Susan Lafferty on Entering the Narrow Door of Salvation

Susan Lafferty is a writer and blogs at She spent 27 years in Asia with the International Mission Board. Her husband Todd now serves as executive vice president of the IMB. 

The question lingers through the centuries. Around the world. In religious gatherings. And institutions of learning. City streets. Local hangouts.

And I read it in the Scriptures. The unnamed someone asks Jesus in Luke 13:23, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?”

Only a few? We hear the concern in our day. Are you saying not everyone goes to heaven? Isn’t that narrow-minded? How can a God of love do that?

But here Jesus doesn’t answer the “only a few” question.

He speaks of the urgency. The all-in. The action required.

“Make every effort to enter through the narrow door …” (13:24).

This is not a drill. This is not something to put off until later.”… Because I tell you, many will try to enter and won’t be able once the homeowner gets up and shuts the door” (13:24f).

People wait. Avoid. Reject. Resist the inclusive invitation to the exclusive Way. And find themselves knocking on the narrow door. The closed narrow door.

And what He shuts, no one can open.

“Lord, open up for us!”

“I don’t know you or where you’re from” (13:25).

They try to make a case for why they should be allowed in. Now.

“We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets” (13:26).

We were right there at the table. Hanging out with You, Jesus.

But salvation by association? It doesn’t work that way in the Kingdom of God.

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Source: Baptist Press