The Gospel as Recorded by St. John
The Allegory of the Sheep-fold
“I tell you plainly, he who does not enter the sheep-fold through the door, but climbs in elsewhere, that man is a thief and a robber. But he who enters through the door is shepherd of the sheep. For him the door is opened by the door-keeper; and the sheep listen to his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out. And when all his own sheep have run out, he walks on before, and the sheep follow him, because they know his voice. A stranger, however, they will not follow; on the contrary, they will run away from him, because they do not know the voice of the strangers.”
This allegory was related by Jesus; but they did not understand what it was He was speaking to them about.
Jesus, addressing them again, therefore said: “I tell you plainly, I am the Door of the sheep. All who came before me were thieves and robbers; but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the Door. If any one enters through Me, he shall be safe; and he can come in, and go out, and find pasturage. The thief comes only in order that he may steal, kill, and destroy; I have come in order that they may enjoy life, and have it in abundance.
The Good Shepherd
“I am the Good Shepherd; the Good Shepherd lays down His own life on behalf of the sheep. The mere servant, because he is neither shepherd nor owner of the sheep, on seeing the wolf coming, leaves the sheep, and takes to flight; and the wolf snatches and scatters them. He takes to flight because he is but a servant, and cares nothing about the sheep. I am the Good Shepherd; and I know My own, and My own know me. And as thoroughly as the Father knows Me, I also know the Father; and I lay down My own life on behalf of the sheep. And I have other sheep beside these, which are not of this fold. Those also I must gather; and they will listen to My voice; and they will become one flock, one Shepherd. This is why the Father loves Me, because I lay down My own life, in order that I may receive it again. None can take it from Me; on the contrary, I resign it of My own free will. I have authority to resign it, and authority to take it back again. These are the instructions which I have received from My Father.”
The Judeans Divided about Jesus
A division came again among the Judeans in consequence of these declarations. And many of them said: "He has a demon, and raves; why do you listen to Him?" Others remarked: "These are not the thoughts of a demoniac. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?"
Fourth Visit to Jerusalem.
The Discourse at the Dedication Festival.
After this, the festival commemorating the re-consecration of the temple took place in Jerusalem. It was then the winter-time; and Jesus was walking about in Solomon’s aisle in the temple. The Judeans accordingly surrounded Him, and began asking Him:
“How long are You going to keep our minds in suspense? If You are really the Messiah, tell us so plainly.”
Jesus replied to them:
“I have told you, yet you do not believe. The works which I do by the power of My Father, they are evidence in support of Me. But as for you, you disbelieve because you do not belong to My sheep. The sheep that are My own listen to My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give them eternal life, and they shall never at any time be lost, and no one is able to snatch them out of My hands. What My Father has endowed Me with is mightier than all; and no one is able to wrest from the hand of My Father. The Father and I are one.”
The Judeans again armed themselves with stones, for the purpose of stoning Him.
Jesus addressed them: “Many are the beneficent acts which I have done for you from the Father; for which of these acts would you stone Me?”
The Judeans answered Him: “We will not stone You for a beneficent work, but for blasphemy; and because You, although You are but a man, make Yourself out to be a god.”
Jesus answered them: “Is it not written in your own law, I SAID, YOU ARE GODS?1 If they are called gods, to whom the message came from God (and the Scripture cannot be set aside), do you say of the One Whom the Father has consecrated and sent to the world, ‘You blaspheme,’ because I said, ‘I am Son of God?’ If I do not carry out the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I am carrying them out, although you have no faith in Myself, have faith in what I do, in order that you may understand more and more that the Father is one with Me, and I one with the Father.”
They then made another attempt to arrest Him; but He escaped from their hands. He accordingly returned once more to the other side of the Jordan, to the locality in which John was at first baptizing; and there He stayed. Many persons then came to Him; and they said:
“John, in fact, produced no evidence; but all that John said concerning this Man was true.”
And many persons there became believers in Him.
-------------1. Psa. 82:6
Transcribed by JT Atkinson on 02-20-2015