“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. 2 But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. 5 Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” 6 Jesus used this illustration, but they did not understand the things which He spoke to them. John 10:1-6
I have been going over this passage of scripture all day, yesterday. It was brought to my remembrance during my prayer time. So I grabbed my BIBLE and searched for the scripture. I wish that I was one of those people who know the scripture backwards and forward. As well as, their respective addresses. Well, I’m working on that. (wink, wink) However, I read it and then read the chapter before it. I did this to see if I was missing something and to ensure that I am getting a good understanding of the passage. Yet, here I am hours later, still looking at the same passage and asking God to speak to me.
It’s amazing to me, that is, how you can read a portion of scripture multiple times and learn something new each time. Well, that is if you are open to it. I have the basic understanding of what it is saying. Jesus is speaking to the Pharisees. He was letting them know that there was only one way to come unto the Father and that is through Him. So their belief or outward works would carry them over was, is, incorrect. The Pharisees was totally against Jesus and anything concerning Him. The reason was due to Jesus tearing down the walls of religious traditions, ceremonies, and so on.
I have also found it fascinating how within scripture, I would say, the most used metaphor for God, as well as those who believe are sheep and shepherd. Some may say that He was just using an example of using what they were familiar with. Mmm…I’ve heard someone say that sheep are the dumbest animals. So I had to take a peek into the behavior of sheep and I must say that I do not agree with this statement.
Some of the sheep behavior’s are as follows but are not limited to:
- Instinct are to herd (flock) together
- This is used for protection purposes and this is their only means of protection.
- Aids in allowing a dog or shepherd to help in protecting against predators.
- This method varies by breed.
- They are a flight risk when scared
- They scatter or run when they are frightened.
- Follow their leader
- Regardless, of where the leader is guiding them, they will follow. They blindly follow and do not buck up. Even unto death.
- They must be visually in contact with others.
- They hear very well.
- However, sudden, loud, and unnatural noises frighten them.
- To combat that the shepherd speaks softly, quiet and calm, to them.
- Depends heavily upon
- Has a wide view
- Ranges from 191-306 degrees
- Poor depth preception
- Avoid areas where they cannot see clearly (i.e. shadows & contrasts)
So again I do not agree that sheep are the dumbest animals. Especially, in relationship to God and his children. During time of trouble, harm’s way, they come together and allow their guardian to protect them. When frightened they run and don’t wait to know what is happening. They follow their leader without question or complaint. Their eyes are always looking at what is taking place with those around them.
The shepherd is like a parent watching over their flock. He or she feeds, leads, and protects them. Whatever the sheep needs the shepherd is right there for them. The shepherd sleeps at the gate of the home to watch over them. Each member of the shepherd’s’ flock knows his or her voice.
I must take a moment to refer back to the scripture.
They only, correct, way an individual or animal are to enter into the fold is through the gate. While the sheep are their a person is always at the gate. It may be the shepherd or the gatekeeper, porter (per KJV). Entrance by any other means is incorrect, robbery.
The shepherd knows each of his sheep and will speak to them, in manner in which they are receptive to the message. He knows how to gain their attention and moving in the right direction. They, shepherd and sheep, have an established relationship. A relationship built over time and is unwavering. The shepherd goes before and not behind the sheep. He does not lead them falsely but is sure. He leads them in a soft and calm voice. The sheep also know the voice of their shepherd and the sheep will not follow another’s voice. He knows how to keep them engaged and focused ahead. BUT with all of that being said the Pharisees did not understand what Jesus was saying.