The narrow gate and the narrow way is the way to the Kingdom. This leads to big life, the eternal life. Noah heard God about things to come. He listened to warning and prepared the Ark to save his family. Can we live on our knees and let Word speak to us? (Matthew 7:13-15; Genesis 6:8; Hebrews 11:7)
Speaker: Thomas Schaller, Szombor Szuk
6:30 PM on 11/12/2023
P. Schaller –
Years ago when
we moved to Hungary, we did outreach and one of the – we had an 8X11 piece of paper and
maybe half of it was, you know, about our meeting in small print. It was taped up in a subway
stop. And Esther was coming up the escalator, and she was just kind of like – there’s a big room.
It’s a subway. And she just went over to that piece of paper and read the address, wrote it
down, and came to our meeting. She was in one of our first Bible school semesters. We had 16
students, and she was one of them.
And then Bendeguz came into the church, and he was a young guy. Esther was also a missionary
in Baku, graduated, and then she married Bendeguz. Then they had a son, and this is Szombor
over here. And so, Szombor in Hungary growing up and learning and being in the ministry and
then by faith coming here to go to Bible school. And I just watched his faith and what’s in his
heart. That God’s giving him grace. God is loving him, and he’s made great decisions to be here
and to study and to follow the Lord with all his heart. So, he’s going to share with us tonight.
Thank you. Let’s start off with a word of prayer because I need it. (Prayer). A while
ago, P. Scibelli once asked me, how are you doing? I just said, I’m just learning to trust God right
now. He said, yeah. We’re all learning that to the end of our lives. I was like, Praise God! Cause
am I the only one here? Am I the only one learning to trust God sometimes? He’s like, no. We’re
all learning to do that. I was like, Praise God!
Trusting God. What a huge subject. If you would turn with me to Psalm 145 for just a quick
second. Vs. 17-18. Do we dare to believe this? Do I dare to believe that God is righteous in all
his ways? And that he is kind in all his works? Do I always see that in my life? The answer is
maybe, no. I don’t know. There’s this amazing story in John if you would turn with me. John
11:3-5, amazing. You can say this tonight. Now, Jesus loves me. Okay. Jesus loves me this I
know. The first song we learned. What’s the next verse? Vs. 6. What? I thought you just said
you love them? You love me? But it says, no. He stayed there for two more days.
God, the one whom you love is sick? Are you going to come and help? Yeah, I love him. Give us
a confirmation. It doesn’t just say Jesus whom you love is ill, but it says that Jesus loved them.
We know for sure that Jesus loved them. It says he stayed there for two more days. Do I dare to
believe what we just read in Psalm 145 that God is righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works
after reading this? I could be shocked. God, are you kind in all your ways?
Would you turn with me over to Matthew 27:41-43. We all know how the story ended. It says if you
trust in God, let God deliver him if he desires him. Do I know in Song of Solomon that his desire
is for me? he desires me and maybe I trust God a little bit. A tiny bit. We’re learning to trust
God. It says if you trust God, let God deliver him. Isn’t this so often we see or maybe the
projections in your head say this? Psalm 3 is a great example of this. Many rise against me and
say where is your God? Will he save you now? Do you get those kinds of thoughts or is that just me cause I do get them? Do you trust in God? Will he save you? It’s a big question. If you trust
God, God’s desire is for him and he will save him? Do I dare to believe that God is righteous in
all his ways and kind in all his works?
I think it all depends on this. What P. Schaller is saying like do I, can I think these things outside.
That’s what Psalm 3 talks about. We can even turn there if you want to. Psalm 3, amazing
psalm. It says in vs. 3. Many say there’s no salvation in God, but it says but you. But you O Lord,
but God. The greatest perhaps two words in the Bible, “But God.” We were dead in trespasses
and sins. But God. All these things. Many come against me. Many rise against me. But God. But
And I trust him that he over and over says in the Bible in Psalm 119:38 that he appoints his
testimonies in righteousness and in all faithfulness. Do I dare to meditate on those testimonies
that God has done in my life. Or again in Psalm 25 it says that all the paths of the Lord are
steadfast love and faithfulness. All. Every single one of them. And what happened in John 11?
