Summary: Sheep watch out for wolves that look like sheep.
Friday Matthew 7:15 WATCH OUT, SHEEP!
What is a wolf in sheep's clothing? Have you ever heard that before? Does it come from the Bible or is it just a religious cliché - beware of the wolf in sheep's clothing. It really comes from Matthew 7:15 where Jesus says, "Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves." The picture that Jesus paints here is that there is a flock of sheep, minding their own business, eating grass, drinking water. But if you look closely at one of the sheep, it's not really a sheep - it's a wolf that went to the costume store, and he rented out a sheep costume. He put it on, and he's acting like one of the sheep, until he gets close enough to kill one of them.
What is the point of this picture Jesus gives you? He's talking about people. You are one of his sheep - a Christian who wants to listen to the voice of the shepherd and follow him. You are grateful for the sacrifice the Good Shepherd made for you - that he laid down his life for you, and so you are following him. But then someone enters your life, and that person seems pretty harmless. Maybe he or she acts like a Christian, just like you. Maybe that person even says, "I'm a Christian." Only God can read the heart, so you believe that person.
This person is a wolf wearing sheep's clothing. This person fits in with you, gets along with you, and everything is good. This person blends in with the rest of the Christians. But inwardly, this person is not a Christian. And if you're not careful, this person will cause you to sin and hurt your relationship with God.
Do you know anyone that's a wolf in sheep's clothing? Who is the person in your life that you like, but this person causes you to sin? Yes, this person makes you laugh, and makes you feel good about yourself. This person could be a friend of yours, or a boyfriend girlfriend kind of a thing. You like this person. But, this person is a wolf in sheep's clothing. He tempts you to be disrespectful toward your parents and others in authority. She tempts you to be impure. He tempts you to experiment with all kinds of sins that you know are wrong. She tempts you to lie and cheat and steal.
Who is the wolf in sheep's clothing in your life? Who is that person who has snuck into the flock of Jesus Christ, and looks like a Christian else, but deep down, really isn't? Watch out, Jesus says. There are former Lakeside students who have graduated and have strayed away from the Good Shepherd. And it all began with that bad friendship, that bad relationship, that wolf in sheep's clothing.
Don't let that be you. Repent of all the times you've let someone else cause you to sin. Give those sins to Jesus. The Good Shepherd forgives you for every sin you have ever committed in your life. And now he invites you to follow him. My sheep listen to my voice, and they follow me. Let's follow our Good Shepherd. Let's trust in his love. Let's remember that he loved us so much that he laid down his life for us. I don't think that friend that causes you to sin would ever do that for you. But Jesus did. He cares that much for you. And he promises to bless you, as you follow him this weekend, this summer, and all the way into eternity.
Dear Lord Jesus, forgive me for all the times I've let someone cause me to sin. Thank you for reaching out to me and pulling me back into your flock again and again. Help me to resist sin. Help me to watch out for the wolves in sheep's clothing that come into my life. Help me to stay away from them, and to follow you, all the days of my life, that I might dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Amen.