John 10:1-6 ESV
“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” This figure of speech Jesus used with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.
We, who are believing in Jesus Christ for our salvation from sin, are his sheep. Collectively we form the body of Christ, his temple, his church, his bride. So, we are the sheepfold. And, the only way into this sheepfold, i.e. church, is through genuine faith in Jesus Christ, which incorporates both repentance (leaving our lives of sin behind us) and obedience (following Jesus Christ with our lives in whatever he calls and requires us to do.
Nonetheless, there are those who do come into the gatherings of the church by another way. They are not, however, true sheep, so they are not truly of his sheepfold, but they join in with them as though they are one of them. They pretend that they are true sheep when they are not, for their purpose is to steal from, kill, and destroy the true church and its gospel message.
The other way they enter into these gatherings is via the institutional church, which is not the true church, though some of the true church does exist within it. For, it is an institution of human origin, and it is a business of man, and it is the church joined together in an unholy union with the federal government of the USA (in America), which is then in cahoots with the beast New World Order of the wealthy and the powerful elite of the world.
The stranger this speaks of incorporates anyone who is serving in any kind of leadership capacity within the church gatherings who is not a true sheep, but who is one of these thieves and liars who are out to destroy both the church and the gospel message of our salvation. The stranger, thus, is like a motorized vehicle trying to run us down, and so we have to flee in order to not get run over.
But, in actuality, the stranger is a large body of those who are vehemently opposed to Jesus Christ and his gospel message, but who have disguised themselves as true sheep in order to deceive, manipulate and force compliance with a one-world religion and with the one-world government of the beast of Revelation, for this is where all this is headed. These strangers have entered into the gatherings of the church via the institutional church and they have introduced teachings which are contrary to scripture and which are leading people astray from following Jesus Christ in obedience.
So, we who are the true sheep must flee these strangers, but not run away in the sense that we do nothing and we just hide out until Jesus comes back. For, we must stand strong in our faith, and we must put on that armor of God daily with which to fight off these evil attacks that are of Satan. And, we must speak the truth and expose the fruitless deeds of darkness so that others are not led astray to follow a false hope cheap grace gospel.
John 10:22-30 ESV
At that time the Feast of Dedication took place at Jerusalem. It was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the colonnade of Solomon. 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.” 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.”
The false shepherds of the sheep, i.e. these thieves and liars who are out to destroy the true church and the gospel message of salvation, love to quote John 10:28-30, promising all those who will make a profession of Christ as Savior of their lives that once they are in, they can never be out.
They will teach them that all they have to do is repeat some words after them in a prayer and then they congratulate them that they are now part of God’s family and that heaven is guaranteed them no matter what; no matter how they live their lives from this moment forward. And, this is cheap grace, for it does not put sin to death in the life of the “believer,” nor does it require a life of holiness and walking in righteousness and purity.
Thus, they willfully leave out the verse which precedes this, which is v. 27: “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”
What this is saying is that God’s true sheep listen to his voice, he knows us, and we follow (obey) him as a matter of course, as a matter of practice, as a matter of lifestyle. This is not saying we have to be perfect or that we will never sin again, but what this is saying is that we revere our Lord, we honor him, we respect him, and thus we follow (obey) him with our lives.
And, we are the ones who have eternal life with God, and who will never perish, and who will never be snatched out of God’s hands, because we are his true followers, not those who make a profession of Christ only, but then still live their lives to please the flesh and not to please the Spirit. So, always read scriptures within their context and in light of scripture as a whole.
It isn’t, though, that those who hear the truth, who still continue on in the flesh, do not know the truth, but that they choose not to believe the truth. So, they choose to pick and choose what they will believe which will fit with the lifestyles they want to continue living, while they ignore the rest.
For, it wasn’t that Jesus didn’t tell the Jews who he was. He did! But, it is that they chose not to believe what he said. And, that is true of many people today who profess faith in Christ but who choose not to believe what he taught.
And, he taught that we must die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness if we want to have eternal life with him. And, this is not a one-time event, but it is how we live our lives day in and day out. For, he said that if any of us want to come after him, we must deny self, take up our cross daily (die daily to sin) and follow (obey) him (Lu. 9:23-25).
And, he said that if we hold on to (embrace) our former lives of meandering with no fixed course, wandering aimlessly, just doing what our flesh desires, straying from the truth, and refusing to do what we know is right, and unwilling to cease doing what we know is wrong, then we will die in our sins. But, he said, if we lose our lives for his sake, i.e. if we daily, by the Spirit, put to death the deeds of the flesh, and we follow (obey) Jesus, then we have eternal life with God (See: Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 8:1-17; Gal. 6:7-8).
Yet, it is only by God’s grace than any of us can live this crucified life, dead to the flesh, and alive to God in Christ Jesus, our Lord. For, his grace is what freed us from our bondage to sin, and it is what empowers us and strengthens us to live godly and holy lives, pleasing to God. We cannot resist Satan, and flee temptation, and stand up for what is right, and resist what is wrong in our own flesh. We can only do this in the power of God’s Spirit now living within us. All glory to God!
But, when we yield to God’s Holy Spirit, and we allow him to have control over our lives, then we will listen to our Lord Jesus, and we will follow him, and we will do what he says, because we are doing it in his power and not in our own. Through him and him alone we can have victory over Satan and the flesh, and we can live victorious Christian lives no longer in bondage to sinful practices and sinful addictions. For, Jesus set us free, by his grace!
An Original Work / November 29, 2018
Based off various scriptures
Cast your cares upon your Lord.
Come to Him
All you who’re weary.
Know that He will
Give you rest.
Take His yoke upon you
And learn from Him
And you’ll find your rest.
For His yoke is easy
And His burden’s light.
It’s His to bear.
Find the peace of Christ in heart.
Let the peace of Christ
Rule in your hearts,
And be then
And, the peace of God
Which is beyond all
We can comprehend
Will guard your hearts
And your minds in Christ,
For He is Lord of all.
Hope in God will not betray.
Let us hold
The hope that
We now profess.
For the One
Who promised hope
Is faithful to
His ev’ry word.
Therefore, with minds
That are sober,
Set your hope
On Christ’s return.
Wednesday, December 5, 2018