Jesus said, “Very truly, I tell you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate but climbs in by another way is a thief and a bandit. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. They will not follow a stranger, but they will run from him because they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus used this figure of speech with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.
So again Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits; but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
Three lines in particular stand out for me in this week’s Gospel. Firstly, when Jesus says “I am the gate.” I love this line because it illustrates so clearly the reason we are able to go to heaven – Him. Without His sacrifice on the cross there would be no way in for us. He truly is the gate.
The second line is “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.” This line is obviously talking about Satan. It got me thinking as to which parts of my life Satan might be trying to act. I think one of the main things Satan accomplishes in our lives is to steal our time. We already know that the UK has the longest working hours in Europe, but it’s the time not spent at work that I’m talking about. Let me be the first to put my hands up and say that I am an internet addict! I definitely spend too much time on Facebook. You do too – c’mon admit it! Apart from the obvious lack of verbal communication with our spouses due to our technology obsession, there is another side effect. According to figures from the National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal) Britons are having less sex than ever as the rise of modern technology means there are more things to do, experts have claimed! What a depressing thought. Perhaps this evening I’ll invest more time updating my marriage than updating my status!
The third line is “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” This line speaks of our life. Human life is eternal. It starts at the moment of conception and goes on forever. At death life is changed, not ended. Jesus came to establish God’s kingdom here on earth and to die for us. He gave His own life, and by His triumph over death at the resurrection He opened the way for us to progress from His kingdom on earth (our earthly life) to eternal life.
Thought for the week…
“I am the gate.”
Thank You for being the way, the truth and the life for me. Help me get to know you better.
Thank You, I love You Jesus. Amen.