Introduction (from 4/23/2017 Sermon): The Gospel is based on both the Old and the New Testaments. The Gospel must go forth in the power of the Holy Spirit – the Gospel is a Spiritual message.
Today’s Message: In John 10, Jesus is speaking about the “shepherd” -- the “shepherd”: 1) enters through the gate; 2) has the gate opened by a watchman; 3) sheep listen to his voice; 4) calls each sheep by name; 5) leads his sheep by going ahead of the sheep; and 6) has a voice by which he is known to his sheep and they follow him. In the first century, shepherding was an intimate profession; and the shepherd was always with his sheep. The shepherd talked to his sheep, and the sheep knew the shepherd’s voice. Also, in John 10, Jesus talked about the “false shepherd” who is a “thief and a robber”. The sheep do not follow the “false shepherd”. Jesus says that the “thief (false shepherd) comes only to steal, kill and destroy”.
In John 10:7-10, Jesus says that He is the “gate”, and He is: 1) the way (gate) by which we are saved from our sins and eternal death; and 2) we are provisioned for a full life as His followers. Like the sheep that follow the good shepherd, if we follow Jesus, we will all hear His voice.
How do we know the voice of Jesus? Consider that: 1) we must enter only through the gate – Jesus: 2) we must be a sheep of the Good Shepherd and follow Jesus through an intimate relationship with Jesus; 3) we must learn to listen (for example, today we listen through the inward witness of the Holy Spirit – the Holy Spirit is charged with communicating the will of God to mankind and to sync our mind with the mind of God); 4) we obey as we listen – in the New Testament, the words “hear” and “obey” are the same words – God will speak directions for our lives; and 5) we don’t harden our hearts to the voice of the Lord – listen to His voice and obey.
As the Lord says: “Be still and know that I am God.” (Psalms 46:10).
TODAY’S AFFIRMATION: I affirm that because of what God has done for me in His Son, Jesus, I AM A CHILD OF GOD. Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His Name, He gave the right to become children of God-- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God. (John 1:12f).
SCRIPTURE REFERENCE (ESV): John 10:1-18; Ezekiel 34:22-34; John 5:25-29: Ezekiel 43:2;1 King’s 19:12; Isaiah 30:21; John 10:27-30; Hebrews 3:7-15.
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