In John 10 (one of the Lectionary passages for this Sunday) Jesus lays out the image of a sheep pen, a gate, a Good Shepherd and a thief. In the Book of John, many of the images are loaded with double meanings and point to higher things.
Yet, here, Jesus declares himself to be both Good Shepherd and the gate. Here’s what the passage from John 10:1-10 says:
1 “Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. 2 The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5 But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” 6 Jesus used this figure of speech, but the Pharisees did not understand what he was telling them.
7 Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. 9 I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.[a] They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
Here is a “sermon” on this passage in 10 tweets:
1. You can’t make it on your own. The only way into the sheep pen is through Jesus, the Good Shepherd. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
2. Relationship with Good Shepherd always personal. Jesus knows you by name, you know his voice. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
3. When you know your Shepherd, you listen to his voice. Jesus is the Shepherd of Shepherds. Not even close. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
4. Knowing Shepherd leads you to run from imposters. Disciples don’t just run from danger – run to Jesus. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
5. Pharisees didn’t understand Shepherd image. Jesus sees it as so important that he repeats, emphasizes. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
6. After saying he is Good Shepherd, Jesus also says he controls gate to the Kingdom. Only one way in. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
7. Jesus is the gate to better pastures. If you are struggling, you need to find the best gate, find Jesus. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
8. Jesus is Shepherd, but there is a thief. Thief is intent on leading wandering sheep to destruction.
#sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
9. Goal of Good Shepherd is to bring life in fullest form. Life unfulfilling? Then, find the Good Shepherd. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd
10. Following Good Shepherd leads to better pastures, more peace, living life to fullest. Follow Jesus. #sermon #John10 #GoodShepherd