- John 10:10
Topic: Greater is He, part 3
Teacher: Tim Heath
Text: John 10:10
John 10:10 (KJV)
10The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.” (NKJV)
- The thief (which symbolizes false messiahs) and the hired hand (which symbolizes corrupt religious leaders) have evil intentions. They seek to steal, and to kill, and to destroy the sheep. They care only about feeding themselves or making money off of the flock. Jesus pictured a heartless individual who began by taking all he could and then killing what he couldn’t have. Anything else he destroyed. God’s people, Israel, had suffered through more than their share of evil leaders, false prophets, and false messiahs (see, for example, Jeremiah 10:21-22; 12:10; Zechariah 11:4-17).
- In contrast to the thief who takes life, Jesus gives life. The life He gives right now is abundantly richer and fuller. It lasts forever, yet it begins today. Life in Christ is on a higher plane because of His forgiveness, love, and guidance. Which would you rather face—the evil thief or the loving Shepherd? Easy answer, right!
“I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”
- Jesus gives abundant life to his sheep. This speaks of the gift of divine, eternal life, a life which becomes the possession of every believer for now and for eternity. Jesus would provide his sheep with this eternal life, and it would cost him his own life.
Jesus promised to provide abundant, or full life to the sheep. One of the first images that comes t o mind is the cup described in Psalm 23:5, which is described as filled to overflowing by the Shepherd who is the Lord. Abundance of life points to depth of living now and length of living in eternity. It is not only life as good as it can be, but also life beyond what we can imagine!
Jesus gave this full life to the blind man who had been abandoned by his parents and rejected by the religious system (see John 9). It is clearly not, however, a life that denies problems and pain. Rather, it is a life that faces them and makes use of them. Instead of letting us focus on the ups and downs of life, Jesus takes us deep into life itself, where there is a calm center even in the storm.
Later Jesus told his disciples, “In this world you will have trouble” (16:33), thereby removing any last hopes that he was leading his followers into a life of guaranteed earthly happiness and prosperity. Even the beautiful pastoral scene Jesus described in this chapter does not allow us to forget the danger of thieves, the presence of death, and the daily hardships of coming in and going out.
MONDAY MORNING MOMENT: “DON’T BE PASSIVE, FIGHT FOR ABUNDANCE”
Be a Berean “Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eager ness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.” Acts 17:11