April 24, 2022
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.
3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
5 And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.
6 This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.
7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
8 All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.
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.
10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
Psalm 95:7 King James Bible
For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. Reading the above verses is like a fountain erupting and we think of all the other references – the lost sheep (the ‘ninety and nine), we all have gone astray (like sheep) – you know them well and they stay in our hearts because we know the truth of them.
Why would we ever wander off and leave the Good Shepherd? Because, as in Morning Prayer, General Confession: We have offended against thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to
have done; And there is no health in us. The answer to the question is ‘We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own
hearts.’ (General Confession, 1928 BCP). We keep trying to make Jesus in our image – thank God we can never accomplish that. He is the way, the truth, and the life and we need to keep ourselves in the flock of the Good Shepherd.