Summary: Jesus declared He is the door of the sheep, the only means of entrance into the sheepfold. Through Him there is access to the fold, along with peace and security the Shepherd provides.

The Door of the Sheep

John 10: 7-10

In the opening verses of this chapter, Jesus discussed the benefits associated with being in the sheepfold. While inside the fold, the sheep enjoyed rest, peace, and security. The shepherd watched over and cared for the sheep within the fold. He was familiar with each one, calling them by name, while leading them in and out of the fold. The sheep gladly followed the shepherd, trusting in his gracious care for them.

Jesus also warned of those who came to deceive. These sought to be perceived as the shepherd but had come in some other way. These were not genuine shepherds, but those who originated from a different source, following a different path. Jesus described these as thieves and robbers – those who had no concern for the well-being of the sheep.

Having shared the benefits of the sheepfold and warned of false shepherds, some were still confused about the true meaning of Jesus’ words. Clearly one would understand and appreciate the door of the sheepfold. It was an essential element in the design of the sheepfold. To help them better understand, Jesus continued to share truth regarding the sheep and the sheepfold. He reveals another one of the great I Am statements, declaring Himself to be the door. As we examine the assurances revealed in the text, I want to consider: The Door of the Sheep.

I. The Prominence of the Door (7-9) – As Jesus begins to describe Himself as the Door of the sheepfold, He reveals the prominence of the door. Through His words we discover:

A. The Entrance (7, 9a) – Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. [9] I am the door. Jesus had spoken of the door into the sheepfold earlier in this passage. He revealed Himself as the Shepherd with legitimate access to the fold. Now He declares that He too is the door of the sheepfold. He remains the Shepherd, and He is also the only door or means of entrance into the fold. Acts 4:12 – Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

We need to understand what Jesus was speaking of here. He was painting a mental picture that all who heard would comprehend. He is not speaking of a door like the ones we are familiar with. In that day, sheep were kept in an enclosure of stone or branches formed into a wall. An opening was left for an entrance, but there was no literal door hung on hinges. The shepherd became the door of the sheepfold as he laid in the narrow passage way. He was literally their door, their defense, and stay.

B. The Resistance (8) – All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. Others had come prior to Christ promising acceptance to God, but they were only thieves and robbers. They sought to instill principles that required sums of money given, works performed, or rituals upheld. These never brought reconciliation to God and only robbed people of their time, money, and peace. Man has always sought another way to please God rather than through Christ. They resist the notion that He is the way of forgiveness and eternal life.

Surely many were deceived, but those who sought the Lord and were sensitive to His guidance did not fall victim to such false doctrine. They embraced the truths of God’s Word and recognized Jesus as the Christ. We too are surrounded by many who claim a different way, but we have received truth in Christ. The sheep of His fold will not heed the voice of strangers.

C. The Abundance (9) – I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. Jesus reveals the great abundance we enjoy through Him. Consider:

1. Our Salvation – by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved. All who come to Him shall be saved. He doesn’t reveal a chance of salvation, but a certainty of salvation. John 6:37 – All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.

2. Our Security – by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out. We also have the glorious privilege of going in and out. Now, don’t misunderstand the text. Jesus is not referring to multiple salvation experiences. The saved are eternally secure in Him. This is referring to the liberty and assurance we have in Christ our Lord. We no longer have to fear death or the storms of this life. We have confidence we are going to make it through Christ. 2 Tim.1:12 – For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

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