December 20: “A Benefit of Following Jesus”

Today’s Bible Reading:

2 Chronicles 24
Revelation 11
Zechariah 7
John 10

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

John 10:10 (CSB): “A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

We love John 10:10, particularly the last part of the verse. It promises something that sounds very positive and very good. 

But, it’s quite possible that we don’t understand what it means. So, let’s spend a few minutes considering what Jesus meant by what He said.

As we read the verses that come before John 10:10, we hear Jesus comparing Himself to a sheep pen gate. He’s the doorway and protector of all those who trust in Him to bring them into a right relationship with the Father. 

He also points out that thieves (false prophets) tried to call people away from the Lord but the true followers didn’t listen. The thieves appeared to care for the sheep but they only cared about how the sheep could be used for their (false prophet’s) own purposes and benefit.

Then, Jesus spoke the words of John 10:10.

John 10:10 (CSB): “A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.

He makes it clear that there have always been people who claimed to speak on God’s behalf. They called for the sheep (people) to follow them and listen to them.

But, what happened to the sheep who followed those false prophets? They were harmed. They were used. Their only value on their leaders’ eyes was what their leaders could get out of them. The false prophets came to “steal, and kill, and destroy.”

What about Jesus? Can He be trusted to teach us and lead us? Does He genuinely care about His sheep (those who claim allegiance to Him) or is He in it for Himself, at the sheep’s expense?

John 10:10 (CSB): “A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.

Jesus claimed that the people who listened to Him and followed Him wouldn’t be used for the self-centered purposes of their leader. Instead, they would be blessed. They would have life to overflowing!

What does that mean? Do Jesus’ words mean that everyone who is trusting in Him for salvation will have an easy life? Does it mean that everything will go well with them?

I wish it did. But it doesn’t. Bad things have always happened to people who claimed to follow Jesus. In fact, it seems that those who most passionately follow Jesus have experienced the greatest difficulties.

What it means is that Jesus has given us life to overflowing, the life of God’s Holy Spirit within us. Yes, there will be plenty of times when we are reminded that we live in a broken, Genesis 3 world. Bad things will happen.

Yet we will also be reminded that He will walk through everything with us, His Holy Spirit will give us what we need when we need it (Matthew 6:33), He has promised to work everything for our good (Romans 8:28), and He has promised that will one day be with Him in Heaven forever!

It seems like a no-brainer to me! Commit to follow Jesus and be blessed, even if bad things do happen.

* * * * * * * * * *

Lord Jesus, I want to follow You with all my heart. I want to enjoy You and obey You. I know that I will be blessed as a result. I pray this in Your Name. Amen.

Photo by Yogendra Singh on Unsplash

Posted by

I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

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