The Life of Sheep (John 10)
The Life of the Sheep
10:22 At that time the Feast of Dedication took place at Jerusalem. It was winter, 23 and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the colonnade of Solomon. 24 So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, "How long will you keep
us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly." 25 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, 26 but you do not believe because you are not part of my flock. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29My 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. 30 I and the Father are one."
Unbelief questions the truth of Christ. Unbelief is never satisfied with what has been revealed. The Jews surround Christ seeking a
clear answer as to his identity. Unbelief always seeks more answers, because it is never satisfied with the truth. Christ had already given
his answer regarding his identity. The works of Christ speak to his identity, and his greatest work is yet to be accomplished. On this side
of the Resurrection, how much more true are Christ’s words “the works I do bear witness to me.”? Yet in our unbelief we often still
ask more of Christ, whether through the “objective” false standards of atheists, or the subjective false standards imposed by many
We must follow Christ, the Good Shepherd. This is one of the great truths found throughout the Gospel of John. The fourth of
seven “I am” statements of John occur earlier in John 10:11 and 14. “I am the good shepherd.” This is in contrast with the evil shepherds
in John 9, who condemned the man whom Christ has healed. Christ is the good shepherd who compels us, his sheep to follow him. He
calls us to be part of the flock, and gives us eternal life. We are to take comfort in their shepherd. “Remember it is sinful to doubt His
Word, wherein he has promised that thou shalt never perish.” - Spurgeon.
We worship Christ as God. “I and the Father are one.” This profound statement of deity, and equality with the Father is what
causes the Jews to attempt to stone him. The Jew’s see this as uttermost blasphemy. But to those of Christ’s sheep this is a glorious
truth. Christ demands that we not only follow him as our Shepherd but that we worship him as our God. Christ is not only our Shepherd
but the Lamb in Revelation 7. “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb...honor and power and might be
to our God Forever and ever! Amen.”
Jared McNabb (M.Div. Westminster Theological Seminary) is the pastor of St. Paul's Independent Church (Millers, MD). He is a graduate of Lancaster Bible College, and has served as a Pastoral Intern at All Saints Church in Lancaster PA.