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John 10:7-10 - The Shepherds Provision

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Introduction

A.       The Jesus Movement: In the Jesus Movement of the 1960s and ‘70s, the “One Way” sign—the index finger held high—became of popular icon.  “One Way” bumper stickers and lapel pins were everywhere, and the “One Way” slogan was a very catching phrase.  One - way seemed and unshakable belief, that is no longer the case. 

B.       The Evangelical Movement Of Today Is No Longer Unified On This Issue.  Some who call themselves evangelicals are openly insisting that faith alone in Jesus is not the only way to heaven.  They are now convinced that people of all faiths will be in heaven.  Why? 

1.      Because church leaders of today have compromised and watered down the Gospel of Jesus Christ in a desperate quest to be relevant with the modern world.    

2.      The relevance of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is that Christ alone has atoned for sin and therefore Christ alone can provide reconciliation with God for those who believe only in Him!

3.      The early church preached Christ crucified, knowing that the message was a stumbling block to the religious Jews and foolishness to the philosophical Greeks: "For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness" (1 Corinthians 1:22-23, NKJV)

C.       We Need To Remember How Sinners Are Won To Christ.  Sinners are not won by, clever messages from the pulpit, persuasion, being pressured in, sinners are won by the Gospel of Jesus Christ (Romans 1:16)! 

1.      The narrowness of the Gospel is what sets Christianity apart from all other world views (Matthew 7:14).  The truth of the Gospel is in clear contrast to all the wisdom of the world

Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God (1 Corinthians 3:18-19, NKJV)

2.      Jesus did not teach the Disciples to win the worlds favor by reinventing the gospel to suit worldly preferences.  Jesus warned that a quest for the worlds approval or praise is a characteristic of false prophets:

Woe to you when all men speak well of you, For so did their fathers to the false prophets." (Luke 6:26, NKJV)

"Adulterers and adulteresses!  Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God?  Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God" (James 4:4)

3.      The only times the church has made any significant impact on the world are when the people of God have stood firm, refused to compromise, and boldly proclaimed the truth despite the world’s hostility.  Remember Daniel and his three friends?   

A.     The Door of the Sheep: The Only Way to God, 10:7-10

1.       Jesus Is The Only Door Of The Sheep (v.7-8)

a)        I am the door of the sheep (v.7)

1)        Our Access To God.

(a)      Is Of God: Blessed is the man You choose, And cause to approach You, That he may dwell in Your courts. We shall be satisfied with the goodness of Your house, Of Your holy temple." (Psalm 65:4, NKJV)

(b)      Is By Christ: (John 10:7,9; 14:6; Acts.4:12; 1Tim.2:5; Heb 7:25; 10:19; 1 Pet 3:18; 1Jn.5:11-12).

(c)      Is By The Holy Spirit (Eph 2:18).

(d)      Obtained Through Faith (Acts 14:27; Rom 5:1-2; Eph 3:12; Heb 11:6.

(e)      Follows Upon Reconciliation To God (Col 1:21,22).

b)        All who ever came before me are thieves and robbers (v.8)

1)        All Others Are Thieves And Robbers (v.8a)

(a)      Jesus Was Referring Primarily To The Religious Leaders Of That Day (John 10:8)They were the ones who were trying to steal the people by means of intimidation (9:22). 

(b)      They Were Not True Shepherds Nor Have The Approval Of God On Their Ministry. They did not love the sheep, but instead exploited them and abused them. The beggar was a good example of what the “thieves and robbers” could do.

(c)      They Were Only Interested In Providing For Themselves And Protecting Themselves.

1.         The Pharisees were lovers of money (Luke 16:14) and even took advantage of the poor widows (Mark 12:40).

2.         They turned God’s temple into a den of thieves (Matt. 21:13), and they plotted to kill Jesus so that Rome would not take away their privileges (John 11:49–53).

Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of My pasture!” says the Lord. Therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel against the shepherds who feed My people: “You have scattered My flock, driven them away, and not attended to them. Behold, I will attend to you for the evil of your doings,” says the Lord." (Jeremiah 23:1-2, NKJV)

Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God to the shepherds: “Woe to the shepherds of Israel who feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks?" (Ezekiel 34:2, NKJV)

2)        Proof: The Sheep Did Not Hear Them (v.8b)

(a)      Sheep Have No Sense Of Direction.  If you turn a sheep loose in the front yard of your house, unlike your dog, he will not come back, you will never see him again. 

(b)      Sheep Have Good Ears.  They know and respond to the Shepherds voice.  Being under the care of our Good Shepherd, God has given us new set of sheep ears, because we do not know how to guide ourselves through life.   

2.       Jesus Is The Only Door That Leads To Salvation (v.9)

a)        I am the door.  If anyone enters by Me he will be saved (v.9).

1)        Intolerance As A Virtue Today.  

(a)      Today, Tolerance Says That All Religious Roads End Up At The Same Place.  

1.         Buddhism, Islam, Native American Spirituality, African Traditional Religions, Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witness; all of these are spiritual journeys that sincere seekers may travel to find God.

2.         To think that one religion is superior to others is being intolerant. And to even suggest that one religion is true and others are false is narrow-minded racist that has no place in our postmodern ethic.

