“gate.” The Greek word translated “gate” is pulē, (#4439 πύλη; pronounced poo’-lay), and it means “gate,” and is used just as we use the English word “gate,” usually referring to entering a city, yard, courtyard, or some other type of wide area like a park. In contrast, the Greek word thura (#2374 θύρα) is “door,” and usually referred to the door of a more enclosed or defined area, such as a house or a room. Thus Jesus called himself the “door” of the sheepfold (see commentary on John 10:1, “door”). The fact that it is a gate that leads to death and a gate that leads to life helps make the point that those are wide areas and can accommodate many people. Every person who has ever lived will enter either the wide gate to their death or the narrow gate to everlasting life.
In this teaching, the “road” and the “gate” are the figure of speech hypocatastasis (see commentary on Revelation 20:2). They illustrate in a way that is easy to understand that not many people will make the effort to live the lifestyle that will result in everlasting life, while lots of people will live an undisciplined life which results in everlasting death.