The Good Shepherd

Fear not, little flock, it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

I am the good shepherd. I know my flock and they know me, even as the Father knows me and I know the Father. I am willing to give my life for the sake of the sheep. My sheep recognize my voice. I know them each by name, and they follow me. I give them eternal life. They will never be destroyed, nor can anyone tear them out of my hand. My Father, who gave them to me, is greater than any kingdom or power , and no force is able to pluck even the weakest from his mighty hand. Still, there are many sheep that are lost outside the fold: I must gather them as well. They too will rejoice at the sound of my voice and will become members of one great fold, with one shepherd to care for them night and day.

He that enters in by the front door of the fold is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens the door, and the sheep thrill at the sound of his voice. He calls them each by name, and leads them out to green pastures. When he leads the sheep out to graze, he goes before them. They follow him, comforted by the words that he speaks. They will not follow a stranger; instead, they run from the sound of an unfamiliar voice.

I am the good shepherd who gives my life for the sheep. The hired hand is no substitute. He does not care for the sheep as if they were his own; and when the wolf comes he runs away, leaving the sheep unguarded. The wolf catches them, and they are scattered.

I am the door to the sheepfold. Those who attempt to enter this fold by any other way are thieves and robbers. Many imposters have come before me, but the sheep did not recognize or follow them. I am the door. Enter by this door and you will be safe, free to go in and out and find food.

This earth is plagued by corruption, by death and destruction. I have come to undo this curse, that you might discover the true meaning of life and be blessed.

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