Bible verses to build your life on
Jesus said: “… whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock…” ~ Matthew 7:24
John 10 ~ Part 2
(vs. 7 – 11)
7Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I AM the door of the sheep. 8All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9I AM the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. 11“I AM the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
A little background info… Sheep were an important part of the Jewish society because they were used for sacrifices – a temporary covering of sin and symbolic of the Lamb of God who came to “take away the sins of the world” (John 1:29). Lamb sacrifices were set up by God after Adam and Eve disobeyed God (Genesis 3:21 and 4:4) and had to be driven out of God’s presence and the beautiful Garden of Eden. And starting in Genesis 3:15, God promised a future covering for sin: the Messiah – and the Jews treasured this future promise of hope!
Notes: Words to note: “I AM the door.” – Interesting phrase that is referring to how sometimes the shepherd would sleep in the doorway, unless they had a door. So, when Jesus spoke symbolically of being the door to the sheep, He meant that literally! Anyone or anything, that would want to get to the sheep, had to go by the shepherd. How fitting this word picture is! Jesus is the Door to the Father: “6Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Also interesting is that Jesus is the only door – the only way to the Father is through Jesus and accepting His offer of salvation. ““36He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” (John 3:36) (Q: Why does His wrath abide on them? A: Because He is holy, we have broken His law, and they are rejecting the only offer that will save them and deliver them from God’s holy wrath.) And another verse about Jesus being the Door: “11And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12He who has the Son has [eternal] life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.” (1st John 5:11-13)
What most people don’t recognize is that Jesus’ offer has two parts as explained in Romans 10:9 ““9… if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Notice, we need to 1) understand that we have broken God’s Law and that the punishment for our sin is death: separation from God forever; 2) recognize that Jesus calls us to make Him our new Leader – i.e. we take ourselves off of the throne of our life and make Him our new Leader (with a sign hanging on the door – ‘Under New Management’ ~ J) – we need to be learning to love the things He loves, hate the things He hates (because sin destroys us), and love people the way He loves us; 3) accept that He paid the penalty on the cross - not for His sins, but for our sins – if we accept it…. (for more info on how to effectively share your faith, I highly encourage you to check out www.wayofthemaster.com and their resources!) The result will be that we accept Jesus as our Savior who died to pay our debt and our Master, whom we must learn to submit too. Here is one key passage that really ministers to me: “9Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him. 10For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. 11Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.” (2nd Corinthians 5:7-11– emphasis added ) We need to always remember, we aren’t saved by good works and doing what’s right, but good works and a desire to do what’s right will be the fruit of genuine repentance and submission to Jesus Christ. Lack of spiritual fruit should prompt us to: “5Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves…” (1st Corinthians 13:5)
Editor’s note: We are constantly taking in either Satan’s message or God’s Truth. We need to learn to discern the difference between them and “Abstain from every form of evil” (1st Timothy 4:3) and “9Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.” (Romans 12:9 - emphasis added)) Those are strong words of warning to us, because our hearts are so easily drawn to our selfish desires. Our culture would look very different if we put those into practice! And, aren’t we called to be separate - to look different from the world and not to blend in? Isn’t following Christ supposed to transform our lives? “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:1-2 – emphasis added) How do we renew our mind? By studying His transforming Living Word. I’m sure we all need to include more of His Word in our lives – I know I do!