Let’s read that wonderful portion. John 10:7-9 says, “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 Lord had just told a parable to some of the Pharisees concerning a door into the sheepfold. When they did not understand the parable, the Lord begins to explain it to them. Let’s look at John 10:1 where the Lord said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.” In this verse, He mentions a door into the sheepfold. In verse 7, the Lord explains that He is the ‘door of the sheep.’ The ‘sheepfold’ would indicate the nation of Israel, but being the ‘door of the sheep’, He was the way for the elect sheep of Israel to pass out of Judaism and come to Him. Notice that there is but one door. There is only one way into the place of God’s salvation and blessings. We read later in John 14:6, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

Not all those who came before the Lord were thieves and robbers. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Isaiah and many more true prophets came before Christ. The Lord is speaking of those who came under their own authority and for their own gain. The true people of God would not listen to them. Who were these ‘thieves and robbers’? Jeremiah 23:1 says, “Woe be unto the pastors that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! saith the LORD.” In Jeremiah’s day, there were those who took the position of leaders, but only destroyed and scattered the Lord’s sheep. We read in Ezekiel 34:1-2, “And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks?” Gamaliel spoke of false prophets in Acts 5:36-37, “For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to nought. After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed him, were dispersed.” So, we can easily see there were many men who came claiming authority to shepherd the Lord’s people. Many were found out to be false.

In John 10:9 the Lord once again assures us, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.” He is not only the door; He is also the good shepherd. In John 10:11 the Lord says, “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.”

Notice how that in Psalm 23:1, the Lord is presented as the ‘shepherd’. In John 10:11, He is presented as the ‘good shepherd’. And in 1 Peter 5:4, Christ is presented to us as the ‘chief shepherd.’

Let’s finish by reading John 10:16, “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.” The word ‘fold’ is used twice in this verse, but they are not the same Greek word. The second ‘fold’ is correctly translated as ‘flock’.   A ‘fold’ has boundaries, but no center. A ‘flock’ has a center, but no boundaries. The ‘fold’ would represent Israel, while the ‘flock’ represents the church, which has a center, who is Christ, but no boundaries. Anyone, regardless of race, color, or nationality is welcome to come to the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. In John 5:24 the Lord tells us, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.” (173.5)