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Garden City Christian Union Church

The Good Shepherds Sheep

Scripture Reading; Ezekiel 34:20-31

Quote John 1:1-5 Here we see...

  • Jesus as God

  • Jesus as the Life Giver

  • Being God and the Giver of Life He also reveals God and His will to us

  • He is the Light.

John 10:9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.

  • We will look at that door today and see Him claim these attributes that John spoke of in the first chapter.

  • It is necessary to understand the claims that He is making about Himself in order to understand the reality of what He offers those who trust in Him.

Jesus says, John 10:14 I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.... Vs 17 “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.” 19 Therefore there was a division again among the Jews because of these sayings. 20And many of them said, “He has a demon and is mad. Why do you listen to Him?” 21Others said, “These are not the words of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”

  • Jesus says that He has the power or Greek exousia: authority, freedom of choice to act which gives Him the ability...

  • Who has the ability to make such a claim?

  • Can you lay down your life?

  • Can you then take it up again?

  • It is no wonder that some of these people said He was crazy!

  • Is there reason to take this statement as a literal statement?

  • Is the Resurrection of Jesus historical fact?

  • It has very reliable historical evidence.

  • For those of us who call ourselves Christians it is a linchpin for our faith.

  • 1 Corinthians 15:17 And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!

  • Paul tells the Corinthians even more about the physical evidence for a real resurrection. 1 Corinthians 15:3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, 5and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 6After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. 7After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. 8Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

  • Paul says this is not something that happened in a corner and has no witnesses.

  • It happened when and where there were people hostile to Jesus and His followers as we have plainly seen in John's Gospel from the beginning.

  • We have a humongous amount of evidence from the Bible which is by far the best attested to ancient book that ever existed and which has more written about it than any other book in the world.

  1. Jesus died due to the rigors of crucifixion.

  2. Jesus was buried.

  3. Jesus' death caused the disciples to despair and lose hope.

  4. Many scholars hold that Jesus' tomb was discovered to be empty just a few days later.

  5. At this time, the disciples had real experiences that they believed to be literal experiences of the risen Jesus.

  6. The disciples were transformed from doubters who were afraid to identify with Jesus, to bold proclaimers of his death and resurrection, even being willing to die for this belief.

  7. The resurrection was central to their message.

  8. The resurrection was proclaimed in Jerusalem where the empty tomb was. As a result…

  9. The church was born and grew…

  10. …with Sunday the primary day of worship.

  11. James, Jesus' skeptical brother, was converted by the resurrection. [See: "James" in the WebBible Encyclopedia]

  12. Paul, the great persecutor of Christianity, was converted by the resurrection (Acts 9:3-9, 17; 1 Cor. 15:8; 9:1)

So momentous was this single event in the First Century that its effects have altered history more than any other.

  • In one of the oddest turns in history, a message centering on a dead “criminal” came to be proclaimed as “good news.”

  • Equally amazing was the extent of the Empire-wide transformation following its proclamation. The impetus for this message was the conviction that the same Jesus who was crucified was now alive again. These facts are admitted even by knowledgeable skeptics.

  • But the main point that I want to make to those here today, is the implication of it for those who trust in Jesus.

John 10:22 Now it was the Feast of Dedication in Jerusalem, and it was winter. 23And Jesus walked in the temple, in Solomon’s porch. 24Then the Jews surrounded Him and said to Him, “How long do You keep us in doubt? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.”

  • But look at the works that He had already done.

  • Water into wine

  • Healing the man who was lane for 38 years

  • Feeding the 5,000

  • Healing a man blind from birth

  • Isn't that evidence that He has power far beyond any man?

  • Here are those who have heard Him and seen His miracles again and again and now they say, “C'mon, tell us who you really are!”

John 10:25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. 26“But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.

  • Jesus says,

  • I told you.

  • I did miracles before you

  • You do not believe because you are not My sheep.

  • God the Father has not moved in your heart to make you hear.

  • You cannot Believe because you have not been born again or regenerated.

  • We need God to do a supernatural work in our lives.

  • Something that we cannot do on our own.

  • I pray that you hear the Good Shepherd's voice today!

John 10:27“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28“And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29“My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. 30“I and My Father are one.”

  • Assurance is Jesus' point here.

  • He is drawing a contrast. Be assured whichever side you are on, your destiny is certain!

  • The ones whom God has not given life to are hopeless and cannot even hear his voice.

  • They will not believe even if Jesus does miracles. Luke 16?

  • The ones whom God has given life to are absolutely secure in that life...

  • they shall never perish, neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.”

  • Many people don't have as much in their retirement accounts as they did six months ago.

  • They thought that they had some kind of assurance there right?

  • An article in USA Today says this, Thomas Kramer, a Baruch College marketing professor who studies consumer behavior, understands why some people afraid to look at their 401(k) might gaze into a crystal ball. "In times of uncertainty or stress, people tend to rely on superstition or magic," he says. "They want to get a sense of control over what is happening in these uncertain economic times and reduce the levels of stress or induce hope." Nina Melrose, 42, a Dallas soothsayer who reads palms and Tarot cards, advises clients on which stocks to buy, basing her picks "solely on my psychic ability." She declined to say how prescient she had been.

  • This is the kind of assurance that the world has. No one else knows what is going on so I will ask a psychic who won't even give me any indication whether what she says has any bearing on reality!

  • But it makes me feel better.

  • Here a man who has healed the lame, fed a multitude and turned water into wine says that He will die and rise from the dead in order to guarantee His promised results!

  • John 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

  • Jesus came into the world, God in human flesh for this very purpose!

  • To give us life that does not end!

  • John 10:28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.

  • Life that is more than mere existence

  • Life that Has God for its source.

  • Not in the general order of nature which He set in motion and governs.

  • But a special kind of life that is:

  • eternal

  • unchangable

  • guaranteed by God Himself

  • Supplied by God Himself

  • Is that better than the security that we get from people who claim to be in the know and yet won't even give us some odds on their reliability?

  • Paul begins his letter to the Ephesians with a prayer.

  • Ephesians 1:17...that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,

  • Paul says you believe in Jesus, see the power with which He does what He does.

  • The power that raised Jesus from the dead gives you life,

  • A power that Jesus says also keeps you,

  • John 10:29My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand.

  • Peter also begins his first epistle with a similar exhortation. 1 Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time

  • What a potent statement! Right off the bat in his letter he says,

  • Bless be the God and Father of our lord Jesus Christ!

  • Why? Because He has given us life or begotten us again.

  • How? Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

  • For What Purpose? To give us an inheritance that is “incorruptible, undefiled that does not fade away reserved in heave for you who are kept by the power of God...

  • Do you hear Jesus' voice today?

  • Maybe you say that Jesus has not claimed to be God yet in our text.

  • Is all of this really what He is guaranteeing?

  • Is it based upon His claim of deity?

John 10:31Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him. 32Jesus answered them, “Many good works I have shown you from My Father. For which of those works do you stone Me?” 33The Jews answered Him, saying, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy, and because You, being a Man, make Yourself God.”

  • They got that part of what Jesus was saying but refused to hear the rest of it.

  • They wanted to merit God's reward and not receive His grace and mercy.

  • JW's?

  • And so I pray that you do hear the voice of the Good Shepherd.

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