“I Am the Good Shepherd”
Verse 1 – “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
This chapter continues with Jesus still talking to the scribes and Pharisees. Jesus describes them as thieves and robbers and not shepherds of the flock, who were not sent by God, nor did they come in the right door and took domination, which did not belong to them.
“But climbs up some other way,” hypocrisy and deceit, robs God of authority and power. The difference between a thief and a robber, with the Jews, the thief took away a man’s property privately in secret, and the robber did it openly, and didn’t care who saw.
Verse 2 – “But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. (authorized caregiver of the sheep)
Verse 3 – “To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
Verse 4 – “And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.
Who guards the door of your heart? Do you know the Shepherd’s voice? Do you follow Him? Do you allow the Shepherd to lead? Whose voice do you follow? These are all questions you should ask yourself. Too many say, “God told me…,” when it’s as plain as day that He did not speak. Anytime your actions contradict Scripture, you are not following the Shepherd’s voice.
Verse 5 – “Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.”
As Christians, sheep, we are to flee from strange doctrine and false religion that doesn’t agree with Scripture. There is one way to God, and that is through His Son, Jesus Christ – one door.
Verse 6 – Jesus used this illustration, but they did not understand the things which He spoke to them.
Verse 7 – Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep.
Jesus is the gate to God’s salvation. He offers forgiveness, grace, mercy, protection, and life everlasting. Some people resent that Jesus is the only way, but He is God’s Son, so why would we seek any other way to get to God?
Verse 8 – “All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them.
False prophets, all those Pharisees who robbed widows and plundered people, who were not sent by God, is the one’s He is taking about. But the sheep did not hear them – the elect of God. Those who do not and did not follow false prophets, false doctrines, worship idols, or turn towards every new religion that came their way.
Verse 9 – “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.
Through faith in Jesus Christ, is the only way through that door. “Finding pasture,” denotes assurance of God’s provisions.
Verse 10 – “The thief does not come except to steal, and kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
In contrast to the thief who is out to destroy life, Jesus gives life and gives it to the fullest. Life in Christ is lived on a higher plane because of His overflowing forgiveness, love and guidance through the Holy Spirit.
Verse 11 – “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
Verse 12 – “But he who is a hireling and not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.
Jesus is committed to His sheep. Those who only pretend, do it for the money or other reasons. When times get tough, they will simply quit and leave. True believers will know the difference between those who teach the true Gospel and those who only want the money and prestige.
Verse 13 – “The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about he sheep.
Verse 14 – “I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.
Verse 15 – “As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father, and lay down My life for the sheep.
Verse 16 – “And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.
These other sheep mentioned here are the Gentiles! Jews and Gentiles alike, will be united in one flock with one Shepherd. Jesus died for the whole world.
Verse 17 – “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again.
Verse 18 – “No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.
Jesus’ death and resurrection, were all part of God’s plan for salvation of the world. No one could kill Jesus until it was allowed by God.
Verse 19 – Therefore there was a division again among the Jews because of these sayings.
Verse 20 – And many of them said, “He has a demon and is mad. Why do you listen to Him?”
Verse 21 – Others said, “These are not the words of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”
The Fest of Dedication
Verse 22 – Now it was the Feast of Dedication in Jerusalem, and it was winter.
The Feast of Dedication, commemorated the cleaning of the temple under Juda Maccabeus in 165 B.C., after Antiochus Epiphanes had defiled the temple by sacrificing a pig on the altar. This was held on December 25th and is now called the Feast of Lights – Hanukkah.
Verse 23 – And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.
This was not the same porch built by Solomon, because that temple had been destroyed. However, because it had the same structure as the first one, it was called Solon’s Colonnade.
Verse 24 – Then the Jews surrounded Him and said to Him, “How long do You keep us in doubt? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.”
If these Jews had not understood that Jesus was the Messiah, then why were they trying to kill Him?
Verse 25 – Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me.
Verse 26 – “But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.
Verse 27 – “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.
Verse 28 – “And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.
Can you see why it’s so dangerous to build up a hardness of heart? No matter how much proof and evidence that Jesus is God, you still won’t believe. There is no going back after death.
Verse 29 – “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand.
Verse 30 – “I and My Father are one.”
This is the clearest statement of Jesus’ divinity He ever made. Jesus is plainly telling them He is God.
Verse 31 – Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him.
Verse 32 – Jesus answered them, “Many good works I have shown you from My Father. For which of those works do you stone Me?”
Verse 33 – The Jews answered Him, saying, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy, and because You, being a Man, make Yourself God.”
Verse 34 – Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, “You are gods” ‘? (Psalm 82:6)
Verse 35 – “If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and Scripture cannot be broken),
Verse 36 – “do you say of Him whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming’, because I said, ‘I am the son of God’?
Verse 37 – “If I do not the works of My Father, do not believe Me;
Verse 38 – “but if I do , though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him.”
Psalm 82:6 refers to where the Israelite rulers and judges are called “gods.” If God called the Israelite leaders gods because they were agents of God’s revelation and will, how then could it be blasphemy for Jesus to call Himself the Son of God?
Verse 39 – Therefore they sought again to seize Him, but He escaped out of their hand.
Verse 40 – And He went away again beyond the Jordan to the place where John was baptizing at first, and there He stayed.
Verse 41 – Then many came to Him and said, John performed no sign, but all the things that John spoke about this Man were true.”
Verse 42 – And many believed in Him there.
Even Jesus went away from those who refused to believe in Him. He went to those who would believe. Shouldn’t our time and witness be spent on those who are open to the Gospel, instead of so much time arguing with those who don’t believe. Let them be.