What happened in Matthew 28? Matthew 27 and 28? What happened later in John 11? We
saw something amazing. And this is also what Jesus said in John 9. Why is he sick? Why is he
blind? Why can’t he see? I don’t know. Why do I have this trouble in my life right now? Why do
I have this? Why is this going on or that going on?
And I cry to God and God stays there for two more days? What? But isn’t this the idea behind
the whole thing perhaps that God is teaching me these things little by little, line upon line, here
a little, there a little? That God is faithful. That we’ll learn to trust him. That I will trust him that
all his ways are kind and faithful to me. When I thought my foot slipped, your steadfast love
upheld me. Come on. God is teaching us tonight to trust him more and more. And maybe I
don’t see him.
It says if you trust him, save him from the cross. But maybe God is teaching me tonight to
embrace that cross. Andrew said this one time and I’ll never forget it. If the cross can satisfy
God, how can it not satisfy me? And amen to that. If God accepted, it completely satisfied God,
– the cross – how can it leave me unsatisfied? And God is teaching me through this that pastor
what we heard again and again and thank you for all of our pastors and all our teachers who
teach about the cross to us.
Yes, there is this cross, but guess what? In 1 Corinthians 15, it says we are buried in weakness and
raised in power. That is we’re buried in perishable and raised in imperishable. That all these
things are put to death. They’re perishable. They’re weak. I’m a slave to them. All these things
in my life I try to hold on, but it says if I dare to go to that cross, I’ll be raised in power and
raised in imperishable. Come on.
And I can learn through these trials in my life and maybe the tests that God is faithful in all his
ways, and he is righteous and he is kind and his desire is for me and he loves me very much and
I can learn to depend on him. And as P. Schaller says it, we can just come here to the closet and
be satisfied with God and I know, I know that he is kind in all of his ways and faithful in all of his
works, right? Amen.
P. Schaller –
Okay. You may be seated. Let’s turn in the Word. Hey! Isn’t it fun just to be here?
Just fun. Just encouraging. Szombor gave an excellent – God answered his prayer, didn’t he?
Our prayer. Wow. You know, to think that God raising up somebody from Hungary, somebody
from Poland, somebody from Finland, somebody in Ghana, somebody in Peru; to think that God
does that. Isn’t that amazing? That’s our prayer and all servants. Male and female.
We spoke this morning about entering into the closet and shutting the door. And that was two
weeks ago I believe and then this morning. Tonight, I want to touch on a few things regarding
that. This is from Matthew 7:13. I think the best way to preach this message is to have you talk back
to me and help me. I mean I know what I want to do, but I want you to enjoy it. This is vs. 13.
This is English Standard Version (ESV). Vs. 14. All right. Narrow gate. Narrow way. I want to give
you a warning for all of us. I felt it in my own heart. I don’t like the narrow way. I don’t like it. I
like the big, broad way. How about you? Over here is a man of God and he said, nope. Nope.
There are people they don’t like it what we preach, what we teach, what we believe. They don’t
like it. And then you like it when you enter into the closet, and you are in communion with God.
God can tell you things and put them in your heart, and when you go back out, you just say the
way is narrow to get in there, but after you get in there it’s very broad cause it’s God. Who
could be broader than God? How could it be any better? The entry is narrow.
He goes, no. I don’t want to be an evangelical. I don’t want to be carrying my Bible around with
me. I don’t want to be submitted to the Bible. I don’t want to have a narrow view on anything. I
want to be open and wide and everybody maybe one day all of us will go to heaven. Maybe
every religion is okay. It’s okay. Just don’t talk to me about a narrow way. Don’t show me. Don’t
tell me the way is narrow. That’s how it is. So now, turn to your neighbor and talk about that
and ask them and be honest. Do you like the narrow way or the broad way.
