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. 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. John 10:7 - 11 (ESV)
Jesus informs the listeners that He is not the shepherd, at least in this instance, but He does
later refer to Himself as the good shepherd in verse 11. He is the door. Jesus affirms in verses
7 and 9 that He is the access to the fold. Nobody can have access to the fold without first
entering through the gate or the door. There are no other ways. Jesus is affirming the narrowness
of becoming a member of the fold. There is only one way to enter this fold and it is
Jesus says, “I am the door…” Theologian D.A. Carson writes, “Here the idea is not that Jesus
the shepherd draws out his own flock from a rather mixed fold, but that Jesus the gate is the
sole means by which the sheep may enter the safety of the fold or the luxurious forage of the
pasture… this is a proverbial way of insisting that there is only one means of receiving eternal
life – Jesus alone.” Anyone trying to enter the fold through any other means than through the
door (Jesus) will be cast out. Entrance through the door is synonymous to saving faith in Jesus
Christ. He is establishing the “ground rules”, if you will, to eternal life. For one to enter the
fold or becoming a believer one must first be called by the shepherd and then willingly submit
and commit to the shepherd, who is Jesus.
The thieves, or in this case the religious leaders have only come to destroy by manipulation,
power and control, but Jesus came to give life and to give it in abundance. Jesus didn’t just
give us enough life, so we can get through and when we die we get the goods. No, Jesus came
to give life TODAY and give it in abundance. We should live our lives today seizing the
opportunity to fully live for his glory and with joy! I personally know Christians who are just
living out their lives and waiting until they die; they only long for heaven so they can leave this
rotten world and truth be told most of them are miserable. We should all long for heaven, but
we should also live for Jesus today, tomorrow and in the years to come. Jesus hasn’t just given
us enough to just get through this life, He has given us an abundance and we should take every
opportunity to live for his glory.
Jeff has been in ministry for well over two decades. He currently serves as Campus Pastor at West Bradenton Baptist Southside Campus in Bradenton, Florida.
Jeff Has authored an Advent Devotional (The Advent of Jesus) and a devotional on the book of James (James: Where Faith and Life Meet). Both are available on Amazon.
He is married to Carrie and they have four children, Micaiah, Gabe, Simon, and Berea.
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