Summary: Eternal Security of the believer. Link inc. to formatted text, audio, PowerPoint.
Jesus, the Faithful Shepherd
The Bible is like a gold mine, and the deeper you dig the more rich gems you find. This shepherd chapter is like a crown jewel, and it is difficult to look away from its radiance.
Many in our lost world like to think of God as a mean ogre who laughingly enjoys striking with lightning bolts those who get out of line. But God is love, so much so that He wants to save us from wrath. And what a good shepherd is to his sheep is what Jesus is to us.
Everyone wants security.
We want job security and a bank account securing us. We want 'social security' but many of us may never see it.
We want national security. Thank God for our military who are out there every day keeping us safe so we can pillow our heads with our security blanket and without fear of what may come in the night.
We want relationship security - the concept of being loved unconditionally and knowing our loved ones will be forever at our side.
But there's a type of security much more important than all of these: spiritual security. We each have a never dying soul, and we need to know it is secure. We don't want to leave anything to chance. Hell is a fear we want to put away once and for all, while we rest in soul security.
Psalm 23 says the Lord is our shepherd...[quote] The entire psalm is about security. The sheep in that psalm brags about the security he has in his shepherd. He needs rest, and is made to lie down. He needs food, and is led to green pastures. He needs water, and is brought beside still waters. He needs to be able to find shelter in the fold, and though he is defenseless, a sitting duck, and walks thru the valley of the shadow of death, he doesn't have to fear. The wolves are all around, but he eats at a table in the presence of his enemies with no worries. He is bothered by pests buzzing around his head, and has the risk of nasal flies laying larvae that can drive him to butt his head against a wall until he dies, but the Lord anoints his head with oil to protect him. His cup runs over with good things every day, and forevermore!
The sheep has a security outside of himself. And we want that too. We need to know what happens to our soul after this body quits working! You know, your 'soul holder' can't hold out forever. Your soul will exist somewhere forever, and you want to know 100% for sure it will be in the fold of heaven, safe and secure.
Our Good Shepherd, our True Shepherd, is the Faithful Shepherd!
v. 28 'never' is a double negative in the Greek. "Not never." In English it's bad grammar, but in the Greek it's just a stronger, more emphatic way of making clear the point that it ain't never gonna happen, nuh-uh! It's like: "Perish? No way, never no never!"
Eternal security, soul security, sometimes called once saved-always saved. It's a clear and comforting doctrine. This is a major truth in God's Word, and it's always been amazing to me that some people debate it.
It's not even a gray area in my mind, and if it were a gray area, wouldn't God be wise to be careful not to accidentally deceive us on something so critical...if He really loves us? People err in gray areas. And if so, they could argue with God in heaven [if they found out they had salvation and lost it], and they could present mountains of Bible evidence, and would have a strong case against God! Do you think that's gonna happen?
If you are saved, then you are safe and secure! I guess it is debated by some because of how so many professing Christians seem to 'take advantage' of their soul security. I remind you that the Bible assures you that if that is your attitude, you've never been truly saved!
But remember, this chapter is all about the Shepherd and His abilities, not the sheep and anything of themselves. This doctrine of the Faithful Shepherd who secures us is all about His integrity and faithfulness, not ours.
In and of ourselves, we are insecure. Our security is provided by the Faithful Shepherd. He that saved us is the one who is faithful to keep us saved. Salvation: How did we get it? By grace, as a gift, and not of ourselves. How do we stay saved? The same way!
We are secure because:
1. We are in His possession.
v. 27 First 2 words. "My sheep". It's possessive.