The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. 11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. 12 But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. 13 The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. 15 As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16 And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd. 17 “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.” John 10:10-18 NKJV
Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.” And then again,“I lay down My life for the sheep.” And also, “My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.”
A Good Shepherd loves and cares for his sheep:
The good shepherd owns the sheep and is responsible for them and committed to them. A good shepherd risks his life for his sheep. A mere hireling – someone who takes care of the sheep only for money – will not put themselves in harm’s way for the sheep. When a threat comes, they will run away and leave the sheep to fend for themselves. David was a good shepherd and he killed a lion and a bear who were threatening his sheep. Jesus – the ultimate Good Shepherd – GAVE His life for His sheep. Jesus is fully committed to His sheep and all good pastors and ministers are also committed to love and care for Jesus’ sheep. However, false teachers and false prophets do not have this same commitment, because they have no love for the sheep.
The Good Shepherd gives His life for the sheep:
Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.”
Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth. Isaiah 53:4-17 NKJV
Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness — by whose stripes you were healed. 25 For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls. 1 Peter 2:24-25 NKJV
Jesus said that His Father loves Him because He was willing to lay down and sacrifice His life for the sheep. Isaiah 53:10-11 says, “Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand. He shall see the labor of His soul, and be satisfied. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, For He shall bear their iniquities.”
It pleased Father God for Jesus to carry our sins and to be bruised on our behalf and to die in our place, to justify many!
Jesus, the Good Shepherd laid His own life down for the sheep:
Jesus said, “My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself.” No one could take Jesus life – He laid it down out of His own will at the appointed time. Jesus’ death and resurrection was part of God’s plan for the salvation of the world. The timeline was under God’s full control – no one could kill Jesus without His consent.
Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.” John 19:11 NKJV
Jesus, the Good Shepherd laid His life down to take it up again:
Jesus predicted His own death and also His resurrection.
But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. 6 He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. 7 And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.” Matthew 28:5-7 NKJV
For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 NKJV
Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant. Hebrews 13:20 KJV
The Lord Jesus is that Great Shepherd of the sheep!