March 20, 2011
Week of the Second Sunday of Lent, Monday, Day Eleven
Morning - Psalm 39, Genesis27:1-29, 1 Corinthians 5
Evening - Psalm 50, Jeremiah 4:23, John 10:11-21
The Good Shepherd is Jesus who gives His life for His sheep. Jesus knows His fate and walks without hesitation toward the cross. People have tried to reduce Jesus to a mere social/religious reformer who was killed for His efforts. But Jesus makes it clear that His death was an intentional sacrifice for us. No one took His life from Him; He laid it down of His own accord to bring His people into one fold, which is His Church. We must not read verses16 and 18 without also reading verses 4 and 5. Christ came to lay down His life for His sheep. His sheep know His voice, follow Him, and will not follow another. These aspects of God's sacrifice and human response are essential elements of the Gospel of Christ.
Self examination is an honest look at the whole tenor of our lives. We have looked at the way it includes attitudes and thoughts, now we finally look at the self examination of our actions. Are they sinful? Do they honor God? Do we sin by inaction; by failing to do what we know we should? In more Biblical language, do we hear and follow the voice of Christ? Do we flee from the hirelings, the thieves and the predators? Or do we happily follow them to our doom?