My Sheep Hear My Voice

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Mark Osgatharp, Nov 4, 2005.

  1. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    Calvinists use Jesus words found in John's record of the "good sheperd" dialogue to teach that some unbelievers are counted among God's sheep. Ironically, the passage teaches the exact opposite. In fact, it is one of the strongest proofs against Calvinism to be found in God's word. Let's look at what Jesus actually said.

    The subject at hand was whether or not Jesus was the good shepherd - the Christ - foretold by the prophets since the beginning of time. Jesus said many had come claiming to be the Shepherd, but His sheep always rejected them, knowing they were imposters.

    These false messiahs proved their real character by forsaking the sheep. Jesus, on the other hand, would prove His love for His sheep by sacrificing His life for them.

    It is in this context that Jesus told some of the Jews that they were not His sheep and that this was evident from the fact that they did not believe on Him; for all His sheep, without fail, heard His voice when He called. His words are,

    "But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me."

    Jesus bluntly affirms that all of his sheep hear His voice. Conversely, any man who does not hear His voice - which is to say, does not believe on him - is not one of His sheep.

    Now even the most ardent Calvinist will acknowledge there was a time in his life when he did not know, believe in, or follow the Lord in any sense of the word. All parties acknowledge that out an out athiests, infidels, and pagans can, and have been, converted to faith in God.

    Therefore, every man who nows believes in Christ, and is therefore counted among the sheep, must acknowledge there was a day when he was not a believer and therefore not one of the Lord's sheep. I don't know how words could be more conclusive. Let's read it again:

    "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me."

    But, the Calvinist will tell us, did not Jesus say that He had other sheep who were not of this fold? Yes, indeed He did, and Caiphas' prophecy tells us who these "other sheep" were when He prophesied that Christ would,

    "gather together in one all the children of God that were scattered abroad."

    When Jesus made His first advent, God had children - which is to say, believers - scattered throughout the whole world. Most of these were probably Jews and there were also Gentiles who had converted to faith in Christ. What they all had in common was that they had not yet heard the news that Christ had actually come in the person of Jesus of Nazareth.

    And so Jesus said that these sheep would come to know Him for who He was, at which time they would be one with those who had already received the news.

    There is not one iota of Calvinism in these words. To the contrary, everything in them militates against Calvinism. In fact, on that occasion Jesus called on the very same men who were not His sheep to believe on Him that they might receive life. They were invited, though not sheep, to believe and join the fold of the sheep. His words are,

    "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him."

    Note: these are the same men who Jesus told just moments before, "ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep."

    So here are the salient features of the good Shepherd discourse:

    1. Jesus was the long awaited Messiah of the Jews - the great Shepherd of the sheep.

    2. The true sheep - which is to say, believers - under the Old Covenant had rejected all false messiahs, but immediately and without fail heard the voice of Jesus when He presented Himself to them.

    3. There were many among the Jews who were not believers - not the Lord's sheep. Jesus called on these men to believe on Him and enter the fold.

    4. The message of Jesus as the Messiah eventually went out to all of God's sheep who, who were scattered throughout the whole world, and when they heard they, like their brethren living in Palestine, embraced Him as their long awaited Messiah.

    5. Jesus proved He was a good Shepherd by laying down His life for the sheep, by keeping them unto eternal life, and by inviting all men into His fold.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  2. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.

    My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all ; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one."

    KJB
     
  3. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    By the way I have nothing good to say about myself.

    But my Father in heaven is One that I would surely praise and talk about!

    Jesus said;

    My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all ; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one."

    I really trust that my Father in heaven is greater than all! I hate this world...I must have been made for another world!

    KJB
     
  4. 2BHizown

    2BHizown
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    Prov 27:2 Let another man praise you and not your own mouth; a stranger and not your lips.

    You make great contributions here KJB and always give God the glory! What could be better!
    We are instructed to 'tarry' till He come so we will continue our work in the vinyard, planting, watering and giving God glory for bringing the increase!
    Blessings!
     
  5. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    I note that after 24 hours no one has even attempted to answer this post.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  6. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    Mark,

    We are using our life line and calling a friend.

