In these verses, the strait gate is not defined. But Nephi clearly defines it in 2 Nephi 31:17-18, “For the gate by which ye should enter is repentance and baptism by water; and then cometh a remission of your sins by fire and by the Holy Ghost. And then are ye in this strait and narrow path which leads to eternal life;”
Two chapters later, Nephi ends his record with these final remarks: “I also have charity for the Gentiles. But behold, for none of these can I hope except they shall be reconciled unto Christ, and enter into the narrow gate, and walk in the strait path which leads to life, and continue in the path until the end of the day of probation.”
The strait gate that Christ speaks of is then this two-part package:
- Reconciliation to God (Repentance)
- Entrance into the path of covenants (Starts with baptism, church membership)
The Broad Way to Destruction
A similar verse in Doctrine and Covenants equates destruction with “the deaths”, and also adds: “because they receive me not, neither do they abide in my law.” This much wider gate stands in strange contrast to the strait gate.
The Way Which Leadeth unto Life
Life, eternal life, the life that God has, a life shared with God in His order of existence.
The gate and the way are in Christ, and elsewhere Christ even says that He is “the way, the truth, and the life.”
I am trying to reconcile this with the patterns of nature that I find all around me here where I live, because I see great evidence of a kind and generous Creator’s hand. I am trying to understand how to replicate that life in what I see in the world around me.