Several years ago we relocated to a new home, and unlike our old place, it has a simple and locally-fenced verandah, with a small gate attached. You cannot just walk in and open the door. My son was outside playing, and he saw a stranger standing with his neck over the bamboo fence, asking if there was anyone inside. My son ran without attending to him, came inside, and told us a stranger is “hanging on the fence!” I realized it was because he did not go through the main gate, and so he was a threat to our son. He was not given a normal welcome like it would be with one who came to the main gate and asked for entry.
- Prepare your heart and mind as you read today’s passage. Ask God to give you understanding of his Word.
READ THE WORD: JOHN 10:1-10 (ESV)
10:1 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. 2 But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. 5 A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” 6 This figure of speech Jesus used with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.
7 So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them.9 I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”
English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- In verse 7, what did Jesus say he is?
- How did Jesus define one who enters into a sheepfold “by another way” (vs. 1)?
- What will happen to one who enters by the door, according to verse 9?
- Why would the sheep flee the stranger (vss. 1-6)?
- What are the differences between the thief and Jesus in terms of the giving or taking of life (vs. 10)?
RESPOND TO GOD
In this passage, Jesus shows us who he is in relation to being our great caretaker and our master. He is a shepherd, and “the door.” This means he is sovereign in our lives, but also that he is the life himself. All characters that would deny his Lordship only rob us of our future life. He confirms to us that he alone is able to bring healing and wholeness to humankind, once we accept and go through him, and that anything outside him is destruction.
- Think of areas where you are not trusting in Jesus as the door and ask God to help you refocus.
- If you have been robbed of anything in life simply because of not listening to the shepherd, today is your day to ask for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and to allow Jesus to attend to you.