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Thread: striving to enter narrow door...

  1. #16
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    Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    Thank you for the helpful replies and us sharing our struggles and that helps. I prayed to God that I repent of my sins including smoking and drinking alcohol. Please pray for me for where I am weak He is strong.

    Romans 4:5- He who worketh not but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

  2. #17
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    Cool Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    Thank you for the helpful replies and us sharing our struggles and that helps. I prayed to God that I repent of my sins including smoking and drinking alcohol. Please pray for me for where I am weak He is strong.

    Romans 4:5- He who worketh not but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
    So Mr. King, you say you have ocd and then you wonder why you obsess about your salvation. God tells us the fear comes in the form of a spirit. That spirit was not sent from God, so guess where that spirit of fear comes from. The enemy.

    2 Tim. 1:7 "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."

    If God didn't give you that spirit, refuse it. You don't have to accept it.

    James 4:7 "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
    John 15:17 "These things I command you, that ye love one another."

  3. #18
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    Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    Thank you for the helpful replies and us sharing our struggles and that helps. I prayed to God that I repent of my sins including smoking and drinking alcohol. Please pray for me for where I am weak He is strong.

    Romans 4:5- He who worketh not but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
    Mr King

    I probably was at the same point you are in your struggle.
    On Christmas day I stopped smoking and drinking and kept it up for Severn months and do you know what happened to me?
    NOTHING!
    It was not the drinking and smoking it was sin, my mind would not stop from thinking about it, this is what needs to be removed.
    You do this by stopping those thoughts, every time they come in you have to say stop and pray to God to help you stop them.
    Eventually over time your mind will improve, and it will take time it's not an instant fix.
    Remember how long you have been in sin it could take that long to get out of it.
    But I tell you the journey is a good journey you come to understand human nature and why the world is the way it is now.
    Just because you don't understand your mind and your thoughts now keep asking God for forgiveness and strive to do his will and your rewards will be perfect and you will see the punishment did fit the crime.
    God is a just God and does not punish us if we obey him.
    Be glad he has given you the opportunity to hear him call you to repentance.

  4. #19

    Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    Luke 13:24- “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.

    John 10:1- "Most certainly, I tell you, one who doesn't enter by the door into the sheep fold, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber."
    Who/what is the "narrow gate"? Your obedience or Christ?

    I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. John 10:9

    You have taken your eyes off of Jesus and are looking at your own performance. You must strive to put your faith back into Jesus and not your own performance. You are no longer fully trusting in Christ. You know what I am saying? You are now trusting in works.

    O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? Gal 3:1-3


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    These two verses scares me and gets me doubting about my salvation. I'm still struggling with addiction of smoking and fear that even though I believe in Jesus Christ who is my Lord and Savior but haven't quit smoking and fear that I have not entered the narrow door.
    You have entered the narrow gate when you place 100% of your faith in Christ. But if you are not relying on Christ's atonement for you and instead are relying on your own performance then you should not have feelings of assurance. (Not saying your salvation is lost. But you are now trusting in your performance. Which should NOT give you a sense of assurance. See the difference!?)

    Were you smoking and drinking when Christ saved you initially? (Re-read Gal 3:1-3)


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    The word strive is make every effort, struggle, or fight vigorously and agonize which is to suffer too. Striving is to writhe with agony; to suffer violent anguish. To suffer agony, to subject to extreme pain. So all this is striving to enter the narrow door.


    Exactly. Strive to enter the narrow gate... which is Christ...not sobriety and smoking cessation. The struggle is to accept this rather than Man's ingrained almost irresistible desire to handle the matter for himself.

    And, oh yeah, its a struggle, a vigorous fight and most definitely agony. Man's spirit of self-determination is an enemy of faith in Another who not only will, but has, done it for you.

    And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. Luke 18:13-14

    It can be pride. But you sound much more like me. Perhaps a little fear that this is all just a little too good to be true? Its the Good News. The Gospel. Yes, the struggle is to believe, not perform. To trust. Because you see even if it is not pride then fear is lack of faith. And salvation comes by grace through faith.

    For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Eph 8:2

    You may be thinking... "I've heard or read all these scriptures before." Well, me too. But it took me a very very long time to really meditate on them and see how they needed to be applied to me. Personally. Jesus died for you. Jesus is the narrow gate. Have you enter through Him? Did you stop?


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    I've suffered a severe mental illness that I battled for over a decade and believe all that was done to bring me to Christ(long story). But I fear of failing to strive enough to enter the narrow door and Jesus is the narrow door. How do I know if I already entered the narrow door and not climb up some other way like a thief and a robber? I know that Jesus is the only way to the Father and heaven for He is the way, the truth, and the life, no one can come to the Father except through Jesus Christ. But I'm such a wretched sinner, I still sin and still selfish and fear that I have not nor do not repent wholeheartedly from ALL sins for my flesh and selfishness and sins in me doesn't want to repent and at the same time I want to repent and feel afraid and doubting and fearful not knowing if I'm saved or not. If I don't quit smoking or put to death the sinful desires of the flesh I fear I may go to hell. God help me....
    Here I see you actually understand this in principle. Penicillin cures an infection. (Not a medical debate, okay?) But not if you do not apply/take it. Have you taken it? Maybe you need another dose? Take the same medicine (Jesus) to cure the same problem (sin) that you took the first time. Nothing has changed except your expectations. Jesus was good enough to save you and He is good enough to keep you saved. But you have to trust Him and not your own performance.