Maybe today you like the narrow way because you’re in the church, but this weekend you like the broad way.
All right. Listen. I guarantee you. I guarantee you. I guarantee you there were people sitting
here 20 years ago and they would say I want the narrow way. I found the narrow way. I went
into the presence of God. I was in these meetings. I had prayer meetings in my house. I had so
much joy and satisfaction and that’s how they lived. I guarantee you. And then they changed,
and they said I want the broad way. I don’t want to hear it. I don’t ever want to go to that church again. That’s a cult. I don’t ever want to go. I don’t want to believe like those people. I
do not want to do that again. That’s real.
Look at Matthew 7:15. I’m not saying those people are false prophets. That’s not my point. My point
is that the world is against this narrow way. The world has a lot to say about us in the narrow
way. Our whole culture is cultivating and developing the broad way. It is so broad that a little
girl can be a little boy. That’s how wild it is and how crazy it is. You can interpret reality any way
you want to, but don’t believe in Christ. You can be New Age this and New Age that and
witchcraft this and witchcraft that. You can believe anything. You can tear up the Bible into
little pieces. You can cut it and change it and do all kinds of things.
For centuries it’s been done. Voltaire. Thomas Jefferson had his own Bible. He cut out all the
miracles and all the declarations of Christ being the Son of God and he had his own Bible.
Always there has been the broad way. And the broad way, they like it. They live in it. That’s how
they live. And they don’t like us, what we say and what we think. Don’t be surprised that one
day you would change and say I don’t like it either. I don’t want it. I don’t want to go by the
Bible. I don’t want God to tell me things. I don’t want this man to rule over me, Luke 19:14.
That’s the nature of our – that’s our nature. That’s called our sin nature.
That’s called our flesh, and this is called Satan’s strategy. We are not ignorant of his devices, 2 Corinthians 2:11. I don’t know. I have a lot to say about it, but maybe it’s just best to be short about it. Say what I want to say
and then just be happy and go home. I don’t know what to do right now about this. You got to
know. It’s on my heart. It’s been on my heart for a while cause I saw in myself. I have heard it
and I hae seen it and I understand it in many ways cause we have lived this way for decades. I
love the narrow way. I do. It’s the only way I’m satisfied. It’s the only way that makes sense to
By the way, in theology there’s what’s called higher criticism and lower criticism, and basically
it’s an analysis of the writers of the Bible. It’s analyzing historical context and writers and so on
and it’s a science that I have no interest in. I have no interest in it. I never studied it. I touch it
by the things I read. I realize they say this and that, but I have no interest in it because I have a
very different perspective of this book. It’s like the narrow way and then on my knees in prayer
reading it as the Word of God. Now, was this Daniel #1 or Daniel #2? I don’t know what you’re
talking about. I don’t study that. I don’t think like that. I think the book of Daniel is the Word of
God, and I’m down on my knees with the Word of God hearing what God has to say to me in
my heart so that I can live a different way. Okay.
Now, the devil is against this narrow way. Now, let’s go to one example and we’ll look at it and
we’ll finish up here. Look at Genesis 6:7. The Lord is like done. He’s done with the whole creation.
He’s done with man. He’s done with everything he has made. Isn’t that amazing? And then it
says but Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. All right.
So, we have an example here of the broad way that men go. How many millions or what was
the population of the world at the time of Noah? We could say and some Bible teachers say
that it could be there were billions of people on the earth. We don’t know. But how many
found the grace of God, the way of God? There was this one guy.
Now, let’s go to Hebrews 11:7. Praise the Lord. Yep. We have some slides here that break this verse
down, vs. 7. There’s the first part. I think I have six or seven. There’s one, two, three, four, five,
six pieces of this one verse, vs. 7. So, that’s profound. I don’t know what it was about Noah. Did
he come to that closet so to speak? Did he come to that place where the Trinity is talking to
him, and he is saying I’m available. I’m believing you.