    His name is Jesus.

    Thanks,

    KJB
     
  7. 2BHizown

    2BHizown
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    Guess I'm having a hard time just figuring out what your question is Mark!
    Until our hearts are regenerated by the Holy Spirit we remain in our sin, all of us! Only God knows who He has and will choose to be HIs own. At the time of regeneration we turn in response with repentance and hunger to know HIm! The sheep knew HIs voice because they belonged to HIm. They discerned the voice of their Lord and Master. They believed because they belonged. They didnt belong because they believed! When once one turns in response to the call of the Holy Spirit they then 'know in whom they have believed and that He is able to keep that which is committed unto Him until that day!' 2Tim1:12
    Blessings,
     
  8. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    2BHizown,

    Jesus said that those who do not believe are not His sheep. That means when you didn't believe you were not His sheep.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  9. 2BHizown

    2BHizown
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    \


    Thats what we said! Correct! Until a man places HIs faith(given to him by God) in Christ he is lost! But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ(by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus, for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Eph2:4-10
     
  10. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

    “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep. I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

    Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you. My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.”

    The Father has given His Son a Kingdom. It will be filled with subjects. These are His sheep.

    They in His due time will be called. His work in them will enable them to hear His voice when He does call.

    The Father, The Son, and the Spirit, are united in effort and will.

    All had gone astray. He is making it clear with this illustration that He has sheep and He will take care of them. They will hear His voice. It does not mean that in the sense of time He has called each one in yet.

    But as all things are worked out according to His council....He will in due time gather all of His sheep.

    Sheep may be lost. But they still belong to the Shepherd. The Rightful Owner of the sheep knows His sheep. When they hear His voice they respond.

    His sheep may wander and be lost at times but the Good Shepherd finds His sheep.

    There are many sheep in His fold. And He loves His sheep. He will leave 99 of His own in a safe place to go after 1 that has wandered away.

    His sheep do no have free-will in the sense that they will follow after another voice. His sheep will not hear other voices.

    Those that never come to believe are not His sheep.

    KJB
     
  11. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    King James Bond,

    To start with, Jesus said His sheep hear His voice, not "will hear His voice". Jesus said those who do not believe are not His sheep, not, "Those that never come to believe are not His sheep." You reworded what Jesus actually said to fit your doctrine.

    Jesus said the men who did not believe in Him were not His sheep, and proved so by the fact they did not believe. Just a few moments later, Jesus exhorted these same men to believe on Him.

    Now do you believe Jesus was exhorting men He knew could not possibly believe to believe? Don't answer by talking about how we don't know who is and who isn't a sheep because Jesus knew that these men were not His sheep and said so to their faces. But then He called on these same men to believe.

    How do you make sense of that?

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  12. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    Mark,

    Jesus was using an illustration.

    Even believers may not understand all illustrations on everything.

    I will say that both will happen. As He brings in His sheep (gathers) they will hear His voice.

    I did not re-word it. Here it is again with the specific text highlighted;

    “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep. I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice ; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

    I make sense out of it easily. The outward call is towards all people to repent and turn to Jesus Christ for forgiveness of their sins.

    That in no way construes that people are capable of doing so.

    God makes believers out of unbelievers. He causes His Word to go out and accomplish what it is intended to do.

    He moves men to speak about Him and for Him. If it were possible to shut up men that God moves.....He would cause the rocks to cry out. In Him we move and have our being.

    And as more of an answer to your question of God asking or commanding people to do what they are incapable of doing.....yes He does and can do that.

    There is no rule book that God has to follow on such things.

    He has every right to demand that men are to be perfect.....even though no man is capable of being perfect!

    The ten commands come from God and are good.

    Even though all people are not to lie it does not mean ALL people are not liars.

    Just because God commands men it is no way proof that men are capable of keeping them or doing any of them.

    Hope I have answered well.

    KJB
     
  13. whatever

    whatever
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    John 10:16 - "And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd."

