“I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”
— John 10:9-11
Jesus claimed to be many things while here on Earth. He made claims that sometimes created division among people and, for most, these claims were sort of confusing. Nevertheless, everything Jesus said was important. Everything he did was important. Jesus was very intentional about his years spent as a human, including when he called himself the door.
When Jesus called himself the door, he followed up his statement with, “If anyone enters by me, he will be saved…” This was a very bold statement, not only during his time on Earth, but for us today. What Jesus is saying here is that we must enter through him to find life, salvation. The religious people during that time hated Jesus for statements like this. They worked so hard to follow rules in order to, hopefully, have God give them mercy. Jesus’ message was about love and grace, instead of a works-based faith. Jesus basically said that we need to come to him to find salvation, a new life.
Jesus didn’t just stop there. He continued with, “…and will go in and out and find pasture,” which is like the cherry on top! You don’t just get freedom from death with Jesus, which is absolutely enough. You find pasture! Now, as an owner of chickens, I feel like I have a better grasp of what this means, but we don’t need my understanding. Jesus continued in that passage with, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” There it is! Jesus doesn’t just want us to receive life (salvation by entering through him, the door). Jesus wants to give us an abundant life. This isn’t the reason for choosing Jesus, it’s just that he’s so kind that he wants to bless us abundantly!
I once heard a statement that went something like this: God wouldn’t be so great if the only time he could provide joy was in a perfect setting (Heaven). I get that. What that person was saying was that we can know that God is amazing because he provides us with the ability to have joy that surpasses all understanding while here on Earth, a very broken place. Jesus isn’t just the door for us to enter into, wait until we die, and then find the abundant life. Jesus is the door for us to also go in and out and find pasture while here on Earth. How beautiful!
Once you enter through him, you will see that this abundance isn’t abundance as the world may define it. The abundance he provides is greater. It’s different, but always better. Jesus, as the “good shepherd,” laid down his life for us, the sheep, so that we may have life and have it abundantly. Do you have life? Not just air in your lungs, but real everlasting life? This is why Jesus came, so why not receive it? Come to him. Don’t delay.
… if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
— Romans 10:9-10
Part of entering through Jesus is believing in what he did for us and believing that we are dead without him. Do you believe? Do you need him? Enjoy new life in Jesus, today!