God could say, yeah, but the broad way. Everybody goes in the broad way. Don’t you like the
broad way, Noah? Come on. Come on. It’s an easy way. You don’t have to worry about
anything. You don’t have to worry about the Bible or church or the mission or prayer or
anything. Live in the broad way. It’s very easy. Go ahead. Live in the broad way. That’s how you
should live. You should live in the broad way.
But Noah is like saying, like God, I want you. What’s it going to cost me? Your whole life. Your
heart. What do you want? You go the broad way and of course that’s the whole idea of the
devil, because if you go the broad way, these six things mentioned in this verse – let’s look at
them quickly. “By faith, being warned of God.” He was warned of God. Like what did God say in
the closet? Noah, I’m telling you about the future. I’m warning you. It’s coming down. It’s
coming down. And Noah is saying, what do you mean? God is saying it’s not good. It’s not good.
Okay. Bye bye. Done. I’m done. No.
He goes, are you warning me? Are you warning me of judgment? Are you warning me of hell?
Are you warning me that my life could be destroyed? Are you warning me that maybe I’ll be
treading water one day? Are you warning me that you’re bringing it down? Are you warning
me? How are you talking to me? God is saying by faith, Noah, by faith he was there with God,
and he was warned by God. The broad way doesn’t do that. The broad way is not telling you
that you’re going to end up floating face down.
The broad way does not tell you that this drug will take you out or this friendship will break your heart or the coming of Christ is imminent. So, #2. “He was warned of God concerning events that were yet unseen.” This is the standard
version which is what I just said. You know, when you live by faith, God is going to talk to you.
When you live by faith, you’re going to be warned of God. When you live by faith, there’s going
to be things that are going to happen, and God is going to speak. Really. When you live by faith,
God is going to help you in your life. This is what he did.
He was warned of God and then the next slide is this one. “In reverent fear.” Where did that
come from? I don’t know but I’ve had it. How about you? I have a reverent respect. Like are
you kidding me? is this for real? This is what the broad way does not have. The broad way does
not have that reverent fear. They’re just playing a game. It’s like Russian roulette or they’re just
playing a game of odds. It’s probable this or that, but this is another thing that’s happening in
his heart. It’s beautiful. Reverent fear. “He constructed an ark.”
He acted. His faith was transferred to activity. He made an ark cause he had a lot of respect for what he heard. That’s
like us. Maybe nobody is with you in the closet, and you shut the door, but in that closet there
is something going on from the Holy Spirit and you have reverent fear for it. It’s not a joke.
Heaven is real. Hell is real. The ministry is real. The Gospel is real. People’s lives are changed.
Someone like Szombor is ministering to us because of something that happened decades ago in
the hearts of people that made decisions and God’s hand is on that family and he does
something. We are in a closet, and we are saying with reverent fear this mission is a very real
thing. We’re building an ark cause that’s God. God is saying I’m done but I got Noah. Noah is in
a secret place with me. And there is something going on in his heart and I can use him cause
that thing in his heart is sacred. And that’s like the story of your life.
In a way, I’m preaching to the choir because I know your lives. I know you have done this. But
it’s beautiful to rehearse it and think about it what the Lord does. And he’s not done with any of
us. And we are not perfect people. We get discouraged or empty or lonely or hurt or whatever
it is and that’s when you are vulnerable to the broad way, because the broad way will say come
on and be with us. Life is easy. It’s a game. It’s like, come on. Be with us. Don’t take it so – it’s
not heavy. Just relax. Relax. Have your life. Live your life. You don’t need that. In one sense, I
understand what they are saying.
But when I am with them and partying with them, I also look around and say, is this all there is?
Is this all there is? Is this a drinking feast or party time or relationships and what are we talking
about? Where is God in this? God? Pray to God? Waiting on God? No. So we come back, and we
say where is that narrow gate? Where is that way where things are wrong, and God says it’s
wrong and leave it at the door. God says come before me and leave your stuff at the door, at
the cross. Where’s that way where the Spirit will fill me and satisfy me and satisfy my longing.
