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. 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. (John 10:7-10, NIV)
Sheep have no defensive qualities. They lack the ability to protect themselves against predators and those that seek to harm them. During the days of Jesus, in cities, sheep were kept overnight in pens in the city. For the protection of the sheep, there was only one gate into the pen. A man was hired to watch this gate overnight. He was to protect the sheep from any who would seek to steal or harm the sheep. In the morning, only certain shepherds were allowed in to gather their flocks.
Outside of cities, sheep still spent the night in pens, often the low walls were made of stone. Again there was only one entrance into the pen. As the shepherd was on his own, he would lay his own body across the entrance to the pen to sleep. He became a human gate to protect the sheep.
We are the sheep seeking to enter into the Lord’s flock. As there was only one entrance to the sheep pen, so there is only one entrance into the Lord’s flock. That entrance is through Jesus Christ! In His third I AM declaration, Jesus declares that He is the Gate.
Jesus also stands guard over His flock. He protects them for those who seek to lead them astray. However, we must also be willing to listen to His voice and do as He instructs. Jesus wants all in His flock to thrive and grow. We may not always understand the reasoning behind His instructions, but it is for our benefit.
So what does this mean for us? Jesus is the only way! There is no workaround. No alternatives. No back doors. Jesus is the only way to salvation. It is only through Him that we are saved!
*Some translations of the Bible use the word Door instead of Gate.
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