They were celebrating Hanukkah just then in Jerusalem. It was winter. Jesus was strolling in the Temple across Solomon’s Porch. The Jews, circling him, said, “How long are you going to keep us guessing? If you’re the Messiah, tell us straight out.”
Jesus answered, “I told you, but you don’t believe. Everything I have done has been authorized by my Father, actions that speak louder than words. You don’t believe because you’re not my sheep. My sheep recognize my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them real and eternal life. They are protected from the Destroyer for good. No one can steal them from out of my hand. The Father who put them under my care is so much greater than the Destroyer and Thief. No one could ever get them away from him. I and the Father are one heart and mind.”
“This Is Our Story” Questions:
- In this passage Jesus’ talks about his sheep (his followers) recognizing his voice and following him. Have you ever felt like you’ve heard Jesus’ voice? What was it like? If not, what might you imagine Jesus would call you to do?
- There is a promise in this passage that those God has entrusted to Jesus will never be “snatched away.” When things are particularly hard, how might you remember – and remind others – of Jesus’ promise that he will never let us go?