You know, Augustine’s great philosophy which was basically a baby craves milk so there must
be milk. A fish wants water so where is the water? And a human being craves God, so where is
God? There has to be a God, a living God, bigger than the creation. Greater than the broad way.
Greater than our flesh and our own way. There has to be something more. And that’s why
Christ came to show us the way. And give us the secret place. Moses found it.
“He constructed an ark for the saving of his household.” I would say he would be like us, and he
would stand back from that big ark and say, how did this happen? And look at his gnarled hands and his team of people whoever they were that he subcontracted out to do this and that.
However the whole thing went down we don’t know. But he engineered it. God told him how
to do it. He could step back from that big ship, that ark, and say, how – thank you, God. Thank
you. How did this happen?
It’s kind of like us being in the ministry and standing back and saying, God, have you really
touched the hearts of people. Have you really changed – have you really saved them? Have you
really put your Spirit in them? Did you give them a desire? How did you do that, God? God
would say, I have done it. I built the ark, and I used you, Noah. I made the ministry, but I used
you people. I sent my son so this would not be in vain. There will be a narrow way and you will
actually love the narrow way. You look for it. Tell me again, Lord, what’s right and what’s wrong
from your mind. Tell me again and show me what it means and teach me and lead me in the
Okay. Last one. It’s this one. This is what Noah did. “He condemned the world.” What does it
mean? “Through which he condemned the world.” Do you know what it means? At the end of
the day, where’s the broad way people? Where’s the broad way? What do you got? You got
nothing. You got nothing. And then they look over here and they see the ark floating in the
water and they go, what do you got? Noah would say, I got God. And God did this. I believe God
and the way was narrow, but I found it and look at what happened. I’ve got God.
And we would say, I’ve got treasure in heaven. My life is not in vain. I got joy in my heart. I can
go to sleep at night with peace. We have sisters and brothers. We have a divine purpose. What
can we say? Noah is not boasting. He’s in tears. He’s in tears. Why me? Why me? How did this
happen? How did I get to be here? How did this happen? And the Lord will say because the
narrow way. You didn’t kick against it. You walked in it. You walked in the gate which was
narrow, and you found my love. You found my grace. You found my mind. You found my heart.
And I love the dear people that are in the broad way. I love every one of them. I love everyone.
I’m not willing.
I have no delight in the death of the wicked. I have no pleasure in their death. I
have no pleasure in anybody’s pain. I have no pleasure in any deception, any lie, any false
prophet, any false teacher, any, you know, – I’m not enjoying that. I’m not willing that any man
can perish. What can I do? I gave everything. I gave Christ. I gave my Son.
So, the last one in vs. 7. “He became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” The Lord
will point to that ark and say, Noah, you’re a righteous man. You’re an heir of the
righteousness. Noah, you’re my guy. You did it. You trusted me. You did it and reality is
speaking. So, in your heart and my heart when I’m drawn to the broad way, and our culture is
filled with this. They love the broad way. They think it’s the only reality, the broad way.
Whatever I want. I love it. Until they lie down in sorrow. They will look up one day.
They will sometimes in their trouble in life, they will wonder, is the world lying to me? Is there
another way? And we are here in the world to fulfill a purpose. We can be tempted to be proud
about it, but don’t be. Let’s not be proud about it. We could be tempted to say I told you so, or
to have a spirit like that. Let’s not be like that. Let’s be like Jesus who says with love and
humility how can I serve you? How can I help you? How can I speak to you to help you find
what you really are looking for. Okay. (Prayer).
Please enjoy these sermon notes from the messages preached at Greater Grace Church in Baltimore. These notes are provided to aid in your study and understanding of the Word. Note that these notes do not represent complete, word-for-word transcriptions. Also, they may contain omissions as well as some errors in spelling and structure, etc., as we attempt to provide them as soon as possible. Our hope is that these notes serve as a way to help you search and connect with messages on related subjects and passages. Thank you for your interest in the ministry of Greater Grace.