Sermon- The Great Surprise, John 10:1 sermons -- Sunday Sermons preaching resources

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The Great Surprise

Truly I assure you: Whoever does not enter the sheepfold through the gate but climbs in some other way is a thief and marauder
John 10:1-10

Sermon Topic Last Judgment

Sermon Week Fourth Sunday of Easter Cycle A

Scripture Summary John 10:1


Jesus' life and teachings are full of surprises. He came to a generation of people who were expecting a "conquering-hero" type of Messiah and He told them that the Messiah would suffer and die as a common criminal. What a surprise! He came to a generation that, like ours, was steeped in the philosophy of revenge-an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life. He told them to turn the other cheek; to go the second mile; to love enemies, pray for them, forgive them. What a surprise! Jesus says that if we deliberately set out to save our life, we will lose it. What a surprise! He says that those of us who have money have about as much chance of getting into the Kingdom of Heaven as a camel has of getting through the eye of a needle. What a surprise! Jesus' teachings are full of surprises like this, but probably none greater than the one St. John refers to in today's Gospel Lesson. In it, Jesus depicts His relationship with us in terms of Shepherd and sheepfold. This is not surprising. Jesus frequently employed this imagery because sheep were the principal professions of His people. We must remember that, if we are to learn from today's text. They understood well the relationship between a good shepherd and his Hock. What always seems to come to us as a big surprise, however, is this business of not being able to enter into the Good Shepherd's sheepfold except by just one gate. It is one teaching of Jesus that continually surprises us, no matter how many times we've heard it. Let us recall it once more.

The picture is clear and simple. The king is on the throne. It is the day of judgment. The king separates the sheep from the goats: the sheep on the right hand go to eternal life; the goats on the left hand go to eternal punishment. You understand, of course, this is a parable. Jesus doesn't intend this as a description of life after death-where we're going [...]

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