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.
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. John 10:14, 15. TMK 52.1
Jesus says, “I know my sheep.” Let us consider this statement. We are known by God before we receive Him. “I know my sheep.” How do souls become Christ's sheep? By choosing to receive Him. But Christ had first chosen them. He knew every one who would respond to His drawing, and He knew every one who would be inclined to receive Him but who, through popular opposing influences, would turn from Him, John says to all, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Those who heard the voice and did behold Jesus as the Lamb of God believed in Him and became His property from their own choice. But ... their choosing of Christ was in response to His drawing. The love of Jesus was expressed to us before we loved Him.... TMK 52.2Read in context »
What fullness is expressed in the words, “I am the light of the world.” John 8:12. “I am the bread of life.” John 6:35. “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” John 14:6. “I am the good shepherd.” John 10:14. “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” John 10:10. This life is what we must have, and we must have it more abundantly. God will breathe this life into every soul that dies to self and lives to Christ. But entire self-renunciation is required. Unless this takes place, we carry with us the evil that destroys our happiness. But when self is crucified, Christ lives in us, and the power of the Spirit attends our efforts. OHC 21.2Read in context »
However lowly, however elevated we may be, whether we are in the shadow of adversity or in the sunshine of prosperity, we are His sheep, the flock of His pasture, and under the care of the chief Shepherd. HP 25.4Read in context »