Don’t Listen to Strangers

John 10:1-10 ESV

“’Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.’ This figure of speech Jesus used with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.

“So Jesus again said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.’”

Jesus Christ is the door to our salvation, to us being in relationship with Jesus Christ, to us being members of the body of Christ, and he is the door into the kingdom of God. He is the way, the truth, and the life, and no one comes to the Father except through him. But there are many people who profess faith in Jesus Christ but they did not enter the sheepfold by the door, but they climbed in by another way, so although they are among the Lord’s sheep, they are not his true sheep.

So, what does this look like exactly? Well, Jesus said that if anyone would come after him he must deny self and take up his cross daily (daily die to sin and to self) and follow (obey) him. For if we hold on to our old lives of living in sin and for self we will lose them for eternity. But if for the sake of the name of Jesus we are crucified with Christ in death to sin, and we are raised with him to walk in newness of life in him, and we now walk in obedience to his commands, then we have the hope of eternal life (see Luke 9:23-26).

Jesus also said that not everyone who says to him, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven but only the one DOING the will of God the Father who is in heaven. For many are going to stand before Jesus on that day, calling him “Lord” and claiming all the things they did in his name, and he is going to answer back to them, “I never knew you. Depart from me you workers of lawlessness.” And this is because they were not obeying the Lord but they were workers of lawlessness, instead (see Matthew 7:21-23).

So, it is not enough to just make a profession of faith in Jesus Christ. We aren’t saved from our sins on lip service only. Just because you prayed a particular prayer or you made a public confession of Jesus as Lord, it doesn’t mean that Jesus is Lord (Owner-Master) of your life or that you ever knew him, in truth. For if you claim to be in fellowship with Christ, in partnership with him, in cooperation with him and his work of salvation, but you are still walking in sin, deliberately and habitually sinning against the Lord, then you are a liar and the truth is not in you (1 John 1:5-10; 1 John 2:3-6).

So, those who climb in by another way are those who are not going through the door, Jesus Christ, for they are not entering by way of the cross, by way of dying with Christ to sin and being raised with him to walk in newness of life in him and now walking with him according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. Their sins have not been put to death for they never let go of them. They are still holding on to them. So their old self was NOT crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that they would no longer be enslaved to sin (see Romans 6:1-23).

Now Jesus Christ is the shepherd of the sheep. And His sheep hear (listen to) his voice, he knows them, and they follow (obey) him. And he gives them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of his hand (see John 10:27-28). So obedience to our Lord is essential to our salvation. For if we do not obey the Lord, and if we continue in deliberate and habitual sin, then we will not inherit eternal life with God. It is what the Scriptures teach.

So, don’t listen to the “strangers” who are telling you that you can just pray a prayer or make a public confession of Christ as Lord or merely just receive God’s grace and his salvation, and now you are forgiven all your sins, and heaven is guaranteed you when you die, regardless of how you live your lives while you are still on this earth. Listen to the truth of what God’s Word teaches. And this is why I include Scripture references so that you can read what the Scriptures teach. But read them in context.

[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

The Prayer

Written by David Foster, Carole Bayer Sager,
Alberto Testa and Tony Renis

I pray you’ll be our eyes
And watch us where we go
And help us to be wise
In times when we don’t know

Let this be our prayer
When we lose our way
Lead us to a place
Guide us with your grace
To a place where we’ll be safe.

I pray we’ll find your light
And hold it in our hearts
When the stars go out each night
Remind us where you are.

Let this be our prayer
When shadows fill our day
Lead us to a place
Guide us with your grace
To a place where we’ll be safe.

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P.S. This is not an endorsement of the singers other than as musicians

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