Hirelings and the Shepherd

Jer 3 v 15

Don Fortner 

“This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them. Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father. There was a division therefore again among the Jews for these sayings. And many of them said, He hath a devil, and is mad; why hear ye him? Others said, These are not the words of him that hath a devil. Can a devil open the eyes of the blind?” (John 10:6-21)

George Whitefield once declared, “As God can send a nation or people no greater blessing than to give them faithful, sincere, and upright ministers, so the greatest curse that God can possibly send upon a people in this world, is to give them over to blind, unregenerate, carnal, lukewarm, and unskilled guides. And yet, in all ages, we find that there have been many wolves in sheep’s clothing, many that daubed with untempered mortar, that prophesied smoother things than God did allow.”

Wolves in sheep’s clothing were prevalent in the days of Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. Continue reading

Slave, or child?

freedom_by_gyaban-d4y03ct

Translated and adapted by Grant Swart from the original work of Johannes de Koning 

RELIGIOUS SLAVE, OR CHILD OF GOD?

– the all important truth in understanding Christian freedom

Is your relationship with God that of a slave, or a child? It is an important question and one about which Galatians 4:1-10 makes one ponder.

“1. Additionally, I need to state the following: While an heir is still a minor, his position does not differ markedly from that of a slave, even though the inheritance belongs to him.

2. Until such time as determined by his father, he will remain under the supervision of guardians and his possessions will be controlled by his managers.

3. That is how it is with us as well. While we were yet spiritually immature, we were slaves of legalistic religious rules.

4. Once the time which had been determined by God had arrived, He sent His Son to us. He was born of an earthly mother and from the time of His birth, He was subject to the Law,

5. in order to pay the penalty for our freedom from the Law and so that we could become adopted children of God.

6. Because we have become His children, God has sent the Spirit of His Son to our hearts, and He calls out from us, “Abba!” which means, Father!

7. You are therefore, no longer a slave, but a child of God, and because you are His child, God has also made you His heir.

8. There was time when you did not know God during which you were slaves of useless idols.

9. However, since you have come to know Him, or rather, since He now knows you, why would you revert back to those inferior and pitiful legalistic religious rules? Do you want to become slaves Continue reading