    Mark,

    You keep saying that the Bible doesn't say things that it actually does say. You really ought apologize to KJB, and you really ought to be more careful next time. When your very first sentence is so obviously wrong you lead people to wonder why they should read anything that follows.
     
  14. Mark Osgatharp

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    Yes, Jesus said these people "will hear my voice" but this is talking about a different group of people than those at hand. Of the sheep who had already heard of Jesus all had believed. Of those who had heard and not believed, none were His sheep. That is plain enough from the words,

    "But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me."

    If we apply your reasoning to the text, we must assume that anyone who once hears and disbelieves cannot possibly be saved. But that is not at all what Jesus was saying.

    The eventuality of of those who Jesus said "will believe" is not that some who had heard would reject for a time but would subsequently believe. The eventuality was that that they would eventually hear.

    You must remember, the Lord had people scattered throughout the whole world, called by Caiaphas in his prophecy "the children of God which were scattered abroad", which had never heard of Jesus. Jesus said these sheep would believe He was the Messiah when they heard the news of it. The reason they were counted as sheep and the reason Jesus said they would without fail accept Him as the Messsaih is that they were real believers in Messiah already.

    And thus it is written of Paul's visit to Antioch,

    "As many as were ordained unto eternal life believed."

    These were some of those children of God scattered abroad - Old Covenant beleivers - who when they heard the news of Messiah's advent, crucifixion, and resurrection, believed it.

    As for your assertion that Jesus would call on men to believe on Him who could not possibly do so, I find that absolutely incredulous and an insult to the honesty, faithfulness, and love of God.

    Jesus called on those unbelievers to believe on Him because He wanted them to believe on Him and enter the fold of His sheep.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  15. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    Mark,

    I see what you are saying but it is not possible to avoid the points of the illustration.

    The points of the illustration He was giving were not about how people did or did not become believers.

    It is more about;

    A King with subjects. A Shepherd with His sheep.

    A King with a Kingdom giving eternal life to His subjects.

    And with the very important noted fact of where they came from and Who is strong enough to keep them safe.

    And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all ; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.”

    A Fathers gift to His faithful Son. A real Kingdom with real subjects.

    KJB
     
  16. Mark Osgatharp

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    King James Bond,

    .

    And a kingdom composed exclusively of those who trust in the Lord and into which any man who will put His trust in the Lord is invited.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  17. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
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    This is a tremendous Calvinistic truth.

    One slight technicality: they are not "invited" into the kingdom so much as they are placed into the kingdom (Col 1:13).
     
  18. Mark Osgatharp

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    Men are invited into the kingdom of God. Jesus explicitly said, in John chapter 10, and that to men who he explicitly said were not His sheep,

    "I am the door: by me, if any man enter in he shall be saved."

    Just a few moments later, after telling these men they were not His sheep, Jesus called on them to believe. He said,

    "If I do not the works of the Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works, that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him."

    On top of that, one of the last things Jesus spoke to the human race is found in the end of the Revelation where He said,

    "Whosoever will let him take of the water of life freely."

    If all of that does not constitute and invitation, then the word "invite" has no meaning.

    Dis God place me in the kingdom? Yes! Did He do it by His own will? Yes! Which will He exercised when I accepted His invitation to put my faith in Him and He regenerated me by the power of the Holy Spirit and translated me into the kingdom of His dear Son. As it is written,

    "Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed."

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  19. King James Bond

    King James Bond
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    Mark,

    I have to agree with Pastor Larry on this.

    Yes that is a true statement.

    If any man enters he will enter. All are invited. Many are called....few are chosen.

    The call goes out to everybody. Come!

    I bet you and I say the same thing to people!

    Come! Come to Christ and live! Believe! I don't go around telling people not to believe or not to come.

    But just because you and I tell everybody to come it in no way proves they have the ability to come.

    God saved you by His special favor when you believed and you can't take credit for this.

    His work in you was the cause of your belief.

    Your belief is not the cause of Him saving you.

    KJB
     
  20. Mark Osgatharp

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    By stark contrast, Jesus said,

    "the Father himself loveth you because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God."

    Now who's words should I accept?

    Mark Osgatharp
     

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