I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, just as my Father knows me and I know the Father. So I sacrifice my life for the sheep. I have other sheep, too, that are not in this sheepfold. I must bring them also. They will listen to my voice, and there will be one flock with one shepherd. The Father loves me because I sacrifice my life so I may take it back again. No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded. John 10:14-18
Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. Romans 8:1-2
But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. Ephesians 2:4-10
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds. Titus 2:11-14
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
Why does the Good Shepherd need to sacrifice Himself for the sheep? It is all rooted in what God is like. He is Holy and righteous and these qualities of His nature demand that sin be atoned for. He is willing to atone for sin on our behalf through the sacrifice of His Son because He loves us so much and He knows we can’t reverse the problem of sin ourselves. He made us to be in a love relationship with Himself, but we have rebelled and are cut of from Him because of sin. What a marvelous thing it is that we matter to God, and that He was willing to send His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, who was both crucified and raised on our behalf. Jesus died for the sins of the world. The judgment of sin due to all of us was placed on Him. The judgment of sin is death and death is separation. Physical death is the separation of the spirit from the body. And spiritual death is the separation of the spirit from God. Jesus experienced both of these for us.
When the sins of the world were placed on Jesus during His crucifixion on the cross, He was separated from the Father. This is why Jesus said, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” And then after He said “It is finished” and as recorded, “gave up His spirit,” His double dying was completed. Through His resurrection Jesus overcame His own death and secured victory over physical death for the rest of us, but in addition, His resurrection validated the wondrous reality that His crucifixion truly did secure victory over spiritual death for all of us as well. The death, burial, and resurrection of Christ (I sacrifice my life for the sheep) substantiates beyond a shadow of doubt the amazing and all-encompassing love God has for us.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, it is clearer to me than ever before: your love gave us Jesus and his sacrifice satisfies your holiness. Thank you for the gift of forgiveness, the gift of your presence within me, and the gift of eternal life. All of this is mine because I have truly believed and received Christ as my Savior and Lord. I am convinced and assured that nothing can ever separate me from you and your love. Hallelujah. Amen!
Posted on Thu, October 26, 2017
by Ken Hart