1. Jesus declared that entry into the kingdom can never be automatic but is the result and the reward of a struggle. ‘Keep on striving to enter,’ he said. The word for striving is the word from which the English word agony is derived. The struggle to enter in must be so intense that it can be described as an agony of soul and spirit.
2. The Jews took it for granted that their salvation is assured just because they were born Jews. They always believed that Yahweh would never desert them in spite of their infidelity to the covenant. They did not learn the lesson from both their exiles (One by Assyrians 722 BC and one by Babylonians 587 BC).
3. We run a certain danger. It is easy to think that, once we have made a commitment of ourselves to Jesus Christ, we have reached the end of the road and can, as it were, sit back as if we had achieved our goal. There is no such finality in the Christian life. We must always be going forward or necessarily we go backwards.
4. The defence of these people was, ‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ There are those who think that just because they are members of a society based on Christian principles all is well. They might be enjoying the fruits won by their hardworking predecessors. What have we done to preserve and develop it? We cannot live on borrowed goodness.
5. There will be surprises in the kingdom of God. Those who are very prominent in this world may have to be very humble in the next; those whom no one notices here may have real significance in the world to come. The standards of heaven are not the standards of earth.
Taking things for granted is one of the evils of today. We take for granted several things like the natural resources, mother’s love, school education etc. Slowly we are becoming people with no gratitude. God has given us several gifts which we do not deserve yet we fail to acknowledge the greatness of God. Let us learn to be grateful to God and to our neighbours in acknowledging every little thing we receive. This will naturally help us to pass through the narrow gate and reach Jesus.
William Barclay the New Daily Study Bible