Summary: Spiritually speaking there are some valuables that I want to keep safe in my walk with God. There are some things that I really value about living for the Lord Jesus Christ.

John chapter 10 is the teaching of Jesus about the sheep finding the true door, following the true shepherd, and avoiding the thief. According to John 10:10 the express purpose of the thief is to steal, kill, and destroy. He comes for no other reason but that of selfish gain. He comes not to bring the sheep to the pasture but to ultimately take the life from the sheep.

Psalm 100 says that we are his people and the sheep of his pasture. The devil is our enemy and the thief of the souls of mankind. He uses them for his own selfish purpose and when he is finished with them he kills them and destroys them, leaving them on the side of the road somewhere. Therefore the Bible tells us in 1 Peter 5:8 - Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: The devil wants to steal everything of value that is in your life and strip you of everything worthwhile and leave you with nothing at all except depression and discouragement. But that’s not all because he also wants your life as well. He wants to steal and kill and destroy.

But this evening I am thankful that John 10:10 did not end with what the thief wants to do but it continues on and it tells me and you what God wants to do in your life. While the thief has come to take life and destroy it God has come that he might give you life and give you a reason to live. In fact he said I not only want you to have life but I want you to have abundant life. I want your joy to be full the scripture says.

Let’s take a moment and thank him for abundant life.

In the USA Today newspaper on Friday, September 7th of this year, there was a headline on page 4D that said this: “Take a security expert’s advice to avoid travel theft.” The article began by stating this particular expert’s qualifications.

“Going on vacation? Better watch your wallet. Richard Lefler, former head of security for American Express, says growing numbers of travelers are falling victim to pickpockets and purse-snatchers. Lefler, who also spent 20 years of tracking bad guys at the U.S. Secret Service, talks to USA Today’s Gene Sloan about the latest thievery techniques and what travelers should do to keep valuables safe.

In this article, Lefler said that travel theft is on the rise and it can happen to anybody. He said, “I see it all over the world including major cities in the United States.” He admitted that two years ago it almost happened to him, of all people. When someone drops coins in front of you the natural response is to bend over and help them pick up the coins. Since I knew this kind of trick the first thing I did was reach back to check my wallet and when I did there was a hand reaching in my pocket to take it out. “They almost got it,” he said.

Another trick is what he called the airport security checkpoint distraction. You put your valuables on the belt and just before you go through the metal detector someone distracts you. Usually they appear to have picked up an airline ticket and ask you if you dropped it. This delays your getting through the detector and an accomplice picks up your things and by the time you get through your things are gone.

Another technique is the ketchup or mustard scam. Your standing by the airline gate when all of the sudden you realize that you have mustard squirted on your shoulder. The person who did it appears to be very upset and apologetic and tries to make it better by helping you to wipe it off. But at the same time a partner is walking off with your valuables.

Spiritually speaking there are some valuables that I want to keep safe in my walk with God. There are some things that I really value about living for the Lord Jesus Christ.

For example I love:

∑ The presence of the Lord

∑ His Spirit inside of me – the Holy Ghost

∑ His hand on my life

∑ The peace that passes all understanding

∑ The joy unspeakable and full of glory

∑ The love of God that he showers down on me

∑ The contentment

∑ The blessings of the Lord

And that doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of the valuable things he has added to my life.

So I want to always guard and protect my spiritual valuables because they are always at risk from attack by the enemy.

One of the saddest stories in scripture is found in the book of Judges. We read about part of that story in our scripture text. It is the story of a man called Samson. It appears in scripture in just a few short chapters in the book of Judges. He sat as a judge for the children of Israel for twenty years. Samson was a man that was used greatly by God, but Samson was also a man that had never quite conquered and gotten rid of his own lusts and his own desire for the things of the world.

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