Read John 9 - 10
In Today's Reading:
Healing the man born blind; Jesus, the Good Shepherd; religious leaders desire to stone Jesus
The religious authorities in Israel were considered the shepherds of Israel; but they were false, self-serving leaders, as Ezekiel had foretold: Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks? (Ezekiel 34:2). Ezekiel then revealed the True Shepherd: I will set up one Shepherd over them, and He shall feed them (the Saved), even My Servant David. . . . And I the LORD will be their God, and My Servant David a prince among them. . . . I will make with them a Covenant of Peace (34:22-25). This is usually understood to be the Messiah Jesus who would come through David's lineage.
Jesus identified Himself with the prophecy of Ezekiel when He said: I am the Good Shepherd: the Good Shepherd gives His life for the sheep. . . . a hireling . . . sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep, and flees: and the wolf catches them, and scatters the sheep. . . . I am the Good Shepherd. . . . and I lay down My life for the sheep (John 10:11-15).
One of the distinguishing marks of a Christian is recognizing the need for guidance and desiring to follow the Good Shepherd. The sheep follow Him: for they know His voice. And a stranger they will not follow, but will flee from him (10:4-5).
The Holy Spirit led the Apostle Paul to write: Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that Great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting Covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you that which is well-pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever (Hebrews 13:20-21).
Jesus also said: I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, who gave them (to) Me, is greater than all (John 10:28-29). Here Jesus reveals Himself as both coequal and coeternal with God the Father. How comforting it is to be assured that we have Jesus the Great Shepherd caring for us.
For you were as sheep going astray; but are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop (overseer) of your souls (I Peter 2:25).
10:3 porter = doorkeeper; 10:41 resorted = came.
For John 10:34: See Psalm 82:6.
Pray for The International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in honor of Henry Rogers · BP Staff: Diana Hash · Country: Albania (3 million) in southeastern Europe · Major languages: Albanian and Greek · Newly opened to evangelism · 40% Muslim; 11% Albanian Orthodox; 7% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Glorify God who is able to use national leaders to accomplish His purposes (Ezra 7:27-28).
Memory Verse for the Week: I Corinthians 6:10