The Good Shepherd, Jesus

Posted by admin on 2 November 2014 in John |

John 10:1-18

  1. Jesus – the Gate (1 – 10)


Jesus said the man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep (2). If a man, who climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber (1).


Then, what is the gate that the shepherd enters by? See v7.


7Therefore Jesus said again, "I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep.


Jesus himself is the gate.  The man who enters by the gate Jesus is one who recognises and believes Jesus and he is the shepherd of his sheep.


Jesus entrusted his sheep to his servants like us. Entering through the sheep gate Jesus, we are able to be a shepherd to his sheep (2). Shepherd should understand their character & ability by calling them by their names and lead them by being an example (3).


See v9 and 10.


9I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.


“Entering through Jesus” is the condition of salvation both for shepherd & sheep (9).


Jesus is the gate of ‘salvation’ (9a) and the gate of ‘life in its fullness’ (10b).

As the conclusion of part 1, let us read v1 and v2.


1"I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. 2The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep.



  1. Jesus – the Good Shepherd (11 – 18)


Jesus is the good shepherd (11, 14). Difference between the good shepherd and hired hand is that the good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep (11) but hired hand does not (12).


See v12-13.


“The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.”


Less than 24 hours before Jesus was laying down His life for His sheep, He went with His disciples to a place called Gethsemane at night. He was sorrowful and troubled (Matthew 26:37). He said to His disciples Peter, John and James, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” (Matthew 26:38) Then He prayed “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” (Matthew 26:39)


This event shows how much Jesus was overwhelmed with sorrow before the arrest and death. The hired hand abandons the sheep and runs away in this situation. But Jesus loved the sinners like us who were going to be judged and condemned before God. In order to save us, Jesus the good shepherd chose to die for us. So, His sacrifice touches my heart violently. And no one in the world can be compared with Jesus Christ who laid down His life for His sheep.


David sang the Lord being my shepherd in Psalm 23 as below:


1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD


See v16.

16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.


Here this sheep pen means Jews. Other sheep that are not of this sheep pen is the Gentiles. He doesn’t say He will have them but He has them already. He must bring them also. They too will listen to His voice. Believing Jews and Gentiles will make up one flock under one shepherd.


See v17-18.


17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”


I lay down my life-only to take it up again foretells His resurrection after His death (17).

Also, as shown in v18, His life is not taken from Him by anyone but He lay it down by His choice and His authority.


The night a large crowd armed with swords and clubs came to arrest Jesus, Jesus said,

53 Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?” (Matthew 26:53, 54)


Jesus had power to escape from the arrest. Jesus was laying down His life by His own choice.

As prophet Isaiah prophesized in Isaiah 53,

5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

Jesus is our Saviour who took our sins away. He is the Good Shepherd who laid down His life for His sheep.


Finally I want to remind us of the abundant life in the Good shepherd Jesus Christ by quoting following verses from the Holy Bible:


Romans 8:32 says


32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?


John 10:10

10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.


3 John 1:2

2 Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.

Sheep is a stubborn, short-sighted, unintelligent, weak, and vulnerable animal. Without shepherd, sheep is lost and virtually dead. Without our Saviour, Jesus Christ, we are like “sheep without shepherd”.


Thank you for being our shepherd, providing us life & life in its fullness. We commit our lives in your care by faith and follow you to the green pastures and quiet waters. Lead us today and every day. Amen.


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