Tag Archives: Sheep

John 10:25-30 – so many eternal truths in one short passage

I’ve been focusing on this passage a lot as I added it to my Bible Memory list.  It has one fascinating and important truth after another.  The context is the “Good Shepherd” narrative where Jesus is speaking to the Pharisees.  He was asked if He was really the Christ, but they didn’t want the answer.

John 10:25–30 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.”

It is crucial to note that these people have seen Jesus face-to-face many times and even seen his miracles firsthand, yet they still don’t believe.

John 10:25 I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, but you do not believe . . .

Keep that in mind when skeptics say they’d believe if only they got a sign from God.  The Bible says they have already been given plenty of signs to know about God:

Romans 1:18–20 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

And Jesus warned against asking for signs:

Matthew 16:4 An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” So he left them and departed.

And just ask atheists if they’d worship God even if they were provided evidence that met their standards.  Many will admit that they still wouldn’t follow him.

Why didn’t the listeners believe even when they talked to the incarnate Christ in person and saw his miracles?  Because they weren’t his.  The Father hadn’t given them to Jesus.  And as Stan noted in the comments section, they believed because they were his sheep.  They didn’t believe and then become his sheep.

but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep . . . My Father, who has given them to me . . .

How are his sheep identified?  They believe Jesus, they follow Jesus and they persevere over time.

but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

So when “Christian” Leftists and other false teachers deny the Bible – which Jesus affirmed (the Old Testament) and authorized (the New Testament), then you can know they are wolves.  They don’t believe Jesus.   They don’t follow him, they follow the world.

One of the hidden blessings of the LGBTQX movement is that it makes a clear distinction between sheep and goats.  No one will have an excuse as to why they followed a false teacher.

This is an important truth for evangelism.  We should scatter the seed of the Gospel broadly and not try to guess who is and isn’t in Jesus’ flock.  We’ve all seen people who seemed highly unlikely to believe (I witness that monthly doing prison ministry) as well as those who you’d think would believe but don’t.  It glorifies God to proclaim the truth about Jesus regardless of whether people accept him.  But if people are hostile to the Gospel, then they either aren’t his sheep or it isn’t their time to believe.

And note the double assurance of perseverance: No one will snatch you out of Jesus’ hand or the Father’s hand.  You didn’t save yourself, you won’t un-save yourself, and no one else will un-save you.  That isn’t to say that you should never test yourself, just that if you have repented, believed and trust his Word then your default setting should be set on assurance.

2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!

If you work really hard you can ignore the concept of predestination and salvation by grace and not works in this and other passages :-).  There is no hint that Jesus thinks that if He just badgers them some more that they will become his sheep.  Also this:

My Father, who has given them to me . . .

And note Jesus’ divinity here.  His hand = the Father’s hands. And this:

I and the Father are one.

The whole passage is so clear about sheep, goats, evidence, evangelism, predestination, perseverance of the saints and salvation by grace.  It is no accident that the “Christian” Left works overtime to dismiss the authority of the Gospel of John (and more).  Every time they do so they prove Jesus’ points.

Meditate on this passage today and enjoy the beautiful truths!

Sheep, wolves and sheepdogs

I updated this in light of the current gun debate and added some thoughts on the spiritual parallels.

A now-defunct blog made some important distinctions between three types of people:

  • Sheep, the “kind, decent people who are not capable of hurting each other, except by accident or under extreme provocation. They are sheep. I mean nothing negative by calling them sheep.”
  • Wolves, who “feed on the sheep without mercy.  Do you believe there are wolves out there who will feed on the flock without mercy? You better believe it. There are evil men in this world and they are capable of evil deeds. The moment you forget that or pretend it is not so, you become a sheep. There is no safety in denial.”
  • Sheepdogs, who “live to protect the flock and confront the wolf.”

“If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen, a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath, a wolf.

But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? What do you have then? A sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.”

I’m against war and violence in general, but there are times when it is required.  I find pure pacifism to be unrealistic and actually unloving in many cases.  Note that when I say pacifist I am using the Dictionary.com definition of “a person who is opposed to war or to violence of any kind” (emphasis added)

In this metaphor, there is nothing wrong with being sheep.  What is wrong is the naive assumption that we will ever be able to live without sheepdogs.  One thing that bothers me about some pacifists is not only their lack of gratitude but their contempt for those who protect them.

A thought from George Orwell:

We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence upon those who would do us harm.

There is a spiritual parallel as well.  Consider all the wolves in sheep’s clothing who eternally danger people with their lies about God.  Not everyone is equipped to battle those wolves, but some of us have worked hard to know how to refute their lies.  We don’t expect everyone to do what we do, but we do appreciate it when people don’t blame us for being “divisive” or some such thing.  We tend to be intrinsically motivated, though I will say that I get the nicest notes from time to time from people who agree completely with the views here but are too afraid to say so publicly.  I’m fine with that.  It is nice to know that they pray and are supportive.

Sheep, wolves and sheepdogs

I am updating this in light of the current gun debate and added some thoughts on the spiritual parallels.

A now-defunct blog made some important distinctions between three types of people:

  • Sheep, the “kind, decent people who are not capable of hurting each other, except by accident or under extreme provocation. They are sheep. I mean nothing negative by calling them sheep.”
  • Wolves, who “feed on the sheep without mercy.  Do you believe there are wolves out there who will feed on the flock without mercy? You better believe it. There are evil men in this world and they are capable of evil deeds. The moment you forget that or pretend it is not so, you become a sheep. There is no safety in denial.”
  • Sheepdogs, who “live to protect the flock and confront the wolf.”

“If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen, a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath, a wolf.

But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? What do you have then? A sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.”

I’m against war and violence in general, but there are times when it is required.  I find pure pacifism to be unrealistic and actually unloving in many cases.  Note that when I say pacifist I am using the Dictionary.com definition of “a person who is opposed to war or to violence of any kind” (emphasis added)

In this metaphor, there is nothing wrong with being sheep.  What is wrong is the naive assumption that we will ever be able to live without sheepdogs.  One thing that bothers me about some pacifists is not only their lack of gratitude but their contempt for those who protect them.

A closing thought from George Orwell:

We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence upon those who would do us harm.

There is a spiritual parallel as well.  Consider all the wolves in sheep’s clothing who eternally danger people with their lies about God.