Noah a “preacher of righteousness” (2Pet. 2:5)

(2 Peter 2:5 NKJV) —5 and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly;

But there came a day when the rain came, and God shut the door of the ark on Noah, his family, and the animals they had collected (Gen. 7:16).  It was too late for everyone else.

(Genesis 7:16 NKJV) So those that entered, male and female of all flesh, went in as God had commanded him; and the Lord shut him in.

When you die, it will be too late, the door will be closed.
(Hebrews 9:27 NKJV) And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,

There are no second chances after you die.  Only judgment.

The choice you make before you die determines where you go when you die.

Jesus told the parable,
(Matthew 25:1–13 NKJV) —1 “Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2 Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. 3 Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, 4 but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5 But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. 6 “And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ 7 Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the wise answered, saying, ‘No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ 10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. 11 “Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ 12 But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13 “Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.

Oil in the Bible is universally a picture of the Holy Spirit.  It seems that in this picture, some people had the Holy Spirit, and some did not.  Instead of being ready for the bridegroom with their lamps filled with oil, they put off the importance of being ready.  They tried to rely on the oil that others had, but this wouldn’t be good enough.  They needed their own.  In a sense, this is like people who will even come to church, but will never take that one step of really asking Jesus to be a part of their lives.

The Spanish composer Manuel de Falla was notorious for not answering his mail. When he heard that a friend had died, the composer said, “What a pity! He died before I answered his letter, which he sent me five years ago!”
Here's the challenge.
Some of you may have been putting off turning your life over to Jesus.  Don’t wait until it’s too late.  Do it today.
Others of us have been putting off talking to our friends or family about Jesus.

We too have no guarantee of tomorrow.  You could die.  They could die.  Don’t wait until it’s too late.

:26 then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets.’

streetsplateia – a broad way, a street

: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.’

:26 We ate and drank in Your presence

your presenceenopion – in the presence of, before; of occupied place: in that place which is before, or over against, opposite, any one and towards which another turns his eyes

These are the people that Jesus has been ministering to as He’s traveled throughout Israel. They will have this idea that because they were around when Jesus lived, that they will have some kind of special privileges.


Close isn’t good enough

Going to McDonald’s doesn’t make you a hamburger. 
Going to Krispy Kreme doesn’t make you a donut (or a cop). 
Going to Angels Stadium doesn’t make you Mike Trout. 
Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian.
I would imagine that there are people who think that because they go to church, eat and drink the Communion elements, and listen to the teaching of the Word, that they are Christians. Ain’t so.
The Bible says,
(John 1:12 NKJV) But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:
Jesus said,
(Revelation 3:20 NKJV) Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.
There must be a time where a person actually chooses to follow Jesus.  They must cross the line of being a spectator and jump onto the playing field. 
You must choose to turn from your sins.
You must open your heart to Jesus.
You must choose to follow and obey Jesus.

knoweido – to see; to perceive with the eyes; to know; to know of anything; to know, i.e. get knowledge of, understand, perceive; to see with the mind’s eye, signifies a clear and purely mental perception

wherepothen – of place: from where, from what condition; of origin or source: from what author or giver; of cause: how is that?, how can that be?

departaphistemi – to make stand off, cause to withdraw, to remove; to stand off, to stand aloof; to go away, to depart from anyone; to desert, withdraw from one

Aorist active imperative

workersergates – a workman, a labourer; usually one who works for hire esp. an agricultural worker; one who does, a worker, perpetrator

iniquityadikia – injustice, of a judge; unrighteousness of heart and life; a deed violating law and justice, act of unrighteousness

:27 Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity

It’s possible that the Master of the House (God) is quoting from –

(Psalm 6:8 NKJV) Depart from me, all you workers of iniquity; For the Lord has heard the voice of my weeping.
(Psalm 119:115 NKJV) Depart from me, you evildoers, For I will keep the commandments of my God!


Is it real?

Jesus rejects these people.  Even though they can claim to have hung around him, eating, drinking, and being taught, He replies that He doesn’t know them.
The only significant clue Jesus gives us as to the reason He doesn’t know these people is that they are called “workers of iniquity”.
These are people who are “doing bad things”.
Jesus said,
(Matthew 7:21–27 NKJV) —21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘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, ‘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!’

You see the same thing said here.

People who claim to know God, but live lives of constantly doing the wrong things might not be true believers.

24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. 26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”

It is not enough to just call Jesus “Lord”, or even listen to His words.

He is looking for people who will actually do what He says.

It is not even enough to do “churchy” things like prophesy, cast out demons, or do wonderful works.  What is important is learning to do what God wants you to do.

The two house builders both “heard” the sayings of Jesus, but only one acted upon them.

Simply repeating the words of a prayer isn’t going to save you if you don’t really believe in what you’re saying.
The only way to know if it’s real is by seeing if anything ever starts to change.
When you truly open your heart to God, He puts His Spirit in you, and the Spirit is not going to be comfortable with the sin in your life.
He’s going to start making you uncomfortable with your sin as well.
Do real Christians sin?
Yes.  All real Christians continue to wrestle and struggle with sin.  We all still have a sin nature we struggle with.

