John 10:1-10 ‘“I tell you the truth, anyone who sneaks over the wall of a sheepfold, rather than going through the gate, must surely be a thief and a robber! But the one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep recognize his voice and come to him. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice. They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice.’ Those who heard Jesus use this illustration didn’t understand what he meant, so he explained it to them: ‘I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me were thieves and robbers. But the true sheep did not listen to them. Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.’’’
There are people who came before Jesus, who spread a different gospel. There were Pharisees and Sadducees, who wanted to control people by using scripture and adding to the law. There were also false prophets, who told people what they wanted to hear to gain popularity. We have false prophets today, who just say what they think people want to hear because they want to have large and successful ministries.
By what standard are we living? What Gospel do we preach? Do we make Christianity harder to follow than it has to be because of our own moral code?
Do we make it too easy because we want to make everyone happy?
There is only one standard and that is God’s Word. Not taken out of context. Not any one book, but the whole of God’s Word, rightly divided. I think John Wesley’s method is helpful in that we discern God’s Word in conjunction with reason, experience and tradition. All are meaningful, all are part of us.
Yes, there are many religions and I have studied many of them. They all have some truths. They all help people in different ways. However, there is only one way to God. To those who say, “It’s not fair,” I say it’s not fair that God sent His only Son to die in our place. It’s not fair that Jesus was nailed to the cross, while we are forgiven and set free from the chains of sin.
You say, “I want to live my life the way I want.” Yet, Jesus said, “Not my will, but thine be done.” (LK 22:42)
There is a standard that stands stronger than that of others and stronger than our own.
No one has the power to condemn us because we are freed by the blood of Jesus.
As Christians, we have turned away from slavery to sin to be children of God.
So, how should we live? Where do we turn for guidance?
The ultimate guide is the Word of God. As a believer, God’s Holy Spirit is within you. Let God’s Spirit enlighten you as you read. Let the Holy Spirit convict you of your sin, comfort you when you feel condemned and change you through the reading of God’s Word.
Trust and Obey by John H. Sammis
“When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word, What a glory He sheds on our way! While we do His good will, He abides with us still, And with all who will trust and obey. Refrain: Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.”