John 10:12 Again


Elder Bill Walden (dec) 

 May 1, 1906 —Copied from Selected Editorials From The Primitive Baptist, page 71.

Elder C. H. Cayce:

Dear Brother in the Lord — I read your views on John 10:12. and y6ur view was the wolf caught the sheep. Does the wolf represent the devil and the sheep God's people? If so. did the devil catch one of God's people?

Yours in hope, W. M. Maness


We .will again give the reading of the text referred to: "But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep." Again, we would say that the word "hireling" is in the singular, and the pronoun "them" is in the plural. This being true, it follows that it is impossible for the word "them" to refer to "hireling."

In answer to the question, "Does the wolf represent the devil, and the sheep God's people," we answer, yes. Then, "If so, did the devil catch one of God's people?" We say no, because the Saviour is not a hireling. The Saviour here uses a flock of natural sheep as an illustration. A hireling may be caring for a flock of sheep, and when he sees danger approaching he will flee to escape the danger himself, and will leave the sheep to the mercy of the enemy. We know that in nature this is true. But the true shepherd, who is the owner of the sheep, will not leave the sheep in time of danger, but will stay with them and protect them to the extent of his power and wisdom. The Saviour is the true Shepherd, and owns the sheep, and will not flee when trouble or danger ap-proaches. e is the good Shepherd, and as such laid down His life for the sheep.

In nature the hireling will flee when the wolf approaches, and leave the sheep to be caught and scattered by the wolf. The true shepherd, or owner of the sheep, in nature, will not leave the sheep when the wolf comes. The Saviour is teaching the fact that He is the good Shepherd, and not a hireling, and that, therefore, He will not leave them to be devoured by the enemy. If the devil catches one of God's people it would be because the Saviour is a hireling and flees from them and leaves them to the mercy of the devil. The true shepherd does not leave the sheep, and Jesus is the true Shepherd, the good Shepherd; so He slays with them and protects them from the power of, the devil. As the true shepherd in nature, who is the owner of the sheep, will protect the flock to the extent of his power and wisdom, it follows that not one of his sheep would ever be destroyed, or caught by the wolf, if he has power and wisdom to prevent it. Jesus, the good Shepherd and Bishop of our souls, has all power and is perfect in wisdom. So He has power and wisdom sufficient to protect His sheep, His people. All this being true, the lesson taught is that all the Lord's people are kept safe and secure from the destructive power of their enemy, and will be brought off more than conquerors at last through the power and wisdom of the good Shepherd.

We trust we have made our position sufficiently plain now, and that the Lord may bless these thoughts to the benefit of Brother Maness and all our readers.