3.         Yet that is precisely what is going on here.  Jesus is not just a new way or a better way to God. He is the gate, the only way to God (John 14:6).

2)        Either One Or The Other (Matthew 7:13-14).

(a)      Every Person Enters One Gate Or The Other.  Enter is in the aorist imperative tense, and therefore demands a definite and specific action.

(b)      Don’t Admire The Gate But To Enter It.  Example of Disneyland Entrance.  

1.         Many people admire the Sermon on the Mount but never follow those principles.  

2.         Many people respect and praise Jesus Christ but never receive Him as Lord and Savior.

3)        He Will Be Saved.  This word “saved,” means, “delivered safe and sound.” It was used to say that a person had recovered from severe illness, come through a bad storm, survived a war, or was find not guilty in court.

(a)      The Word Salvation Is Used In Scripture 3 Different Ways:

1.         The once-for-all experience of salvation (Luke 7:50 cf. Eph.2:8; 1Thess.1:10; 2Tim1:9).

Saved from the condemnation of sin, death, & hell.

2.         The continuous experience of salvation (1Cor.1:18).

Being saved from the dominion of sin and is being sanctified (Heb.7:25)

3.         The redemptive experience in the future (Rom.13:11)

Will be saved from the very presence of sin in heaven forever (Rom.5:9-10)

(b)      We Are No Longer Perishing (2Corinthians 4:3-4)—“Perishing” means “to be lost, to be in the process of being destroyed or ruined, corrupted and put to death.”  Men are on the road to being lost.

 

b)        Will go in and out and find pasture (v.9)

1)        “In and out”: Security (v.9a)

(a)      He Is The Only Door That Allows The Sheep To Go In And Out. This was a common Jewish phrase. If a man could “go in and out” without difficulty or danger, it meant he was safe and secure. Jesus brings to the believer safety and security, peace and tranquillity.

Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;" (Philippians 1:6, NKJV)

Who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time." (1 Peter 1:5, NKJV)

He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters." (Psalm 23:2, NKJV)

2)        “Pasture”: Provision (v.9b)

(a)      His Pasture alone satisfies the soul

For He satisfies the longing soul, And fills the hungry soul with goodness." (Psalm 107:9, NKJV)

The Lord will guide you continually, And satisfy your soul in drought, And strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail." (Isaiah 58:11, NKJV)

3.       Jesus Is The Only Door That Leads To Abundant Life (v.10)

a)        The thief comes to steal and to kill and to destroy (v.10)

1)        All Others Come To Take And To Steal (v.10a)

(a)      Judas was a thief (John 12:1-6)

(b)      Ezekiel prophecies against the shepherds (Ezek.34:2-4)

(c)      The Pharisees (Matt.23:14-15)

b)        I have come that they may have life… abundant life (v.10)

1)        Jesus Comes To Give Life (v.10b)

(a)      Disneyland Entrance

1.         Abundance of grace (1:16; Romans 5:17,20; Eph.1:7-8)

2.         Of joy (2Cor.8:2)

3.         Of peace (Jer.33:6)

(b)      When you go through “the Door,” you receive life and you are saved. As you go “in and out,” you enjoy abundant life in the rich pastures of the Lord. His sheep enjoy fullness and freedom. Jesus not only gave His life for us, but He gives His life to us right now!

1.         They preach that if you come to Jesus, you will have abundant life.

2.         What happens when persecution arises?  They split.

3.         John 10:10 is a result of the gospel but v.11 is the gospel.  That is the basis for coming to Jesus.  Not what He will do for you but what He has done for you! 

4.       One Day The Door Will Be Shut (v.10)

a)        Matt.25:10; Luke 13:25; Rev.3:7), Christs Return (Matt.24:33; Luke 17:20-36); Ark, one day it will be shut (Gen.7:16)

Symbolically, doors were places where sin lay in wait (Gen. 4:7), the apertures through which speech made its exit (Ps. 141:3), the model of sluggish action (Prov. 26:14), an access route for hope (Hos. 2:15), the narrow passage to eternal life (Luke 13:24), the right access to the human community of the church (John 10:1), the access route of faith among the Gentiles (Acts 14:27), opportunity to proclaim the gospel (2 Cor. 2:12), and the route of access to one’s life (Rev. 3:8, 12), a door of faith (Acts 14:27); a closed door (Matt.25:10; Luke 13:25; Rev.3:7), Christs Return (Matt.24:33; Luke 17:20-36); Ark, one day it will be shut (Gen.7:16)

Jesus Christ is not looking for people who want to add Him to their sin as insurance against hell. He is not looking for people who want to apply His high moral principles to their unregenerate lives. He is not looking for those who want only to be outwardly reformed by having their old nature improved.

Jesus Christ calls to Himself those who are willing to be inwardly transformed by Him, who desire an entirely new nature that is created in His own holy likeness. He calls to Himself those who are willing to exchange their sinfulness for His holiness. He calls to Himself those who are willing to die with Him in order to be raised with Him, who are willing to relinquish slavery to their sin for slavery to His righteousness. And when men come to Him on His terms, He changes their destiny from eternal death to eternal life.

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