Tuesday, February 27, 2007

John 10:11 – 21

I. What does it mean to be a “good shepherd?”

A. A good shepherd is a WATCHFUL WARRIOR.

1. Daivd’s example: But David said to Saul, "Your servant has been keeping his father's sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, [35] I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. [36] Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. [37] The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." [1 Samuel 17:34 – 37]

2. Big, scary, nasty things do not scare the good shepherd: “I went after it.”

3. David demonstrated an absolute dependence on the Lord.

B. A good shepherd is a PROVIDER, PROTECTOR, and PHYSICIAN.

1. PROVIDER: The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake. [Psalm 23:1 – 3]

2. PROTECTOR: Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. [Psalm 23:4]

3. PHYSICIAN: You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. [Psalm 23:5 – 6]

C. A good shepherd is SELF SACRIFICING [John 10:14]

1. This is a choice, not because of some inability.

2. The good shepherd goes as far as possible to save what belongs to Him.

3. It is an exercise of love for those who may not understand it.

D. A good shepherd is a KNOWLEDGEABLE KEEPER. [John 10:14]

1. There is a mutual knowledge.... Knowing God, being known by God.

2. This kind of knowledge comes from relationship.

3. Jesus loves us (even though He knows us).

II. What does it mean to be “sheep?”

A. We can form a “negative” image of the shepherd.

1. We think that Jesus just wants to take all the fun out of life.

a. Problem: how we define fun tends to be malignant (addictive, abusive, tyrannizing, and terrorizing).

b. Safety often requires common sense. (Ill. Of the pick up truck that hit black ice; right in front of me.)

2. We think that Jesus just wants to take all the joy out of life.

a. Problem: our view is often very short-sighted. (Immediate gratification –vs– delayed gratification... Why do we eat desert last?)

b. Sometimes we don’t even know what joy is...

B. We can develop a “positive” image of the shepherd.

1. We see Jesus as a rescuer. (Not necessarily healthy.)

a. (Ill.) of the people caught on Mt Hood this week. They did “everything right,” except get in trouble. (They were rescued.)

b. The problem is getting in trouble. Look to God as invincible when we need help.

2. We see Jesus as He loves us. (Develops humble gratitude.)

a. Incredible love to lay it down (by choice, on purpose) for us.

b. Infinite patience in dealing with us when we get stubborn.

c. Indubitable appreciation for us. (After all He created us.)

III. But what happens if we don’t what to fit into this picture?

(Excuses we give.)

A. Bad things have, are, and will happen.

1. There ARE thieves and wolves (that’s why the shepherd is necessary).

2. Satanic strategy is revealed.

a. [v 10] destroy the individual: steal, kill, and destroy.

b. [v 12] demolish the church: attack and scatter. (Sheep’s natural instinct is to flee, not fight. They regroup and look at their attacker. So the attack must be enough to scatter the flock.)

B. “I don’t belong.”

1. Jesus talked about “other sheep” – those not raised in the “correct” religious tradition.

2. Jesus talked about “other sheep” – those that are lost in the wild. Jesus searches for us.

C. “I’m not that bad off.”

1. Sheep with out a shepherd are vulnerable and in danger.

a. Predators generally separate out the week.

b. Predators are also efficient at stalking their victium.

If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it." [Genesis 4:7]

2. Sheep without a shepherd are unnatural.

a. You will follow someone/something. (Ill. “Judas goat”)

b. “Leadersheep” the sheep follow in difficult circumstances. (Ill. The sheep that followed off a cliff. 450 died, providing a cushion to save the other 1550 that followed over the cliff.)

3. Sheep without a shepherd are agitated and nervous.

a. Sheep are naturally suspicious, they don’t walk a straight line so they can look around and back. Their eye sight is very sharp. All this is heightened when they are not around their shepherd.

b. Sheep a easily annoyed and spooked.

BUT, what would happen if the sheep suspect or hope there is a better way than just become a pile of corpses?

IV. Maybe the sheep would notice:

A. That the good shepherd has taken the initiative.

1. Jesus fights for you. He laid his life down to save you.

2. Jesus has given you His undeserved, indescribable love and loyalty.

3. Jesus has a sincere appreciation for you.

B. That as sheep, wondering off is not a good idea.

1. We would be more attuned and attendant to the God’s voice.

2. We would have an appreciation and love for the good shepherd.

No comments: