Digging Deeper posts are intended to help us go farther into God’s word than a simple surface reading
and are designed to help us discover new tools in the process.
Curious as to why we Dig Deeper? Here’s Why!
7 So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9 I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. 17 For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again.
1) What does it mean when Jesus says He is “the door”?
2) Who are the “thieves and robbers” that Jesus refers to?
3) With whom is the good shepherd contrasted here? How are they different?
4) Who are the “other sheep” in verse 16, and what is their significance to me?
A trip to www.studylight.org is in order here.
We will get super cozy with this site as we study Scripture together!
Just type in the verse you’re looking at and Boom!
It’s right in front of you in English and Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament), which are the original languages the Bible was written in.
Want to know more about a specific word in a verse?
Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Find super awesome stuff like “origin”, “definition”, and even all the different ways that single word has been translated into English! If you want to be geeky, you can even click the word and hear its original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!
Want to get more background on a word or phrasing or passage?
Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))
The Findings for Original Intent
1) Context answers this question. “The door” is mentioned in verse 7 and again in verse 9, where we see that anyone who enters by “the door” will be saved. Therefore, “the door” is the way to salvation. Jesus is the way to be saved.
2) Verse 8 says that “all” who came before Christ are thieves and robbers, that the sheep didn’t listen to them, and that they came to steal, kill, and destroy. We see earlier in John that what separated Moses, John the Baptist, and the God-fearing prophets from “all the others” is that they “bore witness” to the coming Jesus. Jesus is saying here that “all who do not bear witness to Jesus are like robbers and thieves.” They took power instead of giving honor and glory to God.
3) The good shepherd is contrasted with thieves and robbers, and also with a hired hand. Thieves and robbers come to steal, kill, and destroy, while Jesus came that we would have life. A hired hand doesn’t care about the sheep, the good shepherd cares enough to lay down his life for the sheep. What other contrasts do you see?
4) Although the immediate context doesn’t answer this question, if we look in the surrounding verses, we can see that Jesus is speaking to a group of Jews (10:19) which included Pharisees (9:40). These Jews would have understood that “other sheep” referred to Gentiles, or non-Jews. If you’re like me and not Jewish, then this verse is significant, because Jesus is telling us that salvation and the abundant life it brings are available to all people, of all tribes, tongues, and nations, and that together we are one fold, one body, one church. Praise God!
Some Applications for Our Everyday Lives
1) Everyone must confront this question in their life: Have I trusted in Jesus Christ for my salvation? Do I believe that Jesus died to pay the penalty for my sin, that he was buried, and that he rose from the dead to defeat death and make a way for me to be reconciled to God, both now and for eternity? Jesus said, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” –John 14:6
2) Am I listening to any false Messiahs? Am I studying Scripture so that I recognize my Shepherd’s voice and so that I can discern when I hear false teaching?
3) The Good Shepherd comes that we may have life, and have it abundantly. Am I allowing Him to lead me and trusting that his way is the best way for my life, or am I listening to those who seek to destroy me?
4) God offers salvation to everyone, not just his chosen people—and that includes you and me. Am I extending on behalf of Christ that offer of salvation and abundant life to all people, or am I pre-judging whom I believe to be worthy of the message?
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!
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