    Everything you say, I have said to myself many times. Keep saying it. Say it until you again truly believe it.

    You say you are trusting Christ, but are you? Or have you started trusting in your own works. Therefore not trusting in Christ 100%. THIS is THE struggle. This is the striving. You are striving, but for the wrong thing.

    See, here is the problem. If you quit smoking and drinking while thinking this way, you would be trusting in your works or accomplishments. You may think that this confirms you are saved. But what happens when you lose your temper or take another drink or smoke. Are you unsaved then? Its not your faith that is most important, but the OBJECT of your faith. Right now it is your performance. Trust Christ and He will never fail you, but the flesh, oh count on it, it WILL fail you at some point. Likely sooner rather than later.

    The distinction between the two is subtle, but oh so significant.

    "But I'm such a wretched sinner" Is there any other kind??

    "I still sin and still selfish and fear that I have " You have?? You fear because deep down inside you know that you cannot save yourself. You're not truly fully trusting Christ when you are thinking this way. The fear you experience is the fear of punishment. And those that fail to enter through the narrow gate (Christ) but climbs up some other way (works, performance) the same is a thief and a robber. A thief stealing what? God's rightful glory. God saves. When you are not trusting in Christ, who is reliable, then why should you have a sense or feelings of assurance? You are trusting in something that you know is unreliable. Your flesh.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr King View Post
    It's HARD to put to death the sinful desires of the flesh, to deny self and take up your cross daily and follow Jesus for this is a lifelong commitment. So I don't feel secured in Jesus or saved nor have rest in Him. I'm scared. I have a thought like what if I repented number 1 through 9 but failed to repent on number 10 therefore condemned...

    I have OCD, just in case you want to know but that doesn't matter for I am not going to blame ocd but myself.
    Some would say its impossible. Especially in your own strength. Which is depending on you becoming righteous enough. Or remembering number 10.

    One of the worst sinful desires of the flesh is the desire to be responsible for or contribute to our own salvation. To be self-sufficient. When you struggle in your own strength to quit smoking or drinking, do you want to drink and smoke even more? I know that I did. All that stress, would only drive me toward drinking (or whatever) and smoking. Its not working. Make another plan. Try something else.

    Set yourself free of self righteousness. Note I am not saying you are arrogant. But by the very definition of trying to be (or evaluate) righteousness in self, is self righteousness. The struggle is to let go and let God. Let God be responsible for your salvation. Just like you did before.

    Its good that you are not blaming this on your OCD. Its also good that you are not blaming this on God, your family or friends, your circumstances, etc. The problem is your thinking. Not your smoking and drinking. I trust you are following this and not thinking I am blaming or attacking you. I am attacking your (innocent) misguided application of faith. Faith in God, not us. THAT is what makes the gate so 'narrow'. I tell you, many will seek to enter it and will not be able.

    You may actually not have repented enough? Which is NOT feeling sorry enough for your failures and sin. Its not trying harder in your own strength. "Repent" means to change your mind. Change your mind about letting God do this instead of you trying to do it.

    I know that this may be annoying that I keep saying the same thing over and over. Even if in a slightly different way. Contemplate it or meditate on it until you truly get it. That will be your game changer. Once you trust Christ fully for your salvation (again), I bet trusting Him for your deliverance from smoking and drinking will be much easier.

    If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. John 8:36

    No striving. You are trusting your success in quitting smoking and drinking. Then you are (unwittingly) trusting that to prove (even if only to yourself) the validity of your salvation. You're trying to go around the Gate. Do you see? And thus rob God of His glory and honor and praise for doing it for you.

    Admit to God that you cannot overcome this in your flesh. He already knows. Tell Him that you trust Him to do the heavy work of salvation and even that you need His help to overcome these habits and addictions. Remember the guy beating his chest? We're helpless and wretched and powerless to save ourselves and, in many cases, overcome the Flesh. Only God can do either.

  5. #20

    Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    I have OCD too, specifically Scrupulosity. It's a horrible battle every day and it makes me doubt my salvation too. It brought me back to Jesus too, in a way because I was backsliding. However, Jesus does assure us that if we believe in Him and OBEY his commandments, we are saved. I struggle with distinguishing the difference between grace versus works too, but I think the act of us obeying is a manifestation of our faith in the Lord. Although smoking is a sin, I believe God and the Holy Spirit will help you overcome it sooner or later. Will be praying for you brother !

  6. #21

    Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    Hi Mr King, I'm glad to hear you say you're praying about it. I can't tell you how much prayer has helped me. Remember Luke 11: 9-13. Keep praying and don't give up and I guarantee you won't be disappointed.

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    182

    Re: striving to enter narrow door...

    Thank you so much everyone for your help and to correct my bad faulty theology on God in Christ Jesus! I really appreciate it very much! God bless you all in Christ and may you be blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places too!

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