Sunday, February 20, 2022

The Hard Way OR The Easy Way?

By Brian Mitchell


    Life is full of choices to make and many of them are difficult. There are things that everyone must choose to do or not do (Joshua 24:15), places to go or not go (Genesis 13:8-12), people to acquaint yourself with (Romans 16:1-15) or avoid (Romans 16:17; 2 John 1:10-11). One of the most important choices a man must make is mentioned by our Lord in Mt.7:13-14. It is a choice which involves two gates, two roads and two destinations. It is a choice that involves taking the hard way or the easy way. Generally speaking, taking the easy way is not always a bad thing, but here we see that it is.

    Picture yourself at the intersection of two roads, one well-paved, easy to navigate, relatively straight with few hills to climb; and several lanes for smooth driving. The other, a two-lane road with potholes, no shoulders, and very hilly; so that your ability to see at a distance is limited. Which would you choose?  Most individuals are going to take the first road because it is just the easier of the two paths. Why would one willingly go down the second road with all of its difficulties and pitfalls?

    The same two choices are faced in the spiritual roadway of life. As human beings we generally seek after the path of least resistance. In the spiritual sense, it is easy to do the things of this world and go down that “easy road”. One will meet little or no resistance if he or she goes along with what everyone else is doing. The cruise control can be set, the seat leaned back, the air conditioner cranked up, with the stereo set on your favorite radio station. There is no such thing as “peer pressure” on this road, because whatever activities society dictates, the one who takes this road will likely engage in them as well (1 Corinthians 3:3-4).

    The other choice, however, is not as easy. It is the hard way!!! It is the “way of righteousness” and following the teaching of God’s word in all things (Proverbs 12:28; Psalm 1:1-2). It is thus “the road less traveled” because one must be willing to make self-sacrifices to travel it. For the most part, people do not wish to be different from the rest of the world. It’s a difficult thing to “go against the grain” and be one of those “peculiar” people who try to live a life pleasing to God (1 Peter 2:9). When one chooses to take the road less traveled, often times people of the world think them to be strange because of the stand it requires (1 Peter 4:4). 

    Unfortunately, these two roads do have crossovers. There is always tremendous pressure on those who take the difficult road to leave it and cross over to the easier way.  One can go from the easy road to the difficult road through obedience to God’s will (Matthew 7:21) and trying to live a life faithful to Him (Revelation 2:10). Most, however, do not cross over to this way and yet sadly many cross over from the difficult road to the easy way. Perhaps the road less traveled gets too difficult for them, or like Demas they “love this present world” (2 Timothy 4:10). 

    What we must do in the end is consider the end of the two roads. The less traveled road leads to the right destination – eternal life (Matthew 7:14), while the well-traveled road leads to a “dead end” – a destination of destruction (Matthew 7:13). Which road will you choose?
- Brian Mitchell serves as a minister with the Jackson Church of Christ in Jackson, MO. He may be contacted through the congregation's website at

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