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Spring 2021 Bible Reading Plan, Week 10: John 10 - The Door, The Good Shepherd, One with the Father

SPRING21BIBLEREADING

This week's Scripture passage is John 10.

(Click here for a PDF of this week's study.)

 

In John 10,  Jesus continues to reveal more of His identity, His mission, and His motives. 

This chapter follows directly after the man who was born blind, who Jesus healed, was cast out of the synagogue. He believes in Jesus and Jesus commends him for his humility and confronts the pride of the Pharisees (John 9:34-41).

Immediately, Jesus begins to teach about His flock and wonderfully declares that He is the door to the sheepfold and that anyone who enters by any other way is a thief and a robber. He then teaches that He is the Good Shepherd, contrasting himself with the prideful selfish Jewish leaders who just cast the healed man out of the synagogue.

Here in John 10, Jesus continues the use of the 'I am' metaphors that He began in John 6:35 and 8:12 where He declared, 'I am the bread of life' and 'I am the light of the world'. In verses 7 and 9, He says, 'I am the door'. In verses 11and 14, He says, 'I am the Good Shepherd'. 

In verses 3-17, 27,  Jesus teaches about the intimate relationship between Him and His flock. He knows them and calls them by name.  They know Him and His voice and follow Him; they will not follow another, whose voice they don't know. 

In verses 13-16, speaking of His gospel going to the Gentiles, Jesus talks about other sheep, not of this fold (Israel), that He must bring in so that there will be one flock.

In verses 11,15, 17,18,  Jesus foreshadows His crucifixion by saying 'he will lay down his life for his sheep'. He will not be a victim or a martyr, but will willingly, sacrificially lay down His life. He claims to have the power to lay it down (crucifixion) and take it up again   (resurrection). 

In verses 27-29,  Jesus, speaking of His sheep, declares 'I will give them eternal life, they will never perish and no one will snatch them out of my hand.' And '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'.

Later in chapter 10, during the Feast of Dedication, in answer to the question in verse 24: 'If you are the Christ, tell us plainly'... Jesus, in verses 22-39, directly and clearly states His intimate relationship with the Father and His identity. In verse 30 He says, 'I and the Father are one'. In verse 36 He says He is the Son of God. These statements confirm His claim of deity in John 8:58 where He said,  'before Abraham was, I Am.'  In both cases, the Jews, recognizing He was claiming to be God, picked up stones to kill Him for the sin of blasphemy.

Questions for Reflection and Discussion:

  1. In verses 1-9,  Jesus paints an interesting word picture, 'I am the door to the sheep. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved.' Shepherds would lay across the entry of the sheepfold, protecting the entrance from any intruder or animal. What can we learn about Jesus from His words and from this example?
  2. In verse 11,  Jesus says He is not only the door but also the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for His sheep. Compare this passage to Psalm 23 and then look at the character and responsibilities of a Good Shepherd.
  3. Read slowly through John 10 and Psalm 23 and write down the characteristics of our Good Shepherd and the benefits of being one of His sheep.
  4. In verses 28-29,  Jesus says no one can snatch one of His sheep out of His or the Father's hands. Meditate on this and share what the Holy Spirit confirms to your heart about your security in Christ and His redemption of your life.
  • When we, as one of His sheep, have fallen over that cliff and our Good Shepherd reaches down to rescue us, it is a tremendous relief and encouragement to finally realize the truth that our relationship with God, our salvation and our sanctification, is more dependent upon His grip on us than ours on Him!
  1. In verses 19-39, the Jews could not see or would not accept who Jesus was and claimed to be.
  • Read 2 Corinthians 4:1-6 and meditate on the actions of blinded minds and eyes by the god of this world and the incredible redeeming work of God to shine the light of His Spirit and truth into our hearts to open our eyes and minds to His gospel, the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
  • What was your heart like before and after Jesus made you a new creation in Him (2 Corinthians 5:17)? 


Click here to watch a YouTube video of a beautiful old hymn titled "Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us" about Jesus our Shepherd. Below are the lyrics to this old hymn:

Savior, like a shepherd lead us
Much we need Thy tender care
In Thy pleasant pastures feed us
For our use Thy folds prepare
Blessed Jesus, blessed Jesus
Thou hast bought us, Thine we are
Blessed Jesus, blessed Jesus
Thou hast bought us, Thine we are
We are Thine, who Thou befriend us
Be the guardian of our way
Keep Thy flock from sin defend us
Seek us when we go astray
Blessed Jesus, blessed Jesus
Hear Thy children when we pray
Blessed Jesus, oh blessed Jesus
Hear Thy children when we pray

Early let us seek Thy favor
Early let us do Thy will
Blessed Lord and only Savior
With Thy love our bosoms fill
Blessed Jesus, blessed Jesus
Thou hast loved us, love us still
Blessed Jesus, oh blessed Jesus
Thou hast loved us, love us still
Blessed Jesus, oh blessed Jesus
Thou hast loved us, love us still

-Dorothy A. Thrupp, 1836