Jesus is clear: he is the gate for the sheep, and he is the one who gives life to the full. There are many voices in the world calling for people to follow them. They came before Jesus and they came after him. The Lord addresses these voices as our one and only Good Shepherd.
7 Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. 9 I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
Jesus doesn’t have much time for those who came before him claiming to be the ‘way to God.’ He calls them thieves and robbers. I bet he would say similar things about those who came after him. Jesus is the gate. He is the way (John 14:6).
Why the harsh words, Jesus? Because the others who try to call the sheep lead them away from Jesus and not to him. They either lead the sheep toward false hope or toward something sinister in which the sheep are fleeced. Either way, the outcome is destruction.
Jesus is clear: he is the gate for the sheep, and he is the one who gives life to the full.
Many people do not know or believe that Jesus made such bold statements. He’s the good guy. I like Jesus. It’s Christianity and Christians I don’t like with all their talk of being born again. There may be some good reason for people to dislike Christians (we should own that and change it pronto).
But make no mistake, the exclusivity of the Christian faith and the necessity of being born again spiritually through faith in the one and only Jesus is teaching directly from the Saviour’s own lips.
“I am the gate,” Jesus said.
Let us enter and find full life and lush pasture.