Today in John 10, Yeshua continues to speak of his job in terms of being the “Good Shepherd” – the one whose focus is solely on the health and well being of the sheep. Not only does the shepherd see to all the physical needs of the sheep, but he is their protector. He guards the flock from various predators that seek to “steal, kill, and destroy” the sheep.
He goes a step beyond that. He doesn’t just want us to be safe. He wants us to have life and have it abundantly. Merriam-Webster defines abundant as “marked by great plenty.” A happy sheep is a content sheep. The abundance of peace, contentment, and grace we find in the care of our shepherd, Yeshua, should be the source of our abundant life.
After Yeshua spends the first twenty-one verses of the chapter describing this shepherd/sheep relationship, we see him walking in the Temple at Chanukah and the crowd again seeks to call him out. “So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, ‘How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.’” (John 10:24)
Once again, Yeshua’s answer is controversial truth but not an outright statement that’s he’s the Messiah: “I and the Father are one.” (John 10:30) He does not say He is the Messiah, but instead He says that He is one with G-d. Their response comes as no surprise.
The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. Yeshua answered them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you going to stone me?” The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.” – John 10:31-33
Yet again, Yeshua calls them out for wrongly targeting Him and slips away unharmed. John’s narration of the life of Yeshua is clearly driven by the knowledge of hindsight. We see him highlight, time and time again, ways that Yeshua proclaimed to the people His position – today as Shepherd and protector of the flock of believers that would follow Him. He also brings to light the subtle and overt ways that Yeshua revealed Himself to the religious leaders. We can better understand the events that led to them being so incensed at this “blasphemous” and deranged or “demon-possessed” man that they would seek to have Him killed.
Baruch HaShem that G-d had John pen this account of the life of Yeshua. In it we receive encouragement, direction, life-giving words, and affirmation that Yeshua IS the Messiah!