Who Are You Following?

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Who Are You Following?

Who Are You Following?

John 10:27  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
29  My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.
30  I and my Father are one.

The context of these verses is interesting. These words are true. They come in answer to the Jews who hated Jesus Christ and Who rejected everything He had taught them thus far. Jesus reminded them of their hard hearts. They did not want to know the truth. They had already determined what they wanted to hear and Jesus was not telling them what they wanted to hear.
Paul warned of the same problem in II Timothy 4:

II Timothy 4:1  I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;
2  Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
3  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
4  And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
5  But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.

What is it that most people want to hear today. They want to hear words that scratch their itching ears. They want smooth words. They want sweet words.
The Psalmist declared this:

Psalm 119:103  How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!

The difference is in the heart. The Jews who were accusing Jesus had hard hearts. Nothing He could say to them would change that because they did not want to hear the truth. They did not want to acknowledge the need of a changed heart. They wanted to be seen as good enough. They wanted someone who would just give them what they wanted.
The Good Shepherd does not conduct surveys to see what people want. He knows what people need. When a person becomes one of God’s sheep, he or she will hear His voice. They will hear the message they have missed out on before that moment. Their ears will now be open to the truth. They will not be content with someone scratching their ears. They will want the truth. God’s Word will become sweet to them because He has changed their heart.
Jesus declared that He knows His sheep. No stranger can be in His fold. He knows everyone that is in His fold. When a person is saved, they are changed and they are brought into His fold. He knows them all.
We also see that Jesus’ sheep follow Him. That is the key to Christianity. Christians follow Christ. Think about the word “Christian”. The main part of that word is “Christ”. It should not seem strange that Christians would follow Christ.
How can a person know if they are following Christ or not? It is not based on law keeping. It is also not based on lawlessness. It is based on having the love of God in the heart. That love motivates the true child of God to behave like a child of God. Jesus Christ declared that He always did the will of His Father. He never hated anyone. He never promoted sin in any way. His life was holy and righteous.
Romans 10:4 tells us that the true child of God lives by the righteousness of Christ. The true child of God knows what sin is. John was directed to write:

I John 3:4  Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
5  And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.
6  Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.

This is not law keeping. It is the law within the heart of the true child of God that motivates the saved person to do what is right. The true child of God does not need a copy of the ten commandments on their fridge or on the door as they leave their home, etc. The true child of God has the law of God written in their heart and as they follow Christ, He brings that law into sharper focus in the life of the true child of God.
Jesus stated in John 10:28 that those who are His are given eternal life. Eternal life is not a license to sin. There are those who profess to be saved who claim that they can live in sin. This is not following Jesus. Jesus told the woman caught in adultery to go and sin no more. He told the paralytic that was brought to Him on a bed that his sins were forgiven. Jesus told the leper that came back to thank Him for healing him, that his faith had made him whole. He was forgiven of sin, not just healed of leprosy.
We know what sin is. Many have tried to redefine it, but even they know what sin is. Why try to redefine something if it is not sin?
Those who are truly saved have everlasting life and they shall never perish. They live in the light of Christ’s righteousness. They seek to glorify Him. No man can pluck them out of Jesus’ hand.
In verse 29 Jesus brings His Father into this teaching. His Father is greater than all. That does not make Jesus less than God. It simply shows us the order there is in the Godhead. In life, someone has to be in charge. We have the saying: “the buck stops here.” All authority is in God the Father.
After Jesus’ resurrection, He declared that all power was given unto Him. He did not become the Father. The Father simply bestowed all power unto His Son. His Son is the judge.
In our text, the Father is greater than all and no man can pluck a true child of God out of the Father’s hand. The true child of God is secure in the Father’s hand. The evil argument that tries to suggest that a person can still walk out of that hand is so foolish. No saved person would ever want to walk out of the loving hand of the Father and the Son.
In verse 30 Jesus makes it clear that He and the Father are one. They are inseparable. The Son can save because He is One with the Father. He is without sin and He is eternal.
The wise person trusts in God and trusts in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. The wise person wants to be led by the Good Shepherd. The wise person knows he or she is incapable of making wise decisions. The wise person desires God’s forgiveness and turns to Him for forgiveness. Are you a wise person?
Pastor Bartel

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