The Parable of the Sheepfold

TEXTJohn 10:1-6

INTRODUCTION:

A.      THE PURPOSE OF THE PARABLES AND THEIR RECEPTION.

          1.       They clarify and illustrate religious truths.

          2.       Not received – Why? (Matt. 13:10-16). Prejudice against the teaching.

B.      BACKGROUND SEEN IN REJECTION OF JESUS IN ch. 9.

C.      THIS PARABLE IS A DISTINCT AND SEPARATE ENTITY.

          SAME FIGURES USED DIFFERENTLY IN vs. 7 and 11.

E.      EACH SYMBOL HAS AN IMPORTANT MEANING.

I.      SHEPHERD – JESUS CHRIST.

A.      WE HAVE CHRIST’S ROLE COMPARED TO THAT OF A SHEPHERD.

          1.       Protects ( John 10:11-15;  1 Sam. 17:34-36 ).

          2.       Goes before – leads ( Psa.. 23;  John 8:32 ).

          3.       Feeds – poimen, “a feeder.” ( Psa. 23;  John 6:27, 32-35, 47-51, 63 ).

          4.       Watches ( Luke 15:3-7 ).

B.      JESUS IS THE SUPREME SHEPHERD ( Heb. 13:20 ).

II.     SHEEP – DISCIPLES.

A.      vs. 3.  THEY HEAR – HE LEADS ( vs. 4 ) THEY FOLLOW – KNOW HIS VOICE.

          1.       Christians follow Jesus ( John 8:32 ).  They must to benefit ( John 8:12 ).

          2.       Involves imitating him ( 1 Cor. 11:1;  Phil. 2:5;  1 Pet. 2:21 ).

          3.       Involves sacrifice ( Gal. 2:20 ).

          4.       Involves obedience ( Heb. 5:8-9;  Col. 3:17 ).

          5.       Disciples walk behind Jesus – Not in front! ( 2 John 9 ).

          6.       Involves a personal relationship.

                   a.       vs. 3.  “He calls them by name.”

                   b.       vs. 4.  “They know his voice.”

B.      vs. 5.  WILL NOT FOLLOW OTHERS ( Col. 2:8;  Phil. 1:9-11;  Heb. 5:14 ).

III.    SHEEPFOLD – BODY OF DISCIPLES.

A.      CONSTITUTES PLACE OF AUTHORITY FOR THE SHEPHERD ( Eph. 1:22-23 ).

B.      THAT WHICH IS MADE UP OF SHEEP ( Acts 20:28 ).

C.      PLACE OF SPIRITUAL BENEFIT ( Eph. 1:22-23 ).

IV.   DOOR – THE PROPER ENTRANCE FOR THE SHEPHERD.

A.      HELPS IDENTIFY THE TRUE SHEPHERD.  REAL SHEPHERD ENTERS THIS

          WAY.  EVERYONE ELSE IS A THIEF AND A ROBBER.

B.      THE DOOR IS FULFILLED PROPHECY ( John 5:36-47;  10:24-28, 37-38 ).

C.      APOSTLES AND JEWS WERE WITNESSES ( 1 Pet. 1:16-21;  Acts 2:22-24 ).

D.      SITE SOME EXAMPLES OF PROPHECIES:    Psa. 22 – Micah 5:2 – 2 Sam. 7:12-13.

E.      WHO ELSE HAS ENTERED BY THIS DOOR?

V.    PORTER – DOOR KEEPER, JOHN THE BAPTIST.

A.      JOHN THE BAPTIST PREPARED THE WAY.

          1.       Prophesied ( Isa. 40:3;  Mal. 3:1;  4:4-6 ).

          2.       Fulfilled ( John 1:6-8, 29-34 ).

B.      THE JEWS KNEW IT ( John 5:31-36;  10:40-42 ).

VI.   THIEVES AND ROBBERS – FALSE CHRISTS.

A.      EASY TO SEE – THEY FAIL TO FULFILL!!

B.      THEY WILL COME ( Matt. 24:4-5 ).

C.      CHRIST’S AGENTS ARE THE APOSTLES

          FALSE APOSTLES WILL COME, TOO ( Acts 20:29-30;  2 Cor. 11:13-15 ).

D       THEY MUST BE IDENTIFIED, TOO ( 1 John 4:1, 6 ).

CONCLUSIONTHE PURPOSE OF THE PARABLE.

A.      JESUS IS HERE CLEARLY SET FORTH AS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD –

          THE GREAT SHEPHERD

B.      WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH HIM?

          1.       Will you follow him as a disciple?

          2.       Will you reject him like the Jews?