SCRIPTURE COMMENTARY #194
"Enter ye in at the narrow gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way that leadeth to destruction, and many there are who go in thereat. How narrow is the gate, and strait is the way that leadeth to life: and few there are that find it!"
THE ROAD TO HEAVEN AND THE ROAD TO HELL: The narrow, up-hill road, entrance to which is gained through a strait gate, signifies walking in the way of God's commandments, which restrain our desires and passions, but which must be obeyed unless we would stray from the road to heaven. It costs much effort, watchfulness and self-denial to observe the commandments and not to stumble in the narrow way, or, if we stray from the road, to return to it by true penance! For this reason our Lord says in another passage: "The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force!" On the other hand, the road which leads down-hill to perdition is broad and easy, for unbridled willfulness and license reign there, each one going whithersoever his lusts and desires carry him. Very many--the luxurious and the thoughtless--travel on that road to hell, but very few pass through the narrow gate of penance and travel on the road of self-denial to heaven. What a terrible truth this is!
[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.] (1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)