Let us look briefly at both readings.
The reading from Genesis, in making much of the wealth of Abraham, let’s us see that the Old Testament people regarded wealth as a sign of God’s favor. We see how that attitude persisted with the Apostles; for when Jesus said, “How difficult it is for the rich to enter the kingdom,” the Apostles asked, “Who then can be saved?” An outstanding thing about our present Holy Father is his love for the poor.
In telling us to “enter through the narrow gate” Jesus was telling us something about the walled towns in his time. Each of them had a main gate that was watched over by the elders of the town. If there were a disease or bandits abroad, the elders would close that gate, leaving even townsfolk outside.
However, each town also had a narrow gate, hidden by brambles, and watched over by a guard who would only open up to townsfolk who had made themselves welcome by always going around to enter there. We strive to enter by the narrow gate when we tend to our duties ahead of time, not waiting till the last minute.
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