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Saturday, April 13 2013
The Sheep Door
"Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep"
The Twenty-Third Psalm is about how God's "sheep," while under the care of a good shepherd, have nothing to fear - from predators, or from the shepherd.
"23:1 A Psalm of David.
The English word "pastor" is a direct derivative of pasture, a place where sheep live and are tended. Just as there are "good shepherds," such as described above, so too there are those who look only to being "lords over God's heritage" for "filthy lucre." They have no concern for the sheep, only for themselves.
"5:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; 5:3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. 5:4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away." (1 Peter 5:2-4 KJV)
"The good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep"
A parent will fiercely defend their child against anything or anyone that seeks to cause it harm. So too, the reason that a true shepherd of God's flock will defend them with his life is because the flock is his life, whereas "he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep." A "hireling" shepherd's interests and priorities are elsewhere.
"10:1 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. 10:2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 10:3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. 10:4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. 10:5 And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers. 10:6 This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.
A prime Biblical example of a "hireling shepherd" was Diotrephes, a pastor who actually drove some of the good sheep out of the pasture, while abusing those who remained under his "authority" (see also Firing The Founder).
"1:1 The elder unto the wellbeloved Gaius, whom I love in the truth.
Fact Finder: When and how is the Messiah, our Shepherd, going to separate "the sheep from the goats"?
This Day In History, April 13
1598: The Edict of Nantes was promulgated by Henry IV of France. It granted political rights and some degree of religious freedom to the French Huguenots. The edict remained in effect for 87 years.
1759: French forces defeated the European allies at the Battle of Bergen.
1829: The British Parliament granted freedom of religion to Catholics in Britain.
1849: The Hungarian Republic was proclaimed.
1861: After 34 hours of bombardment, Union-held Fort Sumter surrendered to the Confederate forces.
1913: An assassination attempt on King Alphonso XIII of Spain by an anarchist failed.
1959: A Vatican edict prohibited Roman Catholics from voting for communists.
1960: France became the 4th nation with atomic "weapons of mass destruction."
1960: The first navigational satellite was launched into Earth orbit.
1970: An oxygen tank exploded on Apollo 13, causing an abort of the moon landing and near loss of the crew.
1999: Dr. Jack Kevorkian was sentenced to 10 to 25 years in prison for murder - the killing of a terminally ill man who wanted to commit suicide. He taped the killing which was shown on the CBS program 60 Minutes. Kevorkian claimed to have assisted over 130 deaths during the previous 10 years.