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Matthew 7:13-27

Background: Jesus went throughout Galilee teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the Kingdom of God and healing every kind of disease and sickness among the people to the extent that the report of Him went out into all Syria. People brought to Him all the sick, those that had various diseases, torments, the demon possessed, epileptics, paralytics. And He healed them all. Large crowds followed Him from Galilews, Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea and beyond the Jordan. As crowds of people followed Jesus, He went up on a mountainside, (evidently near Capernaum, {cf Mt 4:23-25)}. There He began to teach His disciples, (those individuals in the crowd who followed Him in the sense of their deciding to adhere to what He taught them - which number is not limited to the Twelve. Note that not everyone in the crowd mentioned in Mt 5:1 was a disciple; and not every disciple of His believed in Him unto eternal life). In this sermon on the mountainside, Jesus taught His disciples about the perfect life of godly righteousness that one should have, (Mt 5:6, 10, 20, 48), in order to (1) receive God's temporal blessings, (Mt 5:3-11, 6:25-33; 7:7-11), (2) be an example to the world of God's righteousness, (Mt 5:14-16); (3) enter the eternal kingdom of God as sons of God to see God, (Mt 5:8-10, 19-22, 29-29); hence not go to eternal destruction in hell, (Mt 5:20-22, 29-30, 7:13-14) and (4) receive eternal rewards such as inheriting the earth and the Kingdom of Heaven, i.e., Kingdom of God, (Mt 5:3, 5, 5:10, 12; 6:1-8, 16-21). Discussion Questions: What are the 2 types of gates mentioned? Where do they both lead one to? What is Jesus trying to teach with this illustration of gate? narrow - a way that would be difficult for even a relatively small man to pass through without some distress. Therefore, In order to enter by the narrow gate 1 must strip himself of many things, such as a consuming desire for earthly goods, the unforgiving spirit, [&] selfishness . . . The narrow gate is therefore the gate of selfdenial & obedience. The wide gate, on the other hand, is the gate of self-indulgence. Nature of right way hard.. What kind of people id talked about in 15-20? As you strive to enter that narrow gate and walk that narrow way . . . o beware of those who would mislead you o Just as there is a misleading gate & a misleading way, there are also misleading . . . teachers who point to [the gate of destruction]. o Just like the false gate and [false] way, they will claim to show the way to heaven and life, but they actually show the way to hell & destruction. o The false gate has false prophets standing in front of it who seek to lead people into the false way and hinder them from entering the truth Matt. 24:11: 2 Peter 2:1: 1 John 4:1: Many preachers & pseudo-Christians proclaim a message of easybelievism and self-help. What imagery s used to describe false prophets? In Palestine, wolves were the most common natural enemy of sheep. They roamed the hills and valleys, looking for a sheep that strayed away from the flock or lagged behind. When a wolf found such a sheep it quickly attacked and tore it to pieces. Even a grown, healthy sheep was utterly defenseless against a wolf. How can I watch for false prophets? 1. Does Scripture drive their message or do they drive the message of Scripture. 2. Do they ever mention the seriousness of sin? 3. Do people leave feeling good about their sin or leave repenting from their sin?

4. Is their popularity based on their appeal and on their soft message? 5. Is there a plea for repentance, or a plea for easy believism? 6. Does the message encourage self-denial or self-indulgence? What is the test to know false prophet? What is fruit? True believers bear the works of their repentance. False teachers bear no fruit and are thus destroyed! Luke 3:8 - JC told the Pharisees & Sadducees who wanted to be baptized to 1 bring forth fruits in keeping with repentance. James 2 tells us that many believe (even demons) but few obey. When we obey, we bear fruit. Who will enter the kingdom and who will not? Who is wise and who is not? What imagery s used?