I - know my sheep - I know, τα εμα, them that are mine: I know their hearts, their wishes, their purposes, their circumstances; and I approve of them; for in this sense the word to know is often taken in the Scriptures. Homer represents the goatherds as being so well acquainted with their own, though mixed with others, as easily to distinguish them.
Τους δ 'ὡς 'αιπολια πλατε 'αιγων αιπολοι ανδρεςπ
Ῥεια διακρινεωσιν, επει κε νομῳ μιγεωσιν .
Iliad. 2. 474.
"As goat-herds separate their numerous flocks
With ease, though fed promiscuous."
And are known of mine - They know me as their father, protector, and Savior; they acknowledge me and my truth before the world; and they approve of me, my word, my ordinances, and my people, and manifest this by their attachment to me, and their zeal for my glory. The first clause of the 15th verse should be joined to the fourteenth.
Know my sheep - Know my people, or my church. The word “know” here is used in the sense of affectionate regard or love. It implies such a knowledge of their wants, their dangers, and their characters, as to result in a deep interest in their welfare. Thus the word “knoweth,” in John 10:15, is in John 10:17 explained by the word “loveth.” Jesus knows the hearts, the dangers, and the wants of his people, and his kindness as their shepherd prompts him to defend and aid them.
Am known of mine - That is, he is known and loved as their Saviour and Friend. They have seen their sins, and dangers: and wants; they have felt their need of a Saviour; they have come to him, and they have found him and his doctrines to be such as they need, and they have loved him. And as a flock follows and obeys its kind shepherd, so they follow and obey him who leads them beside the still waters, and makes them to lie down in green pastures.
Then said Jesus unto them ..., Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. John 10:7. LHU 197.1
Satan took the field in person against Jesus Christ. Evil angels conspired with evil men to resist good, to trample upon righteousness, and all the energies of evil were confederated together to destroy the champion of God and truth. While success seems to attend the masterly activity of Satan, Jesus takes the field to contest his power. Jesus came “unto his own, and his own received him not.” He was charged with an embassage of mercy, sent of the Father at a crisis when rebellion had overspread the world, in order that man should not perish, but have everlasting life through faith in the Son of God. Through Christ they were to bruise the serpent's head, and gain eternal life.... LHU 197.2Read in context »
Christ's illustrations were taken from the things of daily life, and although they were simple, they had in them a wonderful depth of meaning. The birds of the air, the lilies of the field, the growing seed, the shepherd and the sheep—with these things Christ illustrated immortal truth; and ever afterward, when His hearers chanced to see these objects, they recalled His words. Thus the truth became a living reality; the scenes of nature and the daily affairs of life were ever repeating to them the Saviour's teaching. CT 261.1
Christ always used simple language, yet His words tested the knowledge of deep, unprejudiced thinkers. His manner of teaching should be followed by teachers of today. Spiritual truths should always be presented in simple language, that they may be comprehended and find lodgment in the heart. Thus Christ addressed the crowds that pressed and thronged about Him; and all, learned and unlearned, were able to comprehend His lessons. CT 261.2
In every school the instruction given should be as easy to understand as was that given by Christ. The use of long words confuses the mind and eclipses the beauty of the thought presented. There is need of teachers who will come close to their students and who will give clear, definite instruction, illustrating spiritual things by the things of nature and by the familiar events of everyday experience. CT 261.3Read in context »
“Speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee.”
The Great Teacher brought His hearers in contact with nature, that they might listen to the voice which speaks in all created things; and as their hearts became tender and their minds receptive, He helped them to interpret the spiritual teaching of the scenes upon which their eyes rested. The parables, by means of which He loved to teach lessons of truth, show how open His spirit was to the influences of nature and how He delighted to gather the spiritual teaching from the surroundings of daily life. Ed 102.1Read in context »
Youthful talent, well organized and well trained, is needed in our churches. The youth will do something with their overflowing energies. Unless these energies are directed into right channels, they will be used by the youth in a way that will hurt their own spirituality, and prove an injury to those with whom they associate. GW 211.1
Let the heart of the instructor be linked with the hearts of those under his charge. Let him remember that they have many temptations to meet. We little realize the objectionable traits of character given to the youth as a birthright, and how often temptation comes to them as a result of this birthright. GW 211.2
The guarding care that the under-shepherd will give the lambs of his flock is well illustrated by a picture I have seen representing the Good Shepherd. The shepherd is leading the way, while the flock follow close behind. Carried in his arms is a helpless lamb, while the mother walks trustingly by his side. Of the work of Christ, Isaiah says, “He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom.” [Isaiah 40:11.] The lambs need more than daily food. They need protection, and must constantly be guarded with tender care. If one goes astray, it must be searched for. The figure is a beautiful one, and well represents the loving service that the under-shepherd of the flock of Christ is to give to those under his protection and care. GW 211.3Read in context »