Paul the apostle wrote,

(Romans 7:19 NLT) I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway.

The question isn’t whether you sin or not, the question is whether you want to change.

If you have no desire to change, there’s a problem.

Some people accept Christ, and they stop drinking or doing drugs immediately without ever looking back.  Praise God.

But some of us didn’t quit so easily.

If you can’t stop your sin, but you want to, you may be “addicted” to your sin.

But that doesn’t mean there’s no hope.

It means you have to find what it takes to change.

Do something about your sin.  Take your sin seriously.

It might mean something as simple as confessing your struggle to a more mature Christian who can pray with you.

It might mean you need to get serious and join something like a Twelve Step program (like Sunday Night’s James Gang) and do whatever it takes to stop your addiction.

I hope I’ve made some of you uncomfortable today.
It is good to examine yourself to see if you are a real Christian.
Paul wrote,

(2 Corinthians 13:5 NKJV) Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified.

While I don’t believe we ought to be going through our whole lives wondering about our salvation, it’s not a bad thing every once in a while to be sure that you are “in the faith”.

: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.

weepingklauthmos – weeping, lamentation

gnashingbrugmos – a gnashing of teeth; used to denote extreme anguish and utter despair of men consigned to eternal punishment in hell; snarling, growling: in the sense of biting

thrustekballo – to cast out, drive out, to send out

Present passive participle

:28 There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth

Hell is not a mindless passing into oblivion.  It involves eternal torment.

It would be a horrible thing for the Jewish crowd before Jesus to see people like Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, their beloved ancestors, go into the kingdom while they don’t.

:29 They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit down in the kingdom of God.

they will comeheko – to have come, have arrived, be present. Future indicative tense, this is something that will definitely happen in the future, not just a suggestion.

eastanatole – a rising (of the sun and stars); the east (the direction of the sun’s rising)

westdusme – the setting of the sun; the region of the sunset, the west

northborrhas– Boreas, the north-north-east wind; the north

southnotos – the south wind; the south, the southern quarter

shall sit down anaklino – to lean against, lean upon; to lay down; to make or bid to recline

This is a term generally used to describe people reclining at a table to eat.

(Luke 13:29 ESV) And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God.

:30 And indeed there are last who will be first, and there are first who will be last.”

lasteschatos – extreme; last in time or in place; last in a series of places; last in a temporal succession; the last; of rank, grade of worth, last i.e. lowest

firstprotos – first in time or place; in any succession of things or persons; first in rank; influence, honour

:29 east … west … north … south

The point is that these Jewish people who lived in Jesus’ day would not make it into the kingdom, but people from all around the world, presumably Gentiles, would.

:30 last who will be first

There will be Gentiles (whom the Jews would consider the “last”) who will make it into the kingdom of God.

:30 first who will be last

There will be Jews (the “first”) who will reject the Messiah and not make it into the kingdom.

:29 east … west … north … south


More than you think

While some make the way to heaven too broad, others make it too narrow.
They have the idea that only their select group, their little sect, will enter into heaven.
Jesus is telling the Jews that there will be people in heaven they wouldn’t expect.
Be careful about judging other people who don’t go to the same church as you do.
Be careful about judging people you don’t like, or who bother you, people who struggle with certain sin issues, or who aren’t as spiritual as you and then you say, “Well they are not really saved”.
What will you find when you get to heaven?
St. Peter is very busy in Heaven, so he leaves a sign by the Pearly Gates: “For Service Ring Bell.” Away he goes; he barely gets started when BING! the bell rings. He rushes back to the gates, but no one’s there.
St. Peter goes back to work when suddenly BING! the bell rings again. He rushes back to the gates, but no one’s there. A little annoyed, St. Peter goes back to work.
Suddenly, BING! the bell rings again. St. Peter goes back; again, no one’s there. “Okay, that’s it,” St. Peter says. “I’m going to hide and watch to see what’s going on.” So St. Peter hides, and a moment later, a little old man walks up and rings the bell.
St. Peter jumps out and yells, “Aha! Are you the guy who keeps ringing the bell?”
“Yes, that’s me,” the little old man says.
“Well, why do you keep ringing the bell and going away?” St. Peter asks.
“They keep resuscitating me,” he replies.
I think that for some of us, our relationship with Jesus seems like that little old man – one day we’re saved, the next we’re not.
I don’t think that is a healthy way to walk with Jesus.
God wants you to settle it today that you are saved.
(1 John 5:11–13 NKJV) —11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

Do you believe?  Have you given your life to Jesus?

If you are struggling with a certain sin, make today the day you decide you’re going to do whatever it takes to stop.

:30 last who will be first

Have you thought that you are the “last” person to ever become a Christian?

Maybe today is your day.