What Does John 10:9 Mean?

"I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.

John 10:9(NASB)

Verse Thoughts

When Jesus said, "I Am the Good Shepherd," He claimed to be the true Shepherd of Israel. He declared Himself to be the legitimate Shepherd Who was anointed by God as foretold by prophets of old. Scripture clearly teaches that Jesus was sent by God to care for the lost sheep of the house of Israel and that He came to fulfil the oath that God swore to their forefather, Abraham, and his seed forever. Jesus was the hope of all nations Who was sent from heaven to redeem His people from their sin and to save them from their enemies.

Jesus came at God's appointed time to protect the sheep of His pasture and to expose the false, careless shepherds who slaughtered the sheep, scattered the flock, and created havoc and hardship within the sheepfold. The idle shepherds of Israel were careless with God's people devouring the flock, abandoning the sheep, and scattering them far and wide. They were the worthless herdsmen, spoken of by the prophets, who lack integrity and carelessly desert the flock when they see a wolf approaching.

Not only was Jesus the Good Shepherd Who gave His life for the sheep, but He also claimed, "I am the door." He said, "I am the door of the sheepfold, if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture." His reference to being the Door of the sheepfold in this verse may be unfamiliar to us in the fast-moving world of the 21st century, but to Christ's contemporaries - and the sheep-herding nation of Israel, He not only presented a very familiar picture but claimed, yet again, to be the only way to God: "For there is no other name given among men whereby we must be saved."

During the time of Christ, every town and hamlet would have one, common sheepfold into which flocks of sheep would be herded at nighttime to keep them safe from predators. Every sheep-pen would only have one doorway - a single opening through which flocks of sheep would enter each evening and be protected from wild beasts, during the nighttime hours. The shepherd would act as door, or doorkeeper, by blocking the entrance to the pen with his own body so that no lion or wolf could secretly enter the enclosure and destroy his flock. The sheep would respond to their shepherd's voice... and he would both guard the sheep against all enemies and allow them to go in and out of the sheepfold, to find pasture.

Jesus is not only the Good Shepherd Who leads His flock beside still waters causing them to lie down in green pasture; He also protects the vulnerable little lambs and His defenceless sheep from all the evils that stalk His people. He is the One Who leads us in the paths of righteousness, lightens our darkness, and by His great mercy and power, protects us from the enemy's arrow that flies by day and the terrors that lie in wait at night. No wonder the great Shepherd of the sheep told His disciples, "Fear not, little flock,"... "For like a shepherd He will tend His flock. In His arm, He will gather the lambs and will carry them in His bosom. He will gently lead the nursing ewes." 

In this passage, Jesus is the 'Door' in a number of different ways. In the early verses, we see Him as the one, TRUE Shepherd from God Who was prophesied of old to give His people safety, liberty, refreshment, and protection as opposed to false herdsmen who are a gateway into death and destruction. Israel was the means (the door) through which Jesus entered the world, for He came to the lost sheep of the house of Israel as the Jewish Messiah of the house of David... but He also came as Saviour of the whole world - in Whom are the words of eternal life. Jesus is the Door to salvation for ALL who believe.

This verse makes it very clear that Jesus must be acknowledged as the one and only doorway to salvation and that anyone who enters through Him (believing Jews and believing Gentiles) will be SAVED. Anyone who believes in Him will receive the free gift of SALVATION: "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved," Paul told the Philippian jailer, while the Gospel of John made it clear to Nicodemus, a teacher of the Jews, that God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son to be the Door to bring us back into His holy presence, for "whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." 

Jesus is the Way, and He is the Truth. He is the Light of the world, and in Him is Life, for He is the Fountain of Life, the Water of Life, the Tree of Life, the Bread of Life - the Resurrection and the Life. Yes, Jesus is the only Door through Whom we must pass if we are to secure all the precious promises of God, which are 'YES' and 'AMEN' in Him.

Praise God that Jesus is the Door through Whom we will pass from death to life, by faith... and that anyone who enters through Him will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture, not only in this age but in the ages to come - for Jesus is the One Who protects us from the evil schemes of the devil, guards us from the dangers of this fallen world system, secures salvation for all who believe, sustains our spiritual health, promises us a place in Christ's heavenly kingdom, and is keeping, for us, an eternal inheritance in the eternal ages to come. 

May we, who have gone through the Door of Salvation and been brought into the heavenly realm by faith in Him, enter into the fullness of Christ as we feed on Him in our hearts by faith with thanksgiving, growing in grace and in a knowledge of our God and Saviour - Whom to know is life eternal.

My Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You that Jesus is all we need for life and godliness. Thank You that in Him are the words of eternal life and that He is the Good Shepherd of the sheep and the singular Door into the sheepfold. Thank You that in Him we have been made Your sons and daughters and that the many promises of God are ours, through faith in Him - not only in this world but in the ages to come. May I live and work to Your praise and glory. In Jesus' name I pray, AMEN.

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