Summary: 3rd in a series on shepherding.

Sermon for 6/3/2001

John 10:1-15

Dirty, Dumb & Defenseless


The “Candid Camera” TV show went to an exclusive prep school where all of the students were well above average. The “Candid Camera” people posed as career consultants who were going to advise these brilliant young men concerning the careers that would be best suited to them, on the basis of “tests” and “interviews” that seemed quite authentic.

One young man eagerly awaited the “counselor’s” verdict. Surely the adviser would tell the boy to be a college president or a bank president, or perhaps a research scientist. But, no, the “counselor” had other ideas. You should have seen the look on the boy’s face when the “counselor” said:

“Son, after evaluating your tests and interview, I’ve decided that the best job for you is- a shepherd.”

The student did not know whether to laugh or cry. After all, who in his right mind would want to be a shepherd? Why devote your life to “stupid sheep” who do not seem to have sense enough to find their way home?


A. Read Matthew 9:35-38.

B. Why do we need a shepherd?

C. We are like sheep, harassed and helpless

D. 3-D view of sheep. Dirty, Dumb, and defenseless.

E. Last week, the Lord is my shepherd.

F. We must come to a certain realization before we can say these words. It is that we are like sheep. God cannot be our shepherd if we are not sheep. Overinflated ego or will.

G. We are goats if we refuse to act like sheep. Goats are not shepherded; they are herded. They are stubborn and mean. At the judgement seat of Christ, these are sent into everlasting punishment.

H. The D word that summarizes sheep is dependent.

I. If sheep were left alone in the wilderness, what would come of them? They would not survive. Other animals can be left alone, but sheep cannot be.

J. Men like to talk about their independence. This is good to a point. We should not be like Kings or Queens who do nothing. However, we are dependent creatures. Our food, clothing, health, breath, strength, everything comes from the Lord, and we are constantly dependent upon Him.

K. People who are in nursing homes and completely dependent. We are that way with the Lord.

L. (Jer 10:23 NIV) I know, O LORD, that a man’s life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps.

M. If man directs his own steps, he comes to ruin.

N. (Prov 16:25 NIV) There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.

O. Like a sheep, without the Lord we die.

P. We think we are something, when really we are nothing but dirty, dumb, and defenseless sheep. Humbling!

Thesis: This morning we are going to look at the needs of sheep and how the Lord meets every one of these needs from John 10:1-15.

For instances:

I. Dumb

A. Sheep are dumb animals. We are dumb individuals. We need direction.

B. Little Bo Peep has lost her sheep, and doesn’t know where to find them, leave them alone… Not!

C. Not completely dumb, they know their shepherd. They know his voice. They hear him calling them each by name. They love him. They follow him.

D. I am the door of the sheep. Vs. 7, 9

1. The shepherd became the door in a sheepfold. Shelter was set over one opening. After all the sheep had been counted and brought into the pen, the shepherd lay down across the doorway so that no intruder could enter without his knowledge. The shepherd became the door.

2. Jesus is saying that He makes it possible for the sheep to leave the fold and to enter His flock.

3. Jesus is the Door of salvation. He is the Door to a happy and contented life.

4. For sheep to be happy they must have security, food and drink, and a field for exercise.

5. This word “saved” means “delivered safe and sound.”

6. We need to go behind the Lord’s defenses if we are to pass through life without fatal harm. We are safe in the sheepfold. Stay in the sheepfold. (Micah 5:4 NIV) He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God. And they will live securely, for then his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth.

7. As we go “in and out” we enjoy abundant life (superabundance) in the rich pastures of the Lord.

8. Pasture refers to purpose. Created to do good works. Sheep is no good without a shepherd. Have no purpose without a shepherd.

9. Jesus’ sheep enjoy fullness and freedom.

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