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Heaven’s Gate


There is a legend claiming that St. Peter is the gatekeeper of Heaven. This is an incident that was recorded in his journal:

There I was one day, standing just outside Heaven’s gate, greeting all those who were passing there. The line was long and the pilgrims were in best of spirits, chatting among themselves as they anticipated their entrance.

To each of the pilgrims I asked the question: “Why do you deserve to enter Heaven?” From each I would await a reply. Some would pause quite a moment before attempting to answer. Then I would lean close as though to be listening for a password.

Today seemed to be a particularly disappointing day for many a pilgrim. In all confidence, there were simply those who had no idea what Heaven is all about. Their answers ranged from braggart to irrelevant.

One gentleman whispered to me his name, to which he proudly attached many a title of distinction and chivalry: Admiral Reverend Mr Honorable Doctor Doctor Professor Ph.D. DD Esquire, and so on.

Another described his vast wealth that he frankly thought should impress me. I told him he didn’t have to impress me, but I will admit, I was impressed.

Another told how he had erected an edifice in my honor calling it: St. Peter’s Cathedral. I was flattered, but we first century believers didn’t spend much time in church buildings, considering what the religious leaders did to Jesus, Paul, Stephen and many others.

Then a gentleman came up to me with a look of helplessness on his face. I asked him: “Why do you deserve to enter Heaven?” He answered me quietly without hesitating: “I don’t.” Then he looked down and began to sob.

I thought by his sobbing that he must have misunderstood something. “Sir,” I said, “You’ve given me the right answer. What are you waiting for?”

“Jesus,” the gentleman replied. “I’m waiting for Jesus. He said he’d be at the gate.” “Sir,” I answered, “Jesus is the gate. Come right